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First & Never Let Her Go & Goodbye Girl & Falling In Love Again Double CD
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A founder member of Bread, David Gates was responsible writing and singing all of their hits. When Bread broke up in 1973 after five hugely successful albums, Gates immediately embarked on a solo career, although he was accompanied by former band-mates Mike Botts and Larry Knechtel, as well as the cream of LA’s session musicians. This slipcased package contains the four solo albums that Gates recorded during the 70s, along with all the lyrics and annotation by Alan Robinson. “First” includes the sumptuous “Suite: Clouds, Rain”, while the title track of “Never Let Her Go” was a hit. After Bread reunited for a final album in 1976, Gates resumed his solo career with the hit “Goodbye Girl” from Neil Simon’s film of the same name (recently covered by Rumer), and fourth album “Falling In Love Again” in 1980.
Top Customer Reviews
With regards to this collection, looking online, these albums are hard to come by, and to be able to collect all four for less than a tenner, is an absolute bargain. Shame that 'take me now' wasn't included, as this is generally unavailable on CD, and is a lovely album.
The album 'first' is definitely the strongest, with Gates's magnum opus 'suite: clouds/rain' one of the best songs of his career by a country mile. A beautiful piano motif with some nice moog synthesiser and gorgeous singing. The whole album though, is fantastic with the gorgeous ballads aplenty, and a couple of more upbeat tracks.
Never let her go is Gates's second album, and clearly not as strong. It has much shorter, less developed songs, and less ballads than is usual for a Gates release. Still, there are many joys here, namely 'part time love', 'someday', the title track and the sumptuous ballad 'playin on my guitar'. I think the whole album just needed one more track, a really well thought out orchestrated ballad to give the album a bit of weight.
'Goodbye girl' plays more like an EP with six new tracks and a few rehashed songs from the aforementioned two albums. Goodbye girl itself is an amazing song, along with its sister piece 'overnight sensation'. Both gorgeous piano based ballads. There is the pop masterpiece 'took the last train' and the country tinged 'drifter' which is also good. There are two more upbeat rock songs, both ok, but not outstanding.Read more ›
Gates, the songwriter, singer and arranger of all of Bread's most famous songs, started out very strongly with his debut solo album, First. Great songs, great arrangements, excellent singing. The songs on his followup, Never Let Her Go, are somewhat weaker, but this is still a generally strong entry. The third album, Goodbye Girl, features his only actual hit as a solo artist (the title track), and mixes it with a combination of decent new material and some songs recycled from earlier releases. At this point, Gates seemed to be running out of steam somewhat, which was probably due in part to using some of his material for the Bread reunion album (Lost Without Your Love) around the same period. The recycled songs that originally appeared on Goodbye Girl are not presented again in this collection. Finally, Gates closed out his Elektra tenure with Falling in Love Again. This album is appreciably weaker than any that appeared before. Gates sounds tired and uninspired here, and in interviews years later has admitted that he had lost the muse when it came time to record this record. To my ears, there's only one really good song on this album, Where Does the Loving Go.
After the Elektra period, Gates would record one more solo album, for Arista, and then go into a more than decade long retirement. (The Arista album is better than Falling in Love Again, but it's not great).
I'm giving this collection four stars on the basis of how I'd rate the individual albums:
Never Let Her Go: 3.5*
Goodbye Girl: 3*
Falling in Love Again: 2*
and rounding up the result to reflect the discount one-stop-shopping available here. In truth, this collection is about a 3.5* set, if Amazon allowed partial rankings.
UK released September 2013 (October in the USA) - the 2CD Edsel EDSK 7034 (Barcode 740155703431) breaks down as follows...
Disc 1 (62:38 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 9 are his debut solo album "First" - released October 1973 in the USA on Elektra EKS-75066 and K 42150 in the UK
Tracks 10 to 19 are his 2nd album "Never Let Her Go" - released February 1975 on Elektra 7E-1028 in the USA and May 1975 on Elektra K 52012 in the UK
Disc 2 (58:30 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 6 are the album "Goodbye Girl" - released July 1978 on Elektra 6E-148 in the USA and K 52091 in the UK
Tracks 7 to 16 are the album "Falling In Love Again" - released June 1980 on Elektra 6E-251 in the USA and K 52206 in the UK
The generic card wraps that Edsel now uses on their reissues are lovely - classy looking too. The chunky 36-page booklet inside is jam-packed with details - album sleeves, 7" singles, Quad album labels, lyrics to the songs and informative liner notes by noted writer Alan Robinson. It's beautifully done.
Sound - these albums were remastered by Rhino initially and Phil Kinrade at Alchemy has clearly used those versions because this is sonically brilliant stuff. The audio is amazing - well produced - not overdone - muscle and clarity on every track.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This 2 CD set, released by Edsel Records from UK in 2013, contain 4 complete solo albums by David Gates (35 songs). Read more
I have always liked his voice ever since I heard a Bread AlbumPublished 10 months ago by David Joan
Always liked David Gates and this album collection is a great way to enjoy a great songwriter and find out He was not just about BreadPublished 12 months ago by Da Parsons
Bought this for one track heard on the radio. Have not been disappointed. The whole album is great.Published 16 months ago by KJ
Always great to listen to, been a fan since buying Baby I'm A Want You in the seventies, yes I am that old !!! Have bought all the albums originally on vinyl and since on cd. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Michael.J.Turner
I've been a David Gates and Bread fan since the 1960's, David Gates can certainly bring out the emmotions in me. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Ms. Frances M. Thompson
Amazing songs from one of the world's best song writers.After a great career, although fairly short lived, with Bread, this is his 4 solo albums in one package.Fantastic value.Published 22 months ago by GEORGE MARTIN