I decided to review a Dionne Warwick compilation. I looked for one that was a double, and covered the Bacharach years of the 60s, the Warner years of the 70s and the Arista years of the 80s and beyond. I could not find such a compilation! In spite of all the albums available, there could be a gap in the market! A double is more than justified to get beyond the well known songs of the whole career of this recording legend.
This one covers the 60s and 70s, but the Arista stuff ('Heartbreaker', 'That's What Friends Are For' etc) is missing. Nevertheless, in conjunction with a disc of that music, this compilation will give you the hits, and a bit of depth from this icon.
The Sceptor years of the 60s, cover 34 of the 40 tracks here. That ratio is about right. When Dionne sings those Burt Bacharach/Hal David songs, it is one of those rare moments in life when everything was in the right place. You pull on the door and it opens into a world of magic. The casual listener could be forgiven for not realising how many of these numbers are Dionne Warwick originals. So many artists covered these songs and had hits with them. To my ears, few equalled Dionne's versions of these songs (maybe Aretha, Gladys, Luther and Dusty managed it). It is difficult to pick out favoites, as they are all so good. If you press me I'll rate 'Are You There With Another Girl' as my fave, but it could change tomorrow.
Dionne makes these songs seem easy, but try one at karioke, and you will soon realise that they are not! Dionne and the team made them appear easy listening, but they are deceptively complex, and pleasing on different levels.
After the success of the 60s, the Warner years were an anti-climax, but do not write them off. She was still making great music, including her US #1 'Then Came You' with The Detroit Spinners, and the superb and hard to find 'Once You Hit The Road'.
This album, along with a disc of Dionne Warwick's Arista music, is enough to melt the meanest heart, and keep you honest and loving for the rest of your life!
on 3 September 2002
Granted, I only knew Dionne's voice from a song she did for the soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful, then one day I heard her version of the classic "I Say A Little Prayer" and I found it very strangely performed (it was on the radio on a bus). After a couple of days it was still in my head so I decided to buy this cd among others because it looked like one that wasn't just produced in a second. The artwork is very good, and there are pictures and liner notes fot some background on Dionne.
I was captivated right away by "Don't Make Me Over" and her high voice. There were a lot of classic songs I already knew, and she performs them heavenly.
There are a lot of great songs here for my taste, and also some really hidious songs (lyrically, I mean) that I just don't get ("...Kentucky Bluebird, fly away..."???????????).
I soooooo adore "You've Lost That Loving Feeling", it's one if the best songs I ever heard. "Track Of The Cat" is also a small masterpiece in my opinion, and there's also another song, which sounds very different to the others, sounds a little 50s, "Make It Easy On Yourself". A delight.
If you don't know Dionne Warwick, this surely is the best cd to start with.