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Ian & Sylvia - Greatest Hits
Ian & Sylvia
Ian & Sylvia - Greatest Hits
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (23) - Disc #1


CD Details

All Artists: Ian & Sylvia
Title: Ian & Sylvia - Greatest Hits
Members Wishing: 3
Total Copies: 0
Label: Vanguard Records
Release Date: 10/25/1990
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop, Rock
Styles: Traditional Folk, North America, Folk Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 015707005623, 762186007524, 0090204729999, 015707000512, 015707000543, 090204729999

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CD Reviews

The real sweethearts of the early 60's folk music revival
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 11/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I have to admit that I had never really listened to Ian & Sylvia until after "A Mighty Wind" came out. Since there were only four songs on the soundtrack album by Mitch & Mickey, the faux "sweethearts" of the Folk Music scene, I was inspired to go track down the obvious real world counterparts, Ian and Sylvia Tyson; he played guitar, she played autoharp. The Canadian duo were popular during the early part of the Sixties folk revival, producing a series of solid albums featuring their beautiful harmonies on both traditional and contemporary songs. It was the latter that made the bigger impression as the duo covered songs by Bob Dylan ("Tomorrow Is a Long Time," "The Might Quinn (Quinn the Eskimo)," "The Wheels on Fire"), Johnny Cash ("Come in Stranger"), Gordon Lightfoot ("Early Morning Rain"), Tommy Makem ("Little Beggarman"), and Joni Mitchell ("Circle Game"). As was often the case with the more earnest members of the folk movement, the commercial success came to others. Ian Tyson's "Four Strong Winds" was covered by the Searchers while Sylvia's "You Were on My Mind" became a big hit for We Five. Ironically, each song was not only the composer's best effort but also their first to be recorded. Eventually the legacy of Ian & Sylvia would be their style more than their songs as male and female harmonies made groups like the Mamas and the Papas, the Jefferson Airplane, and Fairport Convention successful. When the folk movement moved on to folk-rock and country rock at the end of the decades, Ian & Sylvia followed suit, but with considerably less success. Just make sure that if you pick up Ian & Sylvia's "Greatest Hits" that you get this 1987 release that has over an hour's worth of music and not the 1968 Vanguard release that has only a dozen tracks (some of which are different from this album). However, keep in mind that Ian & Sylvia were more album oriented that most artists, so enjoying what you hear on this collection should be taken as a nudge in the direction of their other albums, especially the work from the early Sixties."
Needed by all persons with ears
Tony Thomas | SUNNY ISLES BEACH, FL USA | 04/24/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"What distinguished Ian and Sylvia was a driving respect for music, and Ian strong roots in real Western music, and a musical integrity and ingenuity that surpassed that of most "folksingers" of their period. They never drifted off into the direction of smooth pop oriented singing. There might have been the usual attempt to take them in a "folk rock" direction in the last years they were together, something they did NOT take seriously and made fun of from the stage of their performances in the late 1960s.

However, these recordings have a strength, the bite, the twang, the strength, and the snap of real folk based music and of folk originated blues and country music. The standards of production particularly their work with the great guitarists Johnny Herald and Monte Dunn, not to mention Ian Tyson's own developing skill with the guitar, and the tastefulness of the ensembles has not been matched since in acoustic music.

Ian and Sylvia's music works now even when the pop folk sensibility that surrounded them has deservedly withered away. I spend a lot of time talking with, playing with, hanging out with people who treasure completely traditional folk music, which is not at all what Ian and Sylvia ever pretended to play, although especially at the beginning it was one of their most important sources. I have found even three or four decades after the duo ended, that a tremendous respect and a lot of listening goes on to Ian and Sylvia, which is not true for other folkies like Joan Baez or Bob Dylan though at least the latter two deserve it.

Of course, Ian Tyson continued a great career of his own, longer and actually larger than what happened with Ian and Sylvia as a writer of songs rooted in his Canadian Western origins. The skills unveiled in songs like "You were on my mind" and "Four strong winds" have won Ian a bunch of Grammies and Junos (the Canadian equivalent). He is still out there performing, making great albums and being who he has always been, a straight shooter, a no bs artist.

Sometime in the 1980s, an urban legend appeared that is still strong that Sylvia Fricker had died, killed herself, or otherwise left this life. She is very much alive, still singing, and over the years has done great folk oriented shows for the CBC.

Oh, one thing I forgot.

Aside from all this analysis, Ian and Sylvia are just so darned good that anyone with ears desperately needs to have as much of their music as they can either afford or steal!"
I adore this CD
Tony Thomas | 07/14/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"My father introduced me to folk music (including Ian and Sylvia) at an early age. I have enjoyed this CD for years and have finally found it available for purchase!"