Sunday, 19 April 2009

“The Platinum Collection” by BARBARA LEWIS. A Review of the 2007 Rhino CD Compilation.

Barbara Lewis is part of my "SOUNDS GOOD: Exceptional CD Remasters Soul, Funk & Jazz Fusion" Download Book available to buy on Amazon to either your PC or Mac (it will download the Kindle software to read the book for free to your toolbar). Click on the link below to go my Author's Page for this and other related publications:


“…I’ll Be Yours Until The Stars Fall From The Sky…”

As part of the legendary label's 60th Anniversary celebrations, Atlantic issued a slew of budget-priced compilations under the title "The Platinum Collection" (see below for the full list). This Barbara Lewis set is a straightforward reissue of the "Hello Stranger: The Best Of" compilation issued by Rhino way back in 1994; it's minus the detailed liner notes, but still has that great remastered/restored sound.

Its superb 20 tracks cover her 5 Atlantic albums and some of her non-album single sides. The original 12-page booklet is reduced to a 4-page inlay that doesn't provide much info, so here's a breakdown of what track came from what (51:22 minutes):

"Hello Stranger"
July 1963, USA Stereo LP on Atlantic SD 8086 (CD Tracks 1 to 5)
"Snap Your Fingers"
January 1964, USA Stereo LP on Atlantic SD 8090 (CD Track 7)
"Baby, I'm Yours"
August 1965, USA Stereo LP on Atlantic SD 8110 (CD Tracks 6, 8 and 12)
"It's Magic"
April 1966, USA Stereo LP on Atlantic SD 8118 (CD Tracks 10, 13, 14 and 17)
"Workin' On A Groovy Thing"
June 1968, USA Stereo LP on Atlantic SD 8173 (CD Tracks 15, 16, 18, 19 and 20)

Track 9 is "Spend A Little Time", a 7" single issued April 1964 on US Atlantic 2227
Track 11 is "Pushin' A Good Thing Too Far", a 7" single issued in October 1964 on US Atlantic 2255

Lewis is like so many of the fabulous Soul Ladies of the Sixties (Maxine Brown on Wand, Barbara Acklin on Brunswick, Clydie King on Stateside, Mabel John on Tamla Motown, Mitty Collier on Chess jump to mind) - beloved by soul fans everywhere for their sheer class and the strength of the material they issued. The fact that Lewis penned six of these tunes is even more impressive. Doo Wop fans should also note that the wonderful Chess group 'The Dells’ provided backing vocals on seven tracks (3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10 and 11) while the strings were arranged and conducted on Track 17 by ace producer Arif Mardin.

A great compilation then for peanuts amount of money - and a top way of introducing yourself to the extraordinary richness of the Atlantic label - big-time recommended.

PS: the other Atlantic artists in "The Platinum Collection" series are: - LaVern Baker, Archie Bell & The Drells, Brook Benton, Booker T & The M.G.'s, Ruth Brown, Solomon Burke, Clarence Carter, The Clovers, Arthur Conley, Don Covay, The Detroit Spinners, Eddie Floyd, King Curtis, The Mar-Keys, The Persuasions, Sam & Dave, Percy Sledge, Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas, (Big) Joe Turner and Betty Wright

- Atlantic Label ALBUM DISCOGRAPHY -

“Hello Stranger” [1963]
Atlantic 8086 (Mono), Atlantic SD 8086 (Stereo SD-8086) in the USA
Side 1: Hello Stranger/Puppy Love/On Bended Knees/My Heart Went Do Dat Da/My Mama Told Me/Gonna Love You Till The End of Time
Side 2: Would You Love Me/Longest Night Of The Year/Does Anyone Want A Lover/We're Too Young To Marry/Love Is A Castle/Think A Little Sugar

“Snap Your Fingers” [1964]
Atlantic 8090 (Mono), Atlantic SD SD-8090 (Stereo) in the USA
Side 1: Snap Your Fingers/Please, Please, Please/Frisco Blues/I'll Bring It Back Home To You/Just A Matter of Time/Twist And Shout/I Don't Want To Cry
Side 2: Turn On Your Love Light/Stand By Me/If You Need Me/What'd I Say/Baby, Workout/Shame, Shame, Shame

“Baby, I’m Yours” [1965]
Atlantic 8110 (Mono), Atlantic SD-8110 (Stereo) in the USA
Side 1: Baby, I'm Yours/My Heart Went Do Da Dat/Come Home/Think A Little Sugar/If You Love Her/Stop That Girl
Side 2: Puppy Love/Hello Stranger/Someday We're Gonna Love Again/Snap Your Fingers/How Can I Say Goodbye/Straighten Up Your Heart

“It’s Magic” [1966]
Atlantic 8118 (Mono), Atlantic SD 8118 (Stereo) in the USA
Side 1: It's Magic/The Shadow of Your Smile/Let It Be Me/Quiet Nights/Since I Fell For You/Don't Forget About Me
Side 2: I Only Miss Him When I Think Of Him/Yesterday/He's So Bad/A Taste Of Honey/Sorrow/Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)

“Workin’ On A Groovy Thing” [1968]
Atlantic Stereo LP SD-8173 in the USA
Side 1: I'll Keep Believin'/Workin' On A Groovy Thing/Make Me Your Baby/Girls Need Loving Care/I Remember the Feeling/Baby, What Do You Want Me To Do
Side 2: Make Me Belong to You/Love Makes The World Go 'Round/I'll Make Him Love Me/Only All The Time/Sho-Nuff (It’s Got To Be Your Love)/Thankful For What I’ve Got

“The Best Of” [1971]
Atlantic Stereo LP SD-8286 in the USA
Side 1: Baby, I'm Yours/Hello Stranger/Make Me Your Baby/Don't Forget About Me/I Remember The Feeling/Make Me Belong To You
Side 2: Baby, What Do You Want Me to Do/Puppy Love/Stop That Girl/Come Home/Stand By Me/It's Magic

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