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Dave White

Why you shouldn't ignore "greatest hits" album

By June 4, 2013

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There are those among us who are quick to discount the legitimacy of albums that are compilations of back catalog songs. After all, they argue, classic rock is and always has been an album-oriented genre, and some of an artist's best work is often found in the deep tracks on their albums that never became well known hit singles.

While that's true, it's also true the one of the best selling albums of all time (in any genre, not just classic rock) is Eagles 1976 release, Their Greatest Hits.

Arguments on the side of reissues include the technical advances that can vastly improve the audio quality of the original masters, and the ways you can hear the music as the artist hears it when she/he/they are directly involved in the song selection and production process.

Think about these things the next time you're tempted to thumb your nose at what might turn out to be much more of a new experience than you might think.

Why you shouldn't ignore "greatest hits" albums


June 21, 2013 at 9:29 am
(1) Bob N says:

I agree that Greatest Hits albums should not be dismissed entirely. My case in point is Frank Zappa’s Mothermania, in which the songs may have appeared on previous albums, but the versions, while some are technically the same, differ from the originals in different ways.

June 21, 2013 at 10:27 am
(2) Otto Greenleaf says:

You say that Bob Seger’s Back In 72 album is one of the best albums of the 70′s. However, you also state that it has been out of print since ’73. Well, how do you get to listen to an album that has been out of print that long? Have a great day!

June 21, 2013 at 6:37 pm
(3) Dave White says:

Good example, Bob.

June 21, 2013 at 6:40 pm
(4) Dave White says:

Actually, Otto, what I said was that Seger’s album was one of those celebrating its 40th anniversary, and that the interesting thing about it was that even though it has long been out of print, it contained songs that have been regular fixtures on Seger’s concert set lists. I don’t think I would go so far as to say it was one of the best of the ’70s.

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