Time Life Music’s Singers & Songwriters: Classics features 20 cuts, almost all of which were culled from the singer/songwriter-rich 1970s. Featuring a solid mix of certifiable classics including “Still Crazy After All These Years” (Paul Simon), “(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay” (Otis Redding), and “Everybody's Talkin'” (Harry Nilsson) along with artist high watermarks such as “Leader of the Band” (Dan Fogelberg), “Sundown” (Gordon Lightfoot), and “For What It’s Worth” (Buffalo Springfield), Classics dutifully replicates a classic rock radio Sunday playlist.
Time Life Music’s Singers & Songwriters: Troubadours offers up 34 rock, folk, and pop cuts from the '60s and '70s. The two-disc set, which is part of Time Life’s Singers & Songwriters series, hits mostly high notes, covering everything from soft rock (Dan Fogelberg's “Longer”) to hippie folk (Scott McKenzie's “San Francisco [Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair]”) to classic rock radio staples (Peter Frampton's "Baby, I Love Your Way").
Time Life Music’s Singers & Songwriters: 1976-1977 collects 24 radio hits over the span of two discs. Despite the title, the compilation doesn’t just favor traditional singer/songwriters like Al Stewart, Linda Ronstadt, and England Dan & John Ford Coley, though they are represented here. Group contributions include Orleans (“Still the One”), Fleetwood Mac (“Say You Love Me”), Chicago (“If You Leave Me Now”), and Bread (“Lost Without Your Love”), but it’s the solo acts that provide the most recognizable hits.
This Time Life Singers & Songwriters collection highlights several classic singles released between 1974 and 1975. Among the 24 tracks are the original versions of "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" by Elton John, "Miracles" by Jefferson Starship, and "Sunshine on My Shoulders" by John Denver, in addition to strong tracks by Carly Simon, Harry Chapin, James Taylor, and Jim Croce. This enjoyable sampler will please any die-hard soft rock fan.
The two-year interval covered in this volume of Time-Life Music's Singers & Songwriters series was one of consolidation for the many singer/songwriters who had emerged in the early '70s. Carole King followed up Tapestry, the album that established her as a performer after years as a songwriter, with Music, which spawned the hit "Sweet Seasons." James Taylor was on his second follow-up to his commercial breakthrough Sweet Baby James with One Man Dog, which produced "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight." His new wife Carly Simon released her third album, No Secrets, which gave Simon her biggest hit yet with "You're So Vain." John Denver, too, hit new sales peaks with Rocky Mountain High and its title single. And Cat Stevens had followed the success of Tea for the Tillerman with Teaser and the Firecat and its second single "Morning Has Broken." Meanwhile, several new singer/songwriters were crowding the field, among them Don McLean with the epic allegory "American Pie," America with its Neil Young sound-alike "A Horse With No Name," and Seals & Crofts with the lilting "Summer Breeze".
For the compilers of Time-Life Music's Singers & Songwriters series, which – more or less – chronicles the 1970s singer/songwriter movement, the 24-month period 1970-1971 marked the real birth of that trend, with the popular emergence of such defining figures as James Taylor, Carole King, Carly Simon, John Denver, and Cat Stevens, all of whom had their first big hits in the style included here.
The double-disc 2011 U.K. collection The Essential Whitney Houston bears some strong similarities to the 2000 U.S. set The Greatest Hits, sharing 22 of its 35 songs. And it’s not just the big hits that overlap: there are a clutch of remixes that carry over, all bunched together on the second disc just like they are on The Greatest Hits. Consequently, The Essential Whitney Houston plays much like The Greatest Hits; even if it has a handful of songs not on the 2000 collection, it covers the same territory equally well and equally entertainingly.
EMERSON LAKE & PALMER (ELP) reformed for the first time since 1998 to headline the High Voltage Festival on Sunday July 25th 2010. 2010 marked the 40th anniversary of the creation of Emerson Lake and Palmer, the band that was formed from King Crimson, The Nice and Atomic Rooster. They became the first true prog-rock Super Group and defined an era…