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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sixties surf music
Jan Berry and Dean Torrence made music that was very similar in many ways to the early Beach Boys music. Actually Jan often collaborated with Brian Wilson on songwriting - Surf city, Drag city, Dead man's curve and Ride the wild surf being among the songs they wrote together. Further evidence of their close ties is provided here by the inclusion of several covers of Beach...
Published on 15 Aug. 2005 by Peter Durward Harris

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great for true fans
OK, overal, this is a good album of their music, fans should be pleased. I, on the other hand, I'm not really a fan, but enjoy one or two of their tracks, and thats why I bought it. I have to be honest, some of the tunes oh here are just dreadful, but some are great, turn up the volume on hot summer days while driving, and thats what this music is all about (to me). The...
Published on 30 July 2010 by DrewRG


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sixties surf music, 15 Aug. 2005
By 
Peter Durward Harris "Pete the music fan" (Leicester England) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Jan Berry and Dean Torrence made music that was very similar in many ways to the early Beach Boys music. Actually Jan often collaborated with Brian Wilson on songwriting - Surf city, Drag city, Dead man's curve and Ride the wild surf being among the songs they wrote together. Further evidence of their close ties is provided here by the inclusion of several covers of Beach Boys classics. Although not included here, Barbara Ann (originally released on the Beach Boys Party album) features one member of Jan and Dean as lead singer - I've seen different reference source naming Jan or Dean so I can't say which one.
Jan and Dean's music was about more than just surfing as some of their other recordings (Linda, Heart and soul, a cover of Norwegian wood) but if you don't enjoy surf music, you won't find much to get excited about here. The duo's career ended abrubtly when Jan nearly died in a horrific accident. He recovered sufficiently to be able to record again in the seventies but was unable to recapture past glories. Meanwhile, Dean quit music and established a successful career in graphics design, though Jan and Dean re-united to provide the support act for the 1978 Beach Boys tour.
If you enjoy the early music of the Beach Boys, you'll probably enjoy this too, especially as Brian Wilson contributed so much tothese recordings.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jan and Dean's greatest., 22 Aug. 2012
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At last a Jan and Dean album with the ORIGINAL recordings, last one I bought had a terrible re-recorded version of "The little old lady from Pasadena" on it, this compilation is great.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bubblegum pop at its best, 25 July 2013
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Toe-tapping fun. It is about time this CD came out. it is everything you would hope it would be. Buy it and enjoy!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Is it?, 14 May 2015
By 
Dangerous Dave (Berkhamsted, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jan & Dean (Audio CD)
The best of Jan & Dean this is not - from a quick glance at the track list you will note the absence of "Surf City", "Little old lady from Pasadena" and more. So it's a black mark to Not Now Music for some misleading labelling. If one rather simplistically measures "best" by chart sucess, then "Baby talk" counts but not a lot else. Essentially this set consists of the early Jan & Dean singles, cutting off at the end of '62 but including the sides credited to "Jan and Arnie" which were made while Dean Torrence was on military service in 1958.

And these tracks are well worth a listen.

For the relatively casual listener i.e. one not really acquainted with the pairing, what comes through loud and clear is, initially the sheer consistency of the boys. That very first record, "Jennie Lee" issued as Jan and Arnie (as in Arnie Ginsburg), positively sparkles and sets the bar high for what follows. You'll spot "Jennie Lee" about two thirds of the way down the second disc and, conveniently it's followed by the flip and the following pair of Jan & Arnie singles. While they're a little less special they do establish an outfit (and an ideas man in Jan Berry), with plenty of drive and a willingness to experiment.

But with the Dean Torrence back from the US Army, "Baby talk", the first outing as Jan & Dean is another goodie. And they don't really let up from there on. With the limitation of only two voices, unlike the traditional four or even more that you'd hear in a doo-wop group, they play more changes than you'd think were ever possible on the basic "baaaa baaa ba ba ba ba" pattern.

The range of material is wider than you might have expected. Although the default is almost relentlessly up tempo and often, but not always, upbeat in message, they mix in romantic ballads "Your heart has changed its mind" and "We go together", some reasonably intelligent teen pop (if that's not an oxymoron) but try "Sunday kind of love" and "Don't fly away", the odd oldie like "Heart and soul" and a splendid "Clementine", and sometimes a thoughtful sort of item like "Poor little puppet". The backing is varied but always highly professional, ranging from string sections to booting saxes, depending on the mood required. This was the cream of LA session musicians and it showed. I'll forgive the odd rikky tick sounding one for the overall excellence of the sonic pictures that we get in the set.

My personal favourite is the fashion comment "Baggy Pants" though I'm unclear from the lyrics as to whether the reference is to surf wear or not. I should mention that if you're looking for so-called "surf pop" or "surf music" in here, you won't find it. The Beach Boys actually beat J & D to the punch on this one, releasing "Surfin'" as their first single in December '61. Jan & Dean themselves didn't come out with their great "Surf City" until May '63 but that's another story as I've already indicated.

None of this is high art but it's fun listening, and as good as a lot of other stuff that was around in the first few years of the sixties.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Early singles, 19 May 2014
By 
Rog (Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jan & Dean (Audio CD)
Most of the reviews here seem to be of another album. This album contains recordings from 1958 to 1962. Basically it consists of the duo's first sixteen singles (oddly omitting one of the B-sides, "Judy", but does include the three earlier singles by Jan & Arnie and the A-side of a Jan Berry 1960 solo single . It's great stuff but it does pre-date their surf and car hits.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great for true fans, 30 July 2010
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OK, overal, this is a good album of their music, fans should be pleased. I, on the other hand, I'm not really a fan, but enjoy one or two of their tracks, and thats why I bought it. I have to be honest, some of the tunes oh here are just dreadful, but some are great, turn up the volume on hot summer days while driving, and thats what this music is all about (to me). The best from here and the best of the Beach Boys and you have a great CD. I just need to burn my own CD! :o)
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Misleading title, 7 Aug. 2013
This review is from: The Very Best Of Jan & Dean (Audio CD)
This is the Challenge and Arwin recordings of Jan & Dean and not the later Liberty ones.
Thankfully there's a proper version of Barbara Ann here rather than the horrible live version by the Beach Boys which Jan Berry sang lead on
This would fall into the category of straight high school pop or white doowop with not a surfboard in sight in spite of the sleeve
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 11 Aug. 2014
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very good
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Very Best Of Jan & Dean, 13 Dec. 2013
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The Very Best Of Jan & Dean, i have no idea who jan and dean are, so i wonder if these are items i bought,
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