This single CD “25 All-Time Greatest Hits”, released by the now defunct Varese Sarabande from US in 2000, contains 25 songs.
In April 1964 veteran R&B impresarios George Goldner, Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller teamed up with the multi-talented producer/songwriting team of Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich and launched Red Bird Records in New York City. This was a match made in heaven. Over the next several years the Red Bird label would release some of the most exciting pop records ever recorded. And while it wasn't really planned that way, nearly 90% of the labels successful releases were by female groups or solo artists. "The Girl Group Sound" features 25 of these single releases from the Red Bird catalog.
Varese Sarabande had already issued two Johnny Tillotson compilations, one (Poetry in Motion) covering his Cadence output and the other (The Very Best of Johnny Tillotson) his later MGM era, prior to the appearance of this anthology. It's the most comprehensive of the lot, spanning both Cadence and MGM from 1958 to 1967, and in fact including everything from Poetry in Motion, although lacking some songs from The Very Best of. 25 All-Time Greatest Hits is the best single-disc Tillotson collection to invest in, covering the country, pop, and teen idol rock facets of the versatile if unexciting singer on his 1950s and 1960s releases.
All-Time Greatest Hits is a 2-LP compilation album by Roy Orbison released in 1972, featuring the original Monument Records recordings. The album was re-released on compact disc by CBS Records in 1989. The album was given a high-quality digital remastering from the original analog master tapes by Steve Hoffman for DCC Compact Classics, Inc. in 1997, catalog number GZS-1118.
If Rhino's Very Best of the Drifters is a fine R&B snack, then All-Time Greatest Hits & More: 1959-1965 is a three-course gourmet meal with dessert built on the same ingredients. Forget about the higher price and the fact that 40 songs might seem to be more Drifters than most casual listeners would want – All-Time Greatest Hits & More: 1959-1965 is a towering and magnificent collection of some of the best popular R&B ever done this side of Sam Cooke. And, as with Sam Cooke, the beautiful part of the Drifters' work during this period is that any look beyond and behind their hits reveals a lot more songs that were every bit as good as those hits. There's not even a slightly weak track anywhere on All-Time Greatest Hits & More, which contains the biggest hits Ben E. King, Rudy Lewis, and Johnny Moore sang for the group. "There Goes My Baby," "This Magic Moment," "Save the Last Dance for Me," "Sweets for My Sweet," "I Count the Tears," "Some Kind of Wonderful," "Up on the Roof," "On Broadway," and "Under the Boardwalk" are all here, mastered in surprisingly good sound for the late '80s.
It took quite a while for a definitive Barry White compilation to hit the market, but All-Time Greatest Hits – part of Mercury's Funk Essentials series – finally filled the bill in 1995. Boasting a full 20 tracks from White's heyday of 1973-1978, more than half of which made the R&B Top Ten, All-Time Greatest Hits is easily the most generous single-disc White collection on the market. It includes the edited single versions, not the full-length album tracks, which actually makes for a more digestible introduction to White's achievements. Like his forebear Isaac Hayes, White was not just a deep-voiced crooner, but a talented producer and arranger who'd spent years honing his craft behind the scenes in the industry. And like Hayes, White spent a great deal of time setting up moods on his albums, using lush, sweeping orchestrations to build very gradually to climaxes. (Actually, that probably explains a good deal of his effectiveness.) But White was not simply a Hayes disciple; his swirling productions were less complex than Hayes', but more in tune with the emerging disco sound, which certainly boosted his popularity.