Sunday, 7 September 2008

"Buddy Holly' by BUDDY HOLLY. His debut album re-issued on CD in 2004 as part of the ROCK 'N' ROLL 50th ANNIVERSARY SERIES



Holly fans have lambasted MCA (who've had charge of his catalogue) for decades now - both here in the UK and elsewhere. Why? Well, back in the day, they released two seminal compact discs when CDs were completely new. They were both called "From The Original Master Tapes" - one for Buddy Holly and the other for Bill Haley & His Comets. And they weren't just good - they were outstanding! An absolute wow - both of them! Stereo tracks in some cases, studio chatter, and sound quality that was mind-blowing. These issues in the UK single-handedly went a long way to convincing music lovers that there really was something in this new format other than hype by the industry. Remastered by STEVE HOFFMAN, they featured sound that for 1985 was a sensation. So why mention this now - because having had their appetites whetted, fans expected more - and then - well nothing. For nearly 20 years - zip. No follow ups of the same calibre - nothing. No sign of the magnificent 1979 6LP Box Set "The Complete Buddy Holly" - which to this day is still unreleased - one of the last great box sets to be so on CD.

However, everything changes with this gorgeous 2004 re-issue. It reproduces the original US album artwork on both front and back of the booklet. There's a repro of the beautiful original label on the inlay beneath the see-through tray, a nice booklet with detailed notes - and best of all - stunning remastered sound quality care of Erick Labson. Tracks 1-12 are the original US album supplemented by 3 non-album relevant bonus tracks, "Take Your Time", "Now We're One" and "Early In The Morning". The 3 bonus tracks allow you to sequence his first five 7" singles on Coral Records.

1. Words Of Love/Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues (1957 Coral 61852)
2. Peggy Sue/Everyday (1957 Coral 61885)
3. I'm Gonna Love You Too/Listen To Me (1958 Coral 61947)
4. Rave On/Take Your Time (1958 Coral 61985) (B-side Non-Album)
5. Early In The Morning/Now We're One (1958 Coral 62006) (Non-Album A&B)

There were only two albums really in his short but mighty career, the debut album, "The Chirping Crickets" (1957 USA, 1958 UK) and this - his first solo album, "Buddy Holly" (released in Feb 1958 just one year prior to his untimely death in February 1959 at only 22). So Universal have re-issued both of these and not the subsequent compilation albums that made up all of his 60's output.

PS: A few words on the "ROCK 'N' ROLL 50th ANNIVERSARY EDITION" Series in general:
It should also be noted that this issue is part of the above named series issued in 2004 by Universal.
'Rock 'N' Roll 50th Anniversary Edition' is a secondary series title and is displayed vertically on the side inlay beneath the see-through tray of each release, but unfortunately, if you try to search databases for ANY titles under this moniker, it doesn't recognize the 'name' at all.

For those interested - the other six titles are:

1. "After School Session" by CHUCK BERRY (His Chess Debut LP In The States, see REVIEW)
2. "Rock Around The Clock" by BILL HALEY & HIS COMETS (ground-breaking 1956 LP, see REVIEW)
3. "The Chirping Crickets" by THE CRICKETS (their debut LP featuring BUDDY HOLLY, see REVIEW)
4. "St. Louis To Liverpool" by CHUCK BERRY (1964 STEREO LP on Chess, see REVIEW)
5. "Bo Diddley Is A Gunslinger" by BO DIDDLEY (1960 STEREO Chess LP, see REVIEW)
6. "Rock, Rock, Rock! - Original Soundtrack" by VARIOUS (Chuck Berry, The Flamingos and The Moonglows) (1956 Chess 'Rock'n'Roll Movie Soundtrack LP, see REVIEW)

I bought all 7 of these titles and I can't recommend them enough - each album remastered to superb sound quality, colour artwork lovingly restored and each bolstered up with 3 or 4 relevant single releases from the time (some previously unreleased). Fans of Haley, Holly, The Crickets, Berry, Diddley and Rock'n'Roll in general should quickly acquire all of these exemplary CDs. They make for the best basis of a collection in a minefield of lesser compilations. Enjoy!

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Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

INDEX - Artists, Albums, Record Labels, CD Remaster Engineers, Liner Notes Authors, Links etc