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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
130
4.4 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 4 July 2001
I so appreciate amazon.co.uk and the technology which makes it possible for us in the US to enjoy a CD of the high caliber of this one. For a SHARPE fan, this CD is a natural extension. From watching the Sharpe videos, I was aware that John Tams is a fine musician. It comes out in the arranging of this CD and the choice of his songs; as well as his own singing.
It would be amiss of me to not mention the wonderful music composed by Dominic Muldowney which is included. With so much action on the screen in the videos, I am afraid that his music was overlooked by me - a person who is not a musican herself. It is impossible to ignore his brilliance in this CD.
I am pleased to add this lovely addition to my already well-developed appreciation for all things "Sharpe": Bernard Cornwell, Sean Bean and now John Tams and Dominic Muldowney. Thanks, guys!
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on 6 July 2000
Fans of the Sharpe's Rifles series, devotees to the Napoleonic wars period, and other history buffs will all enjoy this music.
Opening with the theme "Over the Hills and Far Away", narrated by Sean Bean, is pure Sharpe, but the rest of the CD is more of a universal sampling of wartime songs in the early 1800's. Each song looks at events of the time from a different perspective; the soldier far away from home for the first time, the lass whose loved one may never return, the veteran wearily trudging along to the next battle, the husband forced to leave his foreign family behind when shipped back home.
Thrown into this mix of emotional songs are fast-paced military marches, bringing to mind the other side of the wartime experience; the pomp and polish, the patriotic enthusiasm, the idealism.
John Tams has done a wonderful job of selecting music to include in this collection. And for those who may have reservations on his singing ability (my wife did, based on his solos in the television series) Tams does a great job backed up by terrific musicians and other vocalists.
Kate Rusby, who provides the vocals on "The Collier Recruit" and "Broken-hearted I Will Wander", is perfect. Any subsequent CD should include this talented singer, and more of her!
As a former military man myself, all of these songs struck meaningful chords, but my favorite track is "The Spanish Bride". A subject not normally brought up in discussions of military history, this soldier's farewell to his Spanish wife can make a grown man weep.
A must have for all Sharpe fans. A good addition to any music collection.
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on 15 April 2003
If your a fan of the Sharpe movies this cd is a must have! I especially like the songs by John Tams (who plays rifleman Hagman in the movies) His melodic voice makes this cd Sharpe as Ever!!!
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on 19 July 2002
As a dedicated Sharpe fan, I just love this CD. I listen to it in the car constantly! Even my husband, who isnt a Sharpe fan enjoyed it. I think Spanish Bride is my favourite, but then I love Over The Hills... Oh! I don't know now.
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on 25 May 2003
The involvement of Jon Tams in the series, was a stroke of genius. Serious actors who are real folksingers are not a dime a dozen. He lends the touch of authenticity to both series and soundtrack. A genuine period feel is woven in to the tapestry of the stories by the music and it stands up just as well on its own.
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on 23 April 2004
This CD containing a mix of the music from the TV shows starts with anunexpected spine tingle courtesy of a spoken feature by Sean Bean.
Itthen progresses in a natural way through their campaign to "Sunset" andclosure.
To be honest when I bought this I did wonder whether I was going to bedisappointed because sometimes these compliations don't quite live up tothe "image". Well, dear reader, I was frankly delighted with it! It's awell balanced, beautifully produced reminder of the Sharpe saga.
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on 3 October 2006
Strange to read the previous review - I am sitting here with the cover from my copy and having added up the times of the album calculate that the album is actually 52 minutes NOT 30 minutes as wrongly stated. Over the Hills and Far Away is 3.48 and the epic Spanish Bride is almost 7 minutes long. You also have two beautiful songs from Mercury nominee Kate Rusby, totally over 9 minutes. In all there are over 20 tracks, including an overture by Sean Bean. This album stayed at number 3 in the compilation charts for some time. Perhaps the previous person didn't listen to the other side!!!
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on 29 April 2007
Ok so as other people have said, it isnt necerssarily true to the TV series, over the hills and far away loses some of its charm, however I still find this an excellent album.

The CD gives a good mix of folk and marching music, with some of the arrangements being very well produced. John Tams' music is excellent, and I found the Regimental/ Military music a nice change from the usual folk CD's. Collier Recriut sounds fantastic sung by Kate Rusby, likewise it was nice to hear the full version of Johhny's Gone for a Solider in its true form.

If your excpecting the music as it was on the TV you'll be dissapointed, however if you're willing to listen to it end to end it provides an enjoyable hour or so of easy listening and captivating music.

My one major critisism is the length of some of the songs, Gentleman Soldier to the tune of British Grenadiers would have been far better with a few instrumental versus or even the more tradition lyrics "Some talk of Alexander, and some of Hercules..." encasing it.

In short, buy it if your willing to listen to something a little different to everything else in your CD collection and dont mind modern instruments used to enhance old music.
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VINE VOICEon 16 May 2007
It's perhaps not the best album you'll ever buy,but for Sharpe fans it's a must.

The arrangements are a bit different from the TV series, but so what. John Tam's rendering of 'Over the Hills' and 'The Spanish bride' are brilliant. Equally so the tunes covered by Kate Rusby.

I personally don't think the tunes by the military band add anything, but I still love the album. You can always use the skip button on your CD player!
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on 25 February 2007
I've been re-watching Sharpe, and having long-admired the music of the series, decided it was about time I bought the soundtrack.

I must admit that having read the mixed reviews, it was not without a sense of trepidation that I ordered the CD.

I'm happy to report that it lived up to my expectations, and more. From the opening bars of "The Overture" to the closing track, "Sharpe's Song/ Sharpe's Theme", I was captivated and transported to that time and place many of us have grown to love: Spanish mountains, French skies, loyal partisans, valiant heroes and repugnant villains, Waterloo, Wellington and of course, the Ninety-Fifth Rifles.

Let's clear a few things up.

No, not every piece of music recorded for the Sharpe series is on the CD.

Yes, there is plenty from the series, and the other songs - especially the vocal pieces - give a nice "flavour" of both the period and spirit of the Napoleonic Wars.

No, puritans who don't believe old instruments should be mixed with new will not like this.

Yes, everyone else will.
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