The Best That I Could Do is an appropriately self-deprecating title for John Mellencamp's greatest-hits collection, considering that the heartland rocker never seemed too convinced of his own worth. Of course, he had to struggle to get any respect after he was saddled with the stage name Johnny Cougar early in his career, but this 14-track collection proves that he was one of the best, unabashed straight-ahead rockers of the '80s. The 14 tracks here actually turn out to be a little too short to contain all of his great singles – songs like "Rain on the Scarecrow," "Rumbleseat," "Pop Singer," "Again Tonight," and "What If I Came Knocking"…
For those needing a reminder of Cole's very original and expert piano playing, this 18-track roundup of some of his best instrumentals should fit the bill. Part of Capitol's three-volume series of Cole's classic trio sides (the other two cover the vocals), The Best of the Nat King Cole Trio includes gem after gem from the group's 1943-1949 prime and features the classic lineup that included guitarist Oscar Moore and bassist Johnny Miller. With Cole and Moore seamlessly blending lines throughout, the group forged the standard for many a piano trio to follow by way of classics like "Jumpin' at Capitol," "Sweet Georgia Brown," and "These Foolish Things"…
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Recorded live at the 1971 Montreux Jazz Festival, the blistering Mongo at Montreux captures Mongo Santamaria in the absolute prime of his career, embracing all facets of his expansive musical vision for a set that is far more than the sum of its parts. Spanning from soulful Latin boogaloo grooves like "Come Candela" to psychedelic jazz renditions of pop hits like the Temptations' "Cloud Nine" to straight-up funk excursions like "Climax," Mongo at Montreux is relentlessly energetic music genetically engineered for dancing – most impressive of all is "Conversation in Drums," a virtual primer in Latin percussion.
The Best of Gary Numan 1978–1983 is a double disc compilation album of Gary Numan's singles and selected album tracks released on the Beggars Banquet Records label. It was promoted by the remixed re-release of "Cars". The contents of the enclosed twelve page booklet are identical to the one included with the previously released Exhibition compilation album. It contains various pictures from the years in question and an extensive chronological essay by Francis Drake.
The Very Best of Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band compiles the highlights from the group's first two albums, which featured the kitschy, big band-influenced disco group at the height of their powers. All of the group's hits -- "I'll Play the Fool," "Whispering/Cherchez La Femme/Se Si Bon," "Sour and Sweet/Lemon in the Honey" -- are included on the collection, as well as a number of first-rate album tracks, making it not only the perfect place to start, but also the only Dr. Buzzard album any fan needs to own.
Blancmange is a perfect band for a compilation: it was only around for three albums, so there's not a lot of material to pick and choose from (meaning that many fan favorites will fall by the wayside), and all three albums are spotty enough that buying Second Helpings: The Best of Blancmange is a quick and neat way to get pretty much all of the high points. (That said, it would have been nice if the atmospheric instrumental "Sad Day" from 1982's Happy Families had made the cut.) The duo's three best singles, the propulsive "Blind Vision" (featuring Neil Arthur's most manic vocals), the boppy and Erasure-like "That's Love, That It Is" (the closest the duo ever got to a U.S. hit), and the hypnotic, Middle Eastern-flavored "Living on the Ceiling" (an '80s weekend radio staple even though it wasn't much of a hit at the time), are all present and accounted for, as are their other singles and a smattering of quality album tracks. A simple "all meat no filler" compilation, Second Helpings: The Best of Blancmange is just about all the Blancmange most people will ever need.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. A tremendous live performance from the group co-led by Red Rodney and Ira Sullivan – two players who really bring a lot to each other's music! There's a mode here that really blows us away – a careful, sensitive approach that allows each horn player to hit their most lyrical moments – shading things in with a far richer palette of sounds than we might ever have expected. The rest of the group's a big factor for the album's sound, though – as it features the great pianist Garry Dial, who also wrote some of the tunes – plus Jay Anderson on bass and Jeff Hirschfield on drums. Rodney plays trumpet and flugelhorn, and Sullivan plays flute, flugelhorn, alto, and soprano sax – on titles that include "How Do You Know", "As Time Goes By", "Sprint", "My Son The Minstrel", and "Speak Like A Child".