3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Just nostalgia? No - great music., 22 May 2013
Some critics say nostalgia is a bad thing because it tempts us to live in the past. There is a danger of that, no doubt, but as one who is quite happy in the present I freely admit to being a sucker for a regular wallow in nostalgia - particularly musical nostalgia. The music that excites you as a child or adolescent tends to lodge in your soul and I love being transported back by the sounds that turned me on to music and made me want to be a musician. The London American Story: 1961 contains 50 tracks, almost all of which I love because of nostalgia for my youth, yes, but also because it's great pop music. I already have many of these tracks on vinyl and although I still possess a good quality turntable and sound system I love the sheer convenience of having them all together on CD.
This is a nice package. The tracks are remastered on two CDs and mostly sound great (although on my system I did think a few sounded a tad bass-heavy). The musical content takes some beating. From the first Motown hit, Shop Around by The Miracles, to the classic rock'n'roll of Eddie Cochran and Jerry Lee Lewis, the soul of Ben E. King and New Orleans R&B of Fats Domino, you can't want for variety. There are great instrumentals too from Sandy Nelson, The Ramrods, Johnny & The Hurricanes, a couple from guitar ace Duane Eddy and the slightly lame but loveable Stick Shift by The Duals. There's quality, if conventional, neat teen pop from the Bobbys Vee and Darin and Johnny Burnette alongside the unconventional, groundbreaking sounds of Roy Orbison, Gene Pitney, Del Shannon and the wonderfully haunting The Mountain's High by Dick & Dee Dee.
I won't bother naming the very few tracks I could do without, but I will rather cheer at the many personal favourites that are here: Rick Nelson's Hello Mary Lou, Orbison's Running Scared and the fabulous doo-wop version of Once In A While by The Chimes. Has nostalgia got the better of me? I don't think so - this is great music.