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A letdown then, and 10 years later
D.V. Lindner | King George, VA, USA | 02/24/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Perhaps the thing you should know first here, before you even think about plunking down the sixty bucks, is that two of Ross's most identifiable, signature hits, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" & "Love Hangover" are in their chopped-up three and a half minute 45 RPM versions. (On their original LP's they ran over six and seven minutes, respectively.) For a work that's supposed to be the exhaustive, definitive and long-awaited retrospective of so important an American singer, this is inexcusable.The last Ross single to even nudge it's way into the top ten (and then just barely, for only a couple weeks) was "Missing You" in January 1985. No Ross single since then has come close. Note that on this set, after you hear the song, you've got a whole disc yet to listen to, much of it then-newly recorded 90s material meant to foster the impression that Diana was a vital, trend-setting force in pop music still. No, not that anymore, though yes, forever a diva.So why did I buy it? In October 1993, it was the first instance Motown released a good number of classic 60s Supremes sides back in their original mono, many that didn't make it to the "Hitsville U.S.A." set, and on that score, it delivers. But this set falls far short of giving fans of the solo Diana (which I remain) the heartening and nostalgia-inducing reacquaintance of her recording career we'd been waiting for. (It was also a side-by-side failure if you'd also bought her alleged `biography,' "Secrets of a Sparrow.")One has only to compare the masterpiece work done on the boxed-sets of Aretha Franklin ("Queen of Soul"), the Temptations ("Emperors of Soul") and James Brown ("Star Time") with "Forever Diana" to know that the lady was done wrong here. Motown, it's been 10 years - scrap this one, forget about it (and we'll try to too), and start over again."
MAYBE FOREVER BUT NOT COMPLETE
Glenn Johnson | Kentucky, USA | 05/14/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"It's a shame that when box sets like these are put together the artists doesn't take the opportunity to give a complete anthology of their hit singles. It's obvious when looking at the track list of this 4 CD set that there are some hits missing. I don't mind adding album cuts etc but they should at least start with the songs most people are looking for. Also personally speaking a Diana Ross set should focus solely on her solo career. There are many Supremes anthologies out there to take care of that period of her career. That would leave room for all the hits that are omitted like the US top 40 hits One Love In My Lifetime, So Close and Pieces Of Ice and the many UK top 40 hits DooBeDooD'NDooBe DooBeDooD'NDooBe, All Of My Life, Stop Look Listen, No One Gets The Prize, One More Chance, Cryin' My Heart Out For You, Tenderness, It's Never Too Late, Touch By Touch, Experience, Dirty Looks, Mr Lee, Paradise and Heart (Don't Change My Mind). Some of them might not of been huge hits but they were considered good enough to release as singles from their respective albums so they should be included here.
The liner notes say that the songs have been remastered but they don't sound much better than previous releases but they still sound pretty good. For some reason the first two tracks on disc 2 are in mono and are in stereo on other releases.
The first disc containing the Supremes material is all in mono except for tracks 8, 22 and 23. Why this was done is a mystery to me. Motown seem to be doing this a lot on the newer reissues.
and my set DOES have Surrender on track 5 of disc 2"
The Ultimate Diva's Finest Work Showcased on 4 CDs
Glenn Johnson | 08/31/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This collection of Musical History will redefine the reason that Diana Ross was singled out when peforming with The Supremes.There is a certain magic in her voice that is showcased here by all the hits, and some Spectacular Tracks like "HOME" from The Wiz, "COME IN FROM THE RAIN" from "Baby It's Me", "AMAZING GRACE" from "Christmas in Vienna", IF WE HOLD ON TOGETHER" from "The Land Before Time", and the New Material from The Boss found on Disc 4. The 2 standout Cuts are "THE BEST YEARS OF MY LIFE", my favorite and "YOUR LOVE". Diana's voice is at it's best on these 2 new tracks. If there was ever a collection of songs that will go down in the "History" books, This is It!. Don't miss the opportunity to own this Beautoful collection of songs by the original, One & Only Diva...Diana Ross. You won't be sorry!"