14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Popular American singer of the fifties
Johnnie Ray began his career in the late forties and had a steady run of hits until the end of the fifties, surviving the rock'n'roll revolution. This collection features all Johnnie's British hits and the majority of his American hits.
In America, Johnnie's most famous song is Cry, with which he topped the American charts in 1949. Lynn Anderson had a major country hit...
Published on 14 Mar 2005 by Peter Durward Harris
2 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars album
Johnnie Ray was an old singer, he sings the songs like 'Just Walking In The Rain' & 'Cry' with The Four Lads.
Frankie Laine was another singer alongs with him.
This singer alongs with Guy Mitchell, Frankie Laine, Jim Reeves, and Adam Faith who is oldies singer.
Published on 28 Dec 2005 by poposs
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Popular American singer of the fifties,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)Johnnie Ray began his career in the late forties and had a steady run of hits until the end of the fifties, surviving the rock'n'roll revolution. This collection features all Johnnie's British hits and the majority of his American hits.
In America, Johnnie's most famous song is Cry, with which he topped the American charts in 1949. Lynn Anderson had a major country hit with it in the seventies and Crystal Gayle repeated Lynn's feat in the eighties. Many other country singers have also covered Cry, Willie Nelson among them.
Apart from Cry, Johnnie had several other big hits in America. Little white cloud that could (the flip side of Cry) and Just walking in the rain both reached number two. Johnnie also made the top ten with Please Mr Sun, Here am I broken hearted (the flip side of Please Mr Sun), Somebody stole my gal and You don't owe me a thing. He had many other American hits but his chart history in Britain is more impressive despite there being no charts before November 1952.
Johnnie had three number one hits in the UK, these being Such a night (1954), Just walking in the rain (1956) and Yes tonight Josephine (1957). He had seven other UK top ten hits - Faith can move mountains, Somebody stole my gal, Let's walk that-a-way (with Doris Day), If you believe, Hey there, Song of the dreamer and Look homeward angel. It is reasonable to assume he would have had many more hits if record charts had started earlier. There were sheet music charts but I know nothing about them.
Johnnie ended his British and American chart careers with I'll never fall in love again. Tom Jones later had a hit with a similarly titled song. Furthermore, it is also the title of a classic Bacharach-David song with which Bobbie Gentry topped the UK charts. All three songs are completely different despite their identical titles.
Johnnie was a huge international star in the fifties, yet is almost totally forgotten now. This CD is a reminder of his former status. If you want to explore his music in greater depth, more comprehensive compilations are available, but this contains all the essentials.
27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A recording that you realise you know all the words,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)On this disc are the songs that Johnny made his own, starting with Walking in the Rain and ending with Walking my Baby Back Home he sings in his own unique style, through ballads and swing.Twenty four songs that when you hear again after a number of years you realise that you are singing along with the Master word and tune perfect and you are back at the theatre in your memory watching Johnny Ray standing in that hunched way with the screams of the girls filling the auditorium.This recording takes you back when?
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Never Equalled!,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)The music on here is self-evidently the best of Mr Ray's hit output. It gives you very graphic evidence of his origins as a jazz band singer and, like early Elvis Presley, you will also appreciate how much black music he listened to before he became a big star.
Personally, being born in March 1952 means I can't tell you what was number 1 when I popped out-no charts in the UK until Nov that year.
Actually, there's no doubt who WOULD have been there if there'd been a chart then-JOHNNIE RAY. The only doubt would be which of the 4 songs from 2 successive double-sided hits would have been on top over here-because all 4 titles concerned were cemented fast in Billboard's top ten at the time! Something only the Beatles have equalled in the 53 years since!
Better people than me have an affinity with Johnnie-HM Queen Elizabeth officially announced her sorrow at Johnnie's death in 1990, remembering that Johnny had taken British airwaves by storm from 1951 with Cry. This was before her father died & while she could still be young and carefree. Nice one, Mrs Windsor-exquisite taste!
Johnnie was massive in Britain for at least 5 further years. Several London streets were blocked solid in 1953, with thousands of people who'd just seen him at the Palladium and didn't want their first taste of magic ending. He DID disperse them, but only after an unrehearsed 30 mins encore from the stage-door roof. If you get the impression the guy was mustard and had the world eating out of his hand---dead right!
I've got this CD on as I write this review. Just to confirm what made him so huge. Yep, that voice!! He had a hell of a range in tone and styles, but was always instantly recognisible, whether you came from Manchester, Minsk or Mars.
Finally, Johnnie Ray could never give less than 110% whenever he sang & that's mostly why he died at only 63. A star with that attitude deserves your immediate savouring of his genius on the CD machine. As I will be following him with The Bravery, you'll also know the guy's leapt the generation gap again and is still quite an epitome of style & no little cool.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HAS ALL HIS HITS,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)An excellent compilation of his hits,if you want just one representative CD of Johnnie Ray,then look no further.Recording quality for 60 year old tracks,is very good,no clicks or hiss,so taken from master tapes I expect.Although I cannot find any references to digital remastering,the sound is so clean I think it must have been.Little more to add,mine was a used in very good condition and was outstanding value for money,recommended
5.0 out of 5 stars Great selection,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)Great selection. You will like this if you are a fan of Johnny Ray or this style of music. [Filler.]
5.0 out of 5 stars Super,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)Takes me back to my teenage days, and when I went to see Johnnie Ray in person at the theatre great listening.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Probably the first to cover black music,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)Its hardly surprising that Johnny Ray had the hits with Just Walking In The Rain or Such A Night-the original versions would have sounded pretty odd to people in the pre Elvis days of the 50s.
Though I've never heard the original Cry by Ruth Casey-and which is not on CD-
its possible that it came to Ray's attention from Lavern Baker who endorsed him.Just Walking..had a link with the Sun label who'd recorded the original by the Prisonaires which has a thin unfinished sound and is a joke compared to Ray's superior cover.Ditto the comical voice of Clyde McPhatter and Such A Night.
This collection loses a star because its missed off Ray's finest hour-his version of Shake A Hand,a song many covered after Faye Adams including Little Richard,Pat Boone and Elvis.But no one did it as magnificently as Ray who did a reconstruction job and it was included along with Flip Flop & Fly on his R & B album The Big Beat though failed as a single.
yet a strange fact is Ray was never castigated for covering black music-which he was doing before Pat Boone or Elvis.Probably because no one at the time even thought about things like that
Maybe a label like Ace will issue Ruth Casey's Cry someday
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite when I was young,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)Good price and I was surprised that I could buy this on your site. I have ordered other CDs and willl continue to do so
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Divine Johnnie,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)We had a best of Johnnie album - vinyl which i still own - when i was growing up. This is truly fantastic, all the great mans hits and distinctive voice, and it just takes me back to Sunday mornings doing the polishing whilst my mum cooked the sunday roast. Divine and beautiful, I love it
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars mr entertainment,
This review is from: The Best Of Johnny Ray (Audio CD)this cd is a joy from start to finish.this man could really put over a song.me being an elvis fan i can see a lot of johnnie ray in early elvis's vocals.all his big hits are here "such a night"",walking in the rain"and "look homeward angel" and many more great tracks.i love it.
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