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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars


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on 29 January 2014
Miss Lee was known for "Mr. Wonderful" and a whole host of other popular song classics, and she was a wonderful artist as this great compilation of numerous of her long-length albums makes evident. Peggy had a wonderfully restrained and minimalist style accompanied by great sensitivity which always makes her a joy and especially soothing to listen to - in modern terms she can act as a powerful relaxer. Besides Miss Lee's undeniable gifts, this "great buy" is a treasure trove of some of her best recordings ever and Miss Lee consistently made good records which must be also due to the companies she worked for - Decca and Capitol in the USA. These businesses seemed to have really appreciated her and the outcome is discernible in the 8 albums provided here for your audible delight. To pick highlights is futile as practically every track is a highlight. Do buy and savour this wonderful musical box set! You won't be disappointed. Enjoy!
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on 8 December 2013
There are so many truly memorable recordings on these eight albums making it difficult to choose any favourites. It really is a treat to have the continued opportunity to purchase collections of these great performers. Peggy Lee, together with Ella F, Rosemary C, Sarah V, and so many more, are amongst the very best of 'all time'.
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on 10 January 2013
I really always liked Peggy Lee's sining and this cd set gives me a chance to hear some albums I own on old lps and some other old albums I haven't heard previouslly.
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on 29 December 2014
Great stuff by Peggy as always
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 13 February 2016
CONTENT:

There are 2 volumes of Eight Classic Albums by Peggy Lee. This is VOLUME 2. It is easily confused because both titles are the same: Eight Classic Albums. The 4 CD set, released by Real Gone Jazz, contain 8 complete albums with 97 songs, released from 1955 to 1960. I have compiled a detailed song listing (with album and singles label & number, chart position, with personal comments)(BB=Billboard Hot 100; CB=Cash Box; RW=Record World; UK=British Singles Chart):

DISC 1:
LP SONGS FROM PETE KELLY’S BLUES (Decca 8166)(7/1955):
01 Oh Didn’t He Ramble
02 Sugar (That Sugar Baby Of Mine)(Decca 29608)(uncharted a-side, 1955)
03 Somebody Loves Me
04 I’m Gonna Meet My Sweetie Now
05 I Never Knew
06 Bye Bye Blackbird
07 What Can I Say After I Say I’m Sorry (Decca 29608) (b-side, 1955)
08 He Needs Me (Decca 29605)(a-side)(uncharted a-side, 1955)
09 Sing A Rainbow (Decca 29605)(b-side, 1955)
LP DREAM STREET (Decca 8411)(1956):
10 Street of Dreams
11 What’s New
12 You’re Blasé
13 It’s All Right With Me
14 My Old Flame*it’s the Capitol version that charted.
15 Dancing On The Ceiling
16 It Never Entered My Mind
17 Too Late Now
18 I’ve Grown Accustomed To His Face
19 Something I Dreamed Last Night
20 Last Night When We Were Young
21 So Blue

DISC 2:
LP SEA SHELLS (Decca 8591)(1958):
01 Sea Fever
02 Nine Thorny Thickets
03 Little Old Car
04 Greensleeves
05 Chinese Love Poems – The Fisherman Autumn Evening
06 The Happy Monks
07 The White Birch and the Sycamore
08 Of Such Is The Kingdom of God
09 A Brown Bird Singing
10 I Don’t Want To Play In Your Yard
11 The Maid with the Flaxen Hair
12 The Wearing Of The Green
13 Chaconde (Le Bon Petit Roi D’Yvetor)
14 Chinese Love Poems – Going Rowing Like The Moon/The Music
15 The Riddle Song
16 The God Wedding Ring
LP MISS WONDERFUL (Decca 8816)(1959):
17 Mister Wonderful (Decca 29834)(BB 14/1956; CB 22/1956; RW 23/1956; UK 5/1957)
18 They Can’t Take That Away From Me (Decca 29877)(b-side, 1956)
19 Where Flamingos Fly (Decca 30117)(b-side, 1956)
20 You’ve Got To See Mam Ev’ry Night (Or You Can See Mama At All) (Decca 29837)(RW 81/1956)
21 The Come Back (Decca 29837)(b-side, 1956)
22 Take A Little Time To Smile
23 I Don’t Know Enough About You (Decca 30059)(RW 73/1956)
24 Joey, Joey, Joey (Decca 29877)(BB 76/1956)
25 Crazy in the Heart (Decca 29834)(b-side, 1956)
26 You Oughtta Be Mine (Decca 30059)(b-side, 1956)
27 We Laughed at Love (Decca 29994)(uncharted a-side, 1956)
28 That’s Alright Honey (Decca 29994)(b-side, 1956)

DISC 3:
LP THE MAN I LOVE (Capitol 864)(20/1957):
01 The Man I Love
02 Please Be Kind
03 Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe
04 (Just One Way To Say) I Love You
05 That’s All
06 Something Wonderful
07 He’s My Guy
08 Then I’ll Be Tired of You
09 My Heart Stood Still
10 If I Should Love You
11 There Is No Greater Love
12 The Folks Who Live On The Hill (Capitol 15214)(uncharted UK a-side, 1961)
LP JUMP FOR JOY (Capitol 979)(15/1958):
13 Jump For Joy
14 Back in Your Own Backyard
15 When My Sugar Walks Down The Street
16 I Hear Music
17 Just in Time
18 Old Devil Moon
19 What A Little Moonlight Can Do
20 Four or Five Times
21 Music! Music! Music!
22 Cheek to Cheek
23 Glory of Love
24 Ain’t We Got Fun?

DISC 4:
LP I LIKE MEN! (Capitol 1131)(1959):
01 Charley My Boy
02 Good – For Nothin’ Joe
03 I Love to Love
04 When A woman Loves A Man
05 I Like Men
06 I’m Just Wild About Harry
07 My Man
08 Bill
09 So in Love
10 Jim
11 It’s So Nice to Have a Man Around the House
12 Oh Johnny, Oh Johnny, Oh
LP PRETTY EYES (Capitol 1401)(1960):
13 As You Desire Me
14 It could Happen To You
15 Pretty Eyes
16 Moments Like This
17 Remind Me
18 You Fascinate Me So
19 I Wanna Be Loved
20 I’m Walking Through Heaven with You
21 I Remember You
22 Too Close for Comfort
23 Fly Me to the Moon
24 Because I Love Him So

POSITIVE POINTS:

1 This is another fantastic collection of 8 complete albums by Peggy Lee, three being charted on Billboard 200 Album Chart. EMI has released 2 LPs on 1 CD in the past, but the price is much more expensive and with only 2 albums. This is a great deal.
2 As noted above, there are many singles included, plus many memorable album tracks.
3 The sound is wonderfully remastered: clean with no hiss. Miss Peggy Lee’s whispering voice is centralized, while the backing instruments in the orchestra are clearly defined.
4 The details of the session players for each album were included on the back page of the booklet. Of course, Real Gone Jazz teased us with the 8 album fronts scattered on the front cover. It is of interest to note that Frank Sinatra was named the conductor in The Man I Love album with Nelson Riddle just the arranger.

NEGATIVE POINTS:

1 As in the EMI 2 LPs on one CD series, the front and back album covers are clearly displayed, each occupying the entire page. To include that in your booklet (6/8 pages devoted to advertisement) will make your collection more valuable. In the case of Real Gone Music, no booklet is available.
2 There are no label & number, and no chart positions. There was no essay.
3 As the tradition with many other labels in UK, no compilation beyond 1963 is available, probably due to Public Domain law in UK.

FINAL THOUGHT:

There are many great albums at reasonable price with good sound. This set is highly recommended.
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Eight Albums, Eighty Nine tracks on four CDs for the price of just one CD and digitally enhanced to boot makes this a tempting buy.
And this is volume two.
This is a link to volume 1
Eight Classic Albums
For the price of a couple of CDs you could get 16 classic albums
You get an awful lot for not a lot of money.

The Real Gone Jazz label has garnered some really good reviews for sound quality.
The digitally enhanced sound is a good indicator but for a proper review I really suggest you read other, more knowledgeable people's reviews.
The collection is on 4 CDs encased in a double wide jewel case.

BUT Amazon has not said which classic albums are on the set and have not provided a track listing.
They did this with volume one adding the track listing a long time after the set had been released making my `review' redundant.
I can see that a really thoughtful person has on Amazon USA but that review may disappear as more UK reviews appear (Amazon seem to add USA reviews to help the buyer). This is in a way ironic because these releases are supposed to be EU only releases

But the Australians, Canadians and Swiss seem to sell them by the shed load!

So this may be of interest and use?
The albums are
SONGS FROM PETE KELLY'S BLUES (1955),
DREAM STREET (1957),
SEA SHELLS (1958),
MISS WONDERFUL (1959),
JUMP FOR JOY (1959),
THE MAN I LOVE (1957),
I LIKE MEN (1959) and
PRETTY EYES (1960).

As always if you see any typos add a note and I will correct and credit you with the correction- just add a comment......

The Tracks and CD `split'.

DISC I:
SONGS FROM PETE KELLY'S BLUES (1955):
1. Oh Didn't He Ramble
2. Sugar (That Sugar Baby Of Mine)
3. Somebody Loves Me
4. I'm Gonna Meet My Sweetie Now
5. I Never Knew
6. Bye Bye Blackbird
7. What Can I Say After I Say I'm Sorry
8. He Needs Me
9. Sing A Rainbow
DREAM STREET (1957):
10. Street Of Dreams
11. What's New
12. You're Blase
13. It's All Right With Me
14. My Old Flame
15. Dancing On The Ceiling
16. It Never Entered My Mind
17. Too Late Now
18. I've Grown Accustomed To His Face
19. Something I Dreamed Last Night
20. Last Night When We Were Young
21. So Blue

DISC 2:
SEA SHELLS (1958):
1. Sea Fever
2. Nine Thorny Thickets
3. Little Old Car
4. Greensleeves
5. Chinese Love Poems - The Fisherman/Autumn Evening
6. The Happy Monks
7. The White Birch And The Sycamore
8. Of Such Is The Kingdom Of God
9. A Brown Bird Singing
10. I Don't Want To Play In Your Yard
11. The Maid With The Flaxen Hair
12. The Wearing Of The Green
13. Chaconde (Le Bon Petit Roi D'yvetor)
14. Chinese Love Poems - Going Rowing/Like The Moon
15. The Riddle Song
16. The Gold Wedding Ring
MISS WONDERFUL (1959):
17. Mister Wonderful
18. They Can't Take That Away From Me
19. Where Flamingos Fly
20. You've Got To See Mamma Ev'ry Night
21. The Come Back
22. Take A Little Time To Smile
23. I Don't Know Enough About You
24. Joey, Joey, Joey
25. Crazy In The Heart
26. You Oughtta Be Mine
27. We Laughed At Love
28. That's Alright Honey
DISC 3:
THE MAN I LOVE (1957):
1. The Man I Love
2. Please Be Kind
3. Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe
4. (Just One Way To Say) I Love You
5. That's All
6. Something Wonderful
7. He's My Guy
8. Then I'll Be Tired Of You
9. My Heart Stood Still
10. If I Should Love You
11. There Is No Greather Love
12. The Folks Who Live On The Hill
JUMP FOR JOY (1959):
13. Jump For Joy
14. Back In Your Own Backyard
15. When My Sugar Walks Down The Street
16. I Hear Music
17. Just In Time
18. Old Devil Moon
19. What A Little Moonlight Can Do
20. Four Or Five Times
21. Music! Music! Music!
22. Cheek To Cheek
23. Glory Of Love
24. Ain't We Got Fun?
DISC 4:
I LIKE MEN (1959):
1. Charley My Boy
2. Good - For Nothin' Joe
3. I Love To Love
4. When A Women Loves A Man
5. I Like Men
6. I'm Just Wild About Harry
7. My Man
8. Bill
9. So In Love
10. Jim
11. It's So Nice To Have A Man Around The House
12. Oh Johnny, Oh Johnny, Oh
PRETTY EYES (1960):
13. As You Desire Me
14. It Could Happen To You
15. Pretty Eyes
16. Moments Like This
17. Remind Me
18. You Fascinate Me So
19. I Wanna Be Loved
20. I'm Walking Through Heaven With You
21. I Remember You
22. Too Close For Comfort
23. Fly Me To The Moon
24. Because I Love Him So
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One person has asked the reviewer what albums are featured on this 4 disc set.
Here they are, Please also read the note at the bottom of this listing.
The CDS themselves are also not clearly marked so I've included the actual Albums featured.
You may wish to cut and paste then print this and stick it in your CD case?
Track Listing
DISC 1: A NEW SOUND, A NEW STAR, VOL. 1/THE SOUNDS OF JIMMY SMITH:
1. Way You Look Tonight, The
2. You Get 'Cha
3. Midnight Sun
4. Lady Be Good
5. The High and the Mighty,
6. But Not for Me
7. The Preacher,
8. Tenderly
9. Joy
10. There Will Never Be Another You
11. The Fight,
12. Blue Moon
13. All the Things You Are
14. Zing Went the Strings of My Heart
15. Somebody Loves Me

DISC 2: A NEW SOUND, A NEW STAR, VOL. 2/A DATE WITH JIMMY SMITH, VOL. 1:
1. The Champ,
2. Bayou
3. Deep Purple
4. Moonlight in Vermont
5. Ready 'n' Able
6. Turquoise
7. Bubbis
8. Gone with the Wind
9. Falling in Love with Love
10. How High the Moon
11. Funk's Oats

DISC 3: THE INCREDIBLE JIMMY SMITH AT THE ORGAN, VOL. 3/AT THE CLUB BABY GRAND, VOL. 1:
1. Judo Mambo
2. Willow Weep for Me
3. Lover Come Back to Me
4. Well, You Needn't
5. Fiddlin' the Minors
6. Autumn Leaves
7. I Cover the Waterfront
8. Sweet Georgia Brown
9. Where or When
10.The Preacher,
11. Rosetta

DISC 4: AT CLUB BABY GRAND, VOL. 2/A DATE WITH JIMMY SMITH, VOL. 2:
1. Caravan
2. Love Is a Many Splendored Thing
3. Get Happy
4. It's All Right with Me
5. I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart
6. I'm Getting Sentimental Over You
7. Groovy Date

In the past when I've listed the contents of a box set like this I've received a few negative comments.
Like It's not a review- true
and why just list?
Well it simply helps people make a more informed choice.
So this is not a review.
But the question is was it of use to you?
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on 23 February 2014
A) About the sound quality:

1) This set is not for the audiophile-oriented, as you've probably guessed. The production resonates with the obvious fact that the whole collection of 8 LP:s-in-CD:s is mastered from vinyls, not the original Blue Note master tapes. Strangely, it is with two recordings from 1957 only that things are much more annoying.

2) The disc2, second LP, 'A Date with Jimmy Smith, vol. 1', has probably the most unpleasant sound quality I've ever heard on a CD - 1930's Djangos are a novelty compared to this one! The shortcomings of the master LP shine through as over-emphasized high ends, the distortion of the most powerful symbal strokes - and in general there is an audible feeling of ultra-cheap production values. That disc-half is purely worthless.

3) On the contrasting side, especially 'At the Club Baby Grand, vols. 1 & 2' are like rather enjoyable oldie recordings on CD! The sound is pleasant to the ear, and not sounding unnatural.

B) About the music:

1) You get a fairly good picture of Jimmy Smith through the music of these eight LP:s. Unlike e.g. '8 Classic Albums / Oscar Peterson', this box includes many recordings, that truly _are_ considered classics. Jimmy plays more or less great throughout, but on the aforementioned terrible LP-reportation his playing truly can't be enjoyed. A high point of this collection to me could be the track 'Willow Weep for Me', which is so atmospheric and gives way to the thought that possibly Jimmy Smith's playing could've been at its best in his more rare, slower tempos.

2) The guitarists Thornel Schwartz (1956) and Eddie McFadden (1957) play very good comping, but their solos are not that good, though decent. Especially the occasional patchiness is annoying, but tolerable.

3) The drummers play 'from the straight bag' throughout. No surprises, except that Art Blakey is not just as good as he's used to be.

C) Conclusions:

1) If you want the real thing, don't buy this box, but the Blue Note releases of the true classics of this lot instead. The most important would possibly be 'A New Sound, A New Star, vols. 1&2' [both included in Blue Note 2*CD 'New Sound...a New Star - at the Organ']. Or then - you could wait for the new Blue Note releases. In either case, you would get a more aesthetic package and definitely a tape-mastered sound.

2) If you want just a Jimmy Smith collection, and that's it, with no high expectations of aural authenticity, buy this one. The playing is decent to great and - considering the price - the shortcomings forgivable for a less serious listener.
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Real Gone Jazz have put out a great many titles and having had the chance over Christmas and New Year to listen to 4 sets I have come to the conclusion that these are a real bargain and whilst probably aimed at the collector who already has the LPs and knows all about the singer these will also do well for someone who wishes to obtain a lot of Peggy Lee for a modest outlay. My reason for giving 4 stars is just that without the extra information that one now expects these sets fall short in just that one respect. More please Real Gone Jazz...
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on 7 July 2015
Jimmy Smith was an amazing player and this is a generous collection .
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