Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons: Two Classic Albums plus The Four Lovers and Rare Singles
Real Gone 4 CD Set RGMCD065
The new 4 CD set has finally arrived and it consists of the pre-Sherry stuff, plus the albums Sherry and the Christmas Album (Seasons Greetings). I assume this means that all these are now safely out of copyright, otherwise the ultra-low price of just over £5 would be hard to believe. We get no booklet of notes, but we do get a proper, substantial CD case, not one of the deviously designed slim ones that deny access to the contained CDs.
I haven't had a chance to listen to it all, but there were two things I wanted to particularly check out.
First of all "I've Cried Before" is at last offered in its original complete version, with all the backing vocals intact. Excellent.
Then we come to "Lost Lullabye" - the Billy Dixon and the Topics version is actually the same as the original mono version on the Sherry album. Obviously they still had the tapes and decided to use it again. However, the stereo version here as part of the Sherry album is the alternative "softer" version that we have heard on all previous CD releases. Several possibilities exist here. Just maybe the stereo album version was this softer version as well, who knows? All I can say for sure is that my mono Sherry album contains the "harder" vocals. Clearly in those early days there were multi-track recordings, maybe four track, that contained alternative vocals. Or maybe there were various takes and some have survived.
Anyway, it's interesting and again we see that in the case of CD releases "authentic" and "original" recordings can still offer a few nice surprises. For example, the brilliantly long version of "Lay Me Down (Wake me Up)" that never saw vinyl release. So old and new can reveal all sorts of things.
All we have to do is listen to the recordings, which I hope we actually do, and there are joyous moments to be found. This new 4 CD collections looks like another valuable addition to the repertoire available.
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