Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
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Phil Rogers | 01/02/1999
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this for Track #5, "Somethin' Else Again" which was the opening track of his first album way back when and I was very disgusted when track #5 WAS something else. This is not a great collection and the recording of the tunes toward the albums' end is terrible. Not a good recording of an otherwise fine artist! I'd like to see a real remake of Rickie Havens' first album, "Somethin' Else Again"."
Mostly the least challenging of Havens' early work . . .
Phil Rogers | Ann Arbor, Michigan | 06/28/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The other reviewer got his wires a little crossed. The title song of Havens' album 'Something Else Again' is not the song he was thinking of because it isn't the song that opens that album, and is in fact one of Richie's lesser early efforts. The opener (doubtlessly the one he was thinking of) was in fact titled "No Experience Necessary, No Opportunity Needed", and it's one of Richie's very best, and one of my favorite songs of all time. Too bad it's not here. Other great ones from that album, which was really his 2nd (after the debut 'Mixed Bag') were "The Klan", which has some of the best acoustic guitar strumming and most passionate singing I have ever heard, and the very moving, slow acoustic number "From the Prison". On a more hopeful and very inspired, beautiful note was the glorious anthem "New City". And "Inside of Him" and "Don't Listen to Me" are also very impassioned songs with very deep melodies and lyrics. They seem to have included many of the less gutsy, less creative, less interesting songs on this compilation. "Run, Shaker Life" and "Maggie's Farm" are two more less than stellar numbers from 'Something Else Again'. All in all the compilers took a very [bare bones] approach in assembling this CD. They took the easy way out . . . followed the road most traveled.Though nine of the eleven tracks represented here are from his two first album releases, none of Richie's greatest work from these two was included here with the exception of "The Klan" and possibly "High Flyin' Bird" and his Woodstock anthem "Handsome Johnny". This is not to say that the compilation is a dead pig by the roadside, because Havens does a marvelous job covering Beatles and Dylan songs. But when the real gourmet offerings are left off the plate, no matter how well prepared are the meat and potatoes, there's still something sadly missing.Pick up 'Mixed Bag', then search some of the other compilations to locate some of the other songs mentioned above, and you'll end up with a much fuller, more accurate representation of what the early Richie Havens was/is about. All the best of luck to you."