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4.6 out of 5 stars15
4.6 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 13 February 2016
CONTENT:

This 2 CD set, released by reputable reissue label from UK, Jasmine Records in 2013, contain 50 songs. I have compiled a detailed song listing (with album and single label & number, chart position, date of release, with personal comments)(BB Pop=Billboard Hot 100; BB AC=Billboard Adult Contemporary Chart; CB Pop=Cash Box Singles Chart; RW Pop=Record World Singles Chart; UK=British Singles Chart):

DISC 1:
01 Travelling Blues*from album “The Early Years” (1960)
02 Delia Gone (Pye 7NJ.2029)(UK b-side, May 1960)*rare gem; CD debut.
03 Gladiolus Rag (Pye 7NJ.2038)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960)*title misspelled as “Gladiola Rag”
04 Willy The Weeper (Pye 7NJ.2033)(UK b-side, October 1960)
05 Dardanella (Pye 7NJ.2037)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960) and later (Reprise 20,090)(a-side)(BB Pop 105/1962)(June 1962)*apparently, there is a Part 1 for a-side and Part 2 for b-side for the Reprise single.
06 Franklin Street Blues
07 Easter Parade (Pye 7NJ.2035)(UK b-side, October 1960)
08 Marching Through Georgia (Pye 7NJ.2029)(uncharted UK a-side, May 1960)
09 In A Persian Market (Columbia DB 4795)(UK b-side, March 1962)
10 I’m Going Home*1959
11 Ory’s Creole Trombone
12 Summer Set (Columbia DB 4382)(BB Pop 104/1960; CB Pop 85/1960; UK 5/1960)(January 1960)
13 Let The Light From The Lighthouse Shine
14 Berliner Luft March (Gay Hussar)*1959
15 Tiger Rag
16 Cushion Foot Stomp (Metronome B-1403)(German b-side, June 1960)
17 Run Come See Jerusalem
18 Old Comrades March
19 C.R.E. March (Pye 7NJ.2033)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960)
20 Carry Me Back (Pye 7NJ.2036)(UK b-side, October 1960)
21 Jump In The Line (Pye 7NJ.2037)(UK b-side, October 1960)*rare gem; CD debut.
22 Blaze Away (Pye 7NJ.2034)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960)
23 El Abanico (Pye 7NJ.2036)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960)
24 Louisian-I-Ay (Pye 7NJ.2038)(UK b-side, October 1960)*rare gem; CD debut.
25 Higher Ground (Pye 7NJ.2034)(UK b-side, October 1960)
26 Under The Double Eagle (Pye 7NJ.2035)(uncharted UK a-side, October 1960)

DISC 2:
01 Stranger On The Shore (Columbia DB 4750)(a-side)(BB Pop 1(1)/1962; BB AC 1(7)/1962; CB Pop 1(1)/1962; RW Pop 1(2)/1962; UK 2/1961)(November 1961)*with the Leon Young String Chorale; if you are looking for the best sounding single stereo version (not LP version), you can check out Bill Buster’s “Complete Pop Instrumentals of the 60s, Volume 3 (1962)” or “Hard to Find Orchestral Instrumentals” (Eric Records, 1999)
02 Lullaby*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
03 Mean To Me*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
04 Greensleeves*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
05 Take My Lips (Columbia DB 4750)(UK b-side, November 1961)*rare gem; CD debut; b-side to “Stranger On The Shore”
06 Sentimental Journey*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
07 Nobody Knows*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
08 Is This The Blues? *from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
09 Cielto Lindo (Atco 45-6217)(US b-side, February 1960)
10 Deep Purple*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
11 I Can’t Get Started*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
12 Carolina Moon*from album “Stranger On The Shore” (1962)
13 Stars And Stripes (Columbia SCD 2155)(UK 22/1961)(August 1961)
14 Perdido Street Blues
15 Papa Dip*from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
16 My Heart Belongs To Daddy*from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
17 Gospel Train*from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
18 Maryland March*from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
19 That’s My Home (Columbia DB 4673)(a-side)(UK 7/1961)(June 1961)
20 Go Tell It On A Mountain *from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
21 Creole Jazz (Columbia SCD 2155)(UK b-side, August 1961)(UK 22/1961)*rare gem; CD debut.
22 House Rent Stomp*from album “Mister Acker Bilk’s Lansdowne Folio” (1961)
23 My Bucket’s Got A Hole In It (Columbia DB 4673(UK b-side, June 1961)
24 Stomp Off Let’s Go

POSITIVE POINTS:

1 This is a decent collection of Mister Acker Bilk’s songs up to 1962 (23 singles and 27 album tracks). There are quite a few rare gems, making their CD debut.
2 The sound is very well remastered: clean with no hiss.
3 All the songs are original versions, no re-recorded version. I still remember vividly I bought “The Magic Clarinet of Acker Bilk” on K-tel in 1984 when CD first came out, and true to K-Tel form, the songs are re-recorded versions.

NEGATIVE POINTS:

1 There are no label & number, no chart position or album source in the booklet. This was in 2013. In 2015, Jasmine Records has started to include the label & number and chart positions in some of their latest releases.
2 As per usual practice at most UK labels, the compilation stops at 1962, due to UK’s Public Domain law. This is really unfortunate because many US charted hits are after 1962.
3 The songs are haphazardly arranged, not chronologically.

COMPLETE SINGLES DISCOGRAPHY:

Although Mister Acker Bilk has 12 charted singles in UK, I have just finished compiling a Complete Singles Discography, and found that he has 62 singles from 1956 to 1981 (uncharted and uncharted, a and b-sides, UK, US & German), with only 118 songs (not 124 songs because 6 were repeated releases). His labels are: (1) Tempo (1956), (2) Columbia (1960), (3) Pye (1960), (4) Melodisc (1960), (5) Metronome (1960), (6) Columbia (1960 – 1971), (7) Atco (US)(1960 – 1967), (8) Deeko (1970), (9) Pye (1972 – 1979) (10) Piccadilly (1980), (11) PRT (1981). If you are looking for his Greatest Hits, the best set available is still “Very Best of Mr. Acker Bilk” (Taragon, 12 songs, heavenly sound, 1998, covering his song beyond 1962 plus duet with Bent Fabric), (2) The Very Best of Acker Bilk (One Day Music 2 CDs, 50 songs), and (3) current set.
His singles output on CDs and album output on CDs after 1962 are still sorely missing.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Mister Acker Bilk was born Bernard Stanley Bilk on January 28, 1929 in Pensford, Somerset, England. He will be forever associated with his big hit “Stranger on The Shore”. It made history by being the first UK artist, and also the first instrumental, to hit No. 1 on Billboard Hot 100. Almost all the songs in this set was by Mister Acker Bilk & His Paramount Jazz Band. The entire set was enjoyable and is recommended.
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Great nostalgia, yes. Acker is a music legend. Plenty of CDs have covered his early albums and popular recordings. This new Jasmine set of 2 CDs brings together late 1950s and early 1960s studio material. A mix of trad jazz and more middle of the road material. The sound quality is excellent. Pricewise a snip.
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on 21 October 2013
I haven't yet bought the cd, but playing the samples you can hear that someone has hiccups in the background. I used to have some of the numbers on LP, and no one had the hiccups there. Can someone tell me, if I buy the cd will it be free from this annoying interference?
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"Mr. Acker Bilk Requests" was the title of a 10" Pye Nixa LP, the contents of which form the first eight tracks of this 2-CD set from Jasmine. My recollection of Acker Bilk & his Paramount Jazz Band was of an exciting Dixieland band, with an extremely capable rhythm section, which produced a rough-hewn form of trad jazz. Acker's playing was marked by a slow, wide and not always reliable vibrato, and a breathy tone, most identifiable in the chalumeau register. That singular style became a positive asset when deployed playing sentimental ballads against the background of the Leon Young String Chorale, a dozen examples of which are included on the second CD.

There's more detail than usual, including personnel (although Ron McKay should have been shown as the vocalist on "Willie the Weeper" and "Easter Parade") and many of the recording dates. Against that, the liner note itself has been lifted in large part from Wikipedea, and there are gaps in the accrediting of composers ("Lullaby" is the famous composition by Brahms, and "Cielito Lindo" was written by Quirino Mendoza y Cortés). Nevertheless, this is a package which should appeal to Acker's many followers, both jazz and easy-listening based.
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on 10 April 2015
Fifty toe tapping numbers take the listener on a trip down memory lane. Many of them, having been digitally processed without distortion, could be aired on radio at least, just to let the young ones know what they're missing: jazz & swing from real instruments by real musicians.
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on 13 January 2015
No choice but to enjoy all AB's - lived near Pensford in another life and had the great man playing a coach horn in my back garden. Ah! memories.
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on 13 August 2013
An excellent collection transferred to digital , bringing great quality and reviving great memories of the 60's a must for A.B FANS
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on 9 May 2014
What a fantastic CD. Played it fully and thoroughly enjoyed it. Would recommend to all Mr Bilk,s fans, new and old
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on 30 August 2013
This recently issued CD has a wide range of the Acker Bilk style and repetoire and is good value for money
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on 4 January 2015
very disappointed,as some tracks on the no2 disc badly distorted and unplayable,forced to return.
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