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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Tribute to Jake
This is a far better and more definitive selection of Jake's finest work than the previous "Best of" although that is also great and the two complement each other quite nicely. Thackray has written THE FUNNIEST songs in the English language, from jokes put to music, topical satire, risque chansons to the downright rude and Sister Josephine, Billy Kershaw, The Lodger and...
Published on 20 May 2003 by Huck Flynn

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Genius on a disk
Jake Thackray was one of the most intelligent songwriters out there. That he chose to make a career of out clever parody and linguistic athletics made him appeal to a select rather than wide audience.

But whether you remember him through his television work on That's Life or his concerts in small theatres and folk clubs, you will appreciate this...
Published on 26 Feb 2009 by Steamin' Willie


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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Tribute to Jake, 20 May 2003
By 
Huck Flynn "huckleberry" (northern ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
This is a far better and more definitive selection of Jake's finest work than the previous "Best of" although that is also great and the two complement each other quite nicely. Thackray has written THE FUNNIEST songs in the English language, from jokes put to music, topical satire, risque chansons to the downright rude and Sister Josephine, Billy Kershaw, The Lodger and The Kiss are classic examples included here. But he was also a genuinely talented folk singer in the English tradition and this aspect of his work is perfectly represented here with the poignant Poor Sod and Rain on the Mountainside. Musically, hand picked nylon strung guitar dominates with Jake's jaunty rhythms accompanied by jazz tinged acoustic guitar ornamentation and warm double bass. These allow the brilliant lyrics of an amazing wordsmith and poet to weave their own magic. A few of the songs have more complete orchestration and these sound a bit dated. Jake is responsible for one of the most wonderful opening lines of a song - "I love a good bum on a woman, it makes my day" (On Again, On Again) and indeed his lyrics are good enough to read on their own. While I would have liked to have Family Tree, Worried Brown Eyes and Country Bus included, I would not have left out any of the existing 21 songs in an amazing collection. Thanks to EMI for this timely release in memory of Jake who, sadly, died recently. But as Jake sings in his own "Last Will and Testament":
'Lady, if your bosom is heaving, don't waste your bosom on me
Let it heave for a man who's breathing
A man who can feel, a man who can see.'
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47 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Unique Talent, 6 Jun 2003
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
Being a young lad of only 23 Years, I never knew Jake at the hight of his fame, goodness only knows why i had to accidentally stumble over his music to hear anything by him. He should be a national tresure. He manipulates the English language in a way words can't really do justice to describe. The more up tempo songs i particularly enjoy 'the lodger' 'billy kershaw' 'gypsy' & 'on again!' spring to mind, but they are all good, apart from 'molly metcalf' which shouldnt really be on a very best of collection.
Given the chance i would have put the 'castleford ladies magical circle' and 'family tree' on this collection.
RIP Jake
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33 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars See what you think - I quite like it, 26 May 2003
By 
Ian Burdon "iansb" (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
A fine collection of the songs of the late and sady missed Jake, this collection, with a fan selected running order, is about as good as it gets. Here is Jake at his very best, performing his own unique songs in his own way and mostly, and mercifully, free of the orchestrations which, in my opinion at least, marred his early albums. Most of the performances here are drawn from his later albums, the magnificent "On Again! On Again!" being particularly well represented. If you know Jake's work then you should get this without delay: if you don't know him - go on, give him a try.
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50 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beware Copy Protection, 26 April 2004
By A Customer
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
I can only echo the other comments, but would point out that the copyprotection prevents this disc from playing on at least one in-car CDplayer. Not so much a copy-protected product as one that is deliberatelybroken by the manufacturer.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars jake the rave, 17 Mar 2004
By 
stevemcguigan (Cleckheaton, W.Yorkshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
Some classics which many will know, along with some hidden gems which stand up straight of their own accord and give you a proper Northern slap in the face as if to say, "give those pretentions a rest and try to digest this if you will." You will laugh and be touched in equal parts by these songs, from the blacksmith's happy end to the song for the river swale. Beautiful, try it.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More than brilliant songs, 21 Feb 2006
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
It is impossible to know and hear the very best of Jake Thackray without hearing him speak as well as sing. I had the privilege of seeing Jake perform live on three seperate occasions during the late 70's and early 80's. Whilst his musical talent was (and still is) unique, this fine compilation is missing the vital ingredient that made him so special - his words. Occasionally you can get a little of the atmosphere with the live tracks when he introduces a song but to really appreciate how good he was you had to be there. For every song there was a story and these represented at least half of the show and were a major reason why people went to see him.
So come on Music Publishers lets try to find a recording of one of Jake's gigs and publish it without any editing - only then will you really get "the very best of Jake Thackray".
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spread the word: Jake's the greatest, 18 Jan 2008
By 
P. Tucker (Edinburgh Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
As a tiny lad in the late 60s I used to love Jake's tv appearances - I loved the sound of his guitar playing and his deadpan delivery and his vocals used to have me in stitches, though I couldn't have understood 99% of the lyrics! Then last year, four decades later, I read an article on the release of Jake's boxed set in Mojo magazine. Straight onto Amazon I ordered myself a copy of the Very Best of Jake Thackray. What a fabulous delight. I have since ordered another five copies which I've sent out to various friends, and here I am on Amazon again, ordering another three copies for further friends. Spreading the word. Jake, you're fab, unique and wonderful. There will never be anyone else like you. Wishing you were here.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Genius on a disk, 26 Feb 2009
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
Jake Thackray was one of the most intelligent songwriters out there. That he chose to make a career of out clever parody and linguistic athletics made him appeal to a select rather than wide audience.

But whether you remember him through his television work on That's Life or his concerts in small theatres and folk clubs, you will appreciate this compilation.

If you are a budding songwriter and want to inject observational comedy into your work, this was the master. Funnily enough, if you want to use a classical guitar to accompany song, learn how to do it here.

All the old corkers are here. A pity that he has an orchestra for some of the songs, they lose their edge.. If, like me, you remember sitting on a wooden box because the pub had run out of chairs, in a full room with the audience howling with laughter and occasionally lost in deep thought through something he said or sang, you will love this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An acquired taste, 8 July 2010
By 
David Kennard "Henry" (York, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Very Best Of Jake Thackray (Audio CD)
I used to like Jake Thackray, with his plummy voiced irony, and then recently went to a folk festival where several singers performed his songs and I realised just how good they were so I bought this album. By today's standards some of Jake's lyrics are not PC, even on the misogynistic side (as he acknowledges), but his wit and musical artistry are superb, and some pieces really touching.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LP Review, 13 Jan 2012
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I already have this LP from 20 or more years ago but it's up in the attic. Buying the MP3 download, especially at this price, is so much less bother than copying from the album.
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