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  • House Of Rufus [13CD + 6 DVD]
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House Of Rufus [13CD + 6 DVD] Box set

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Rufus Wainwright - House of Rufus


Affectionately referred to by Elton John as “the greatest songwriter on the planet” and praised by The New York Times for his "genuine originality," Rufus Wainwright has established himself as one of the great male vocalists and songwriters of his generation. He is the son of folk singers Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, and brother of Martha Wainwright but ... Read more in Amazon's Rufus Wainwright Store

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for 27 albums, 19 photos, videos, discussions, and more.

Product details

  • Audio CD (18 July 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 19
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: UMC
  • ASIN: B004VRWR1S
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 159,935 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Product Description

CD Description

This beautifully packaged 19 disc box set spans Rufus’ entire career and represents the most complete collection of Rufus Wainwright recordings to date. It contains:

Six studio albums; Rufus Wainwright, Poses, Want One, Want Two, Release the Stars and All Days Are Night- Songs for Lulu, now all with additional previously unreleased bonus material.

Two concerts on CD; Milwaukee at Last!!! and the legendary Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall (2CD) now with previously unreleased songs from the show.

Four additional CDs; Disc One features previously unreleased songs and rarities. Disc Two contains many of the songs Rufus has recorded for soundtracks including "Hallelujah" from the film Shrek. Disc Three is drawn from Rufus’ collaborations with friends and family members such as Leonard Cohen, Teddy Thompson, Loudon Wainwright III, Martha Wainwright, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, The Pet Shop Boys, and Burt Bacharach. Disc Four is made up of the demos from the tape which secured him his first record deal.

Six DVDs; Live at Fillmore, Rufus Does Judy at the London Palladium, Milwaukee at Last!!!, Release The Stars album commentary and live performance. Two feature length documentaries; All I Want and Prima Donna, the Making of An Opera.

All housed in a beautiful, red velvet encased, 90 page hardback book containing; rare and unseen photos, Rufus’ early hand drawn tour posters, handwritten lyrics, four art prints and other memorabilia, extensive sleeve notes with interviews with Neil Tennant, Martha Wainwright, Linda Thompson and Lenny Waronker and an introduction by Rufus.

BBC Review

Not for Rufus the typical annotated reissue package, compiled a respectable time after the originals first appeared. House of Rufus is more a one-stop career shop, the ultimate extravaganza for the besotted collector. Because it's a given no Rufus virgin will jump into bed with a 19-disc, 193-track box set, no matter how seductive the red velvet packaging and 90-page hardback (no sniggering, please) book containing handwritten lyrics, art prints and interview gush with the likes of sister Martha and Pet Shopper pal Neil Tennant. So what awaits the committed Rufus lover after all that foreplay?

Setting aside the six studio albums (from 1998's Rufus Wainwright to 2010's All Days Are Night: Songs for Lulu, all here with a handful of additions), which are notable for their increasing lavish production frills and ambition, the three live albums and the six DVDs (from live footage to documentary fare), it's best to spotlight the four bonus albums, because these are the revelations. Take the first, the vocal/piano demos that won Rufus his initial record deal. His tremulous delivery is operatic by comparison to the rock/pop pack but Rufus didn't always come on like he was reinventing the term 'rococo'. Among the demos are Get Out Of Town and Sweet Repose, unreleased stunners that betray his show tune soul.

Rufus Rarities is similarly pared back, as if he doesn't usually want to be seen without full slap. The unreleased cover of folk-blues standard St James Infirmary, underpinned by just acoustic guitar and banjo, and the simply strummed Patience Is a Virtue is the Rufus nobody dreamt existed. Close behind is the barroom savvy of (rare Japanese bonus track) A Bit of You. Even the Rufus at the Movies CD eschews orchestral luxury, none more so than his version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah from Shrek. Hearing him tackle He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother (from Zoolander) and not smother it to death is startling.

That leaves the Family and Friends CD. The Wainwright/McGarrigle clan dominate but there's room for Teddy Thompson and Antony Hegarty tracks where Rufus was the guest. Time and time again, with space and constraint, he shines. And even when he soars, to tear-pricking effect on David Byrne's Au Fond Du Temple Saint, there's a direct connection at heart. Rufus in rococo mode is a wonder to behold, but if there's a place to head after the opera writing and red velvet packaging, it's right here.

--Martin Aston

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Infoman on 26 July 2011
Format: Audio CD
This box set really has everything covering a staggering 19 discs yet it does lack extra content despite the discs with demos, and rare tracks. In reality you get four new cds that have not been released individually before plus a couple of extra tracks on most of the remaining cds. As far as the DVD content goes the extras are even slimmer and consist of a few live recordings e.g. from Montreux Jazz Festival. The Release the Stars DVD is identical to the original limited edition version and consists of a mere four tracks plus comments from Rufus. Surely there must have been more material in the archives. And finally you do not get the actual Primadonna opera but a making of DVD. Despite all these shortcommings what you do get in the House of Rufus is execellent.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Neckerchief on 29 Aug. 2011
Format: Audio CD
This is a brilliant set: both exhaustive and pretty!

It's a sturdy box, with a similarly sturdy book and very good disc-holders. So often these types of deluxe sets rely on glued-together disc rests which either get glue on the discs themselves or damage the surface of the discs because of scratchy sleeves - not so in this case. I expected slight pressure marks on the velvety covering on the outer box and they were there, but it's not too noticeable and they probably add to the visual texture of the fabric anyway.

All in all - very nice. Soooooo worth it for fans!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By JestaCat on 22 July 2011
Format: Audio CD
I have received my boxset today, thank you Amazon.co.uk for a quick international delivery!

* * * * *

I have only one word to describe this: GORGEOUS!

Admittedly, I was unconvinced when I read the announcement of this boxset's pre-release as it was set to contain so much previously released material. Once the tracklists were posted and I saw that it has an abundance of bonus tracks, I decided to ("Go, or go ahead," and) purchase it anyway, to ensure I had all of the officially available songs. I am not disappointed!

The box itself is an rectangular, red-velvet (faux, of course) plush solid cardboard slide-box, embossed with "House of Rufus" in ornate script on the front, otherwise it is simple, elegant and unadorned. It is open on one side only to slide out the hefty (read: this is a keeper, not a delicate fall-apart or throw-away) hard-back bound book which includes thick, card wallet sleeves that house, two discs per page, the CDs and DVDs either side of the 80+ page booklet. Each disc is set in an inset groove, a small thumbnail image of the original front cover artwork for the release is shown when the disc is removed.

The booklet includes, in addition to the essays on Rufus' life to date (split into Acts, nicely done), the lyrics to all album tracks printed in clear text, one complete album per 2page opening, for your sing-a-long pleasure. Of course I haven't yet read all the essays in detail, so I can't comment too much on those, but I can confirm that whilst all the original artwork is not faithfully reproduced (eg: Jörn's handwritten lyrics for "
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