Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Best Of: You've Got Me Humming
Genres: Pop, R&B, Rock
Sixties Billy Joel lost in time and space
Barry Smith | Plainview, New York United States | 08/26/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It certainly is true that if Billy Joel did not become a superstar, this retrospective CD never would have been made. In fact, both Hassles albums' master tapes would probably have been lost forever if not destroyed. Luckily, rock history works in strange ways, and Billy Joel's fascinating early career now is the subject of this tasty album. There is no denying that the Hassles started as a band with a plan: to become famous with hit songs and hit albums. The first half of the CD is devoted to all tracks from their excellent '67 debut release, and they sound great. The covers such as COLORED RAIN, JUST HOLDING ON, I HEAR VOICES (there was actually a promotional video that accompanied this track) are catchy and memorable pop songs in a general Rascals/Beatles style. Crank em up, they sound awesome in stereo!! Local sales of the record were actually good, but they did not tour nationally, so remained a cult band. HOUR OF THE WOLF was released in '68-69 to slower sales, and the sound was a departure; influenced by darker psychedelic sounds of the Late-Sixties Fillmore East/East Village scene. However, on both albums, the musicianship is professional and flawless. Billy Joel was always a talented keyboardist/vocalist even as a teenager. Guitarist Richie McKenner may have become a premeir 70s rock guitarist if his group would have seen the success it wanted. Unfortunately, the Hassles folded in the summer of '69, their final single (Sadly, NOT on this album) being released the week of Woodstock. Joel did continue as Attila with drummer Jon Small in 1970, but the psychedelic sixties phase was over. In 1970-71 there was a lost period, and when COLD SPRING HARBOR emerged in late '71, Billy Joel had started over as a James Taylor/ Elton John style singer songwriter. He apparently wanted nothing to do with his old bands and albums; seemed like a traumatic time for him. Luckily, us fans can now play and replay his oldies again and again thanks to the magic of digital remastering. This CD is recommended despite the omission of a few non-essential tracks."
"Hour Of The Wolf" on cd!
Barry Smith | 08/08/1999
(3 out of 5 stars)
"-FINALLY, the song "Hour Of The Wolf" (along with most all of the recorded work of THE HASSLES) has been released on cd, in this "Best of" compilation! Billy Joel has supposedly been "blocking" this stuff from seeing the light of day (on cd) for ages. If you were into experimental, psychedelic, acid rock and late night AM radio back in the late '60s and early '70s, then maybe you've heard this stuff before?... The epic approx. 12 minute track "Hour Of The Wolf" is reason enough for owning this cd. It is an intriguing (and virtually unknown) side to Billy Joel, that's for sure! ;-)"
Guitarist of The Hassles
Richard Mckenna | Delray Beach , Florida | 03/27/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"IT is great to here my early recordings, it sounds like 30 yrs ago was yesterday. The Hassles were, and always be the premier band from Long Island For ever Thanks, ..."