Chuck Berry may have written the lyrical book of rock & roll, but Berry was nearly 30 when he scored his first hit. Eddie Cochran was the teenage embodiment of '50s rock--a guitar-playing James Dean/Elvis Presley-like rock... more »abilly star who wrote his own teen-themed songs, many later covered by the likes of the Who and the Sex Pistols. This Razor & Tie anthology stands with the Legendary Masters album as the best U.S. compilation, repeating 15 tracks from the earlier collection and including such obscurities as the Cochran Brothers' "Tired and Sleepy." Unfortunately, there's no "Three Stars," but this is still a mighty fine sampler of prime output by a visionary artist who died three years into his recording career. --Bill Holdship« less
Chuck Berry may have written the lyrical book of rock & roll, but Berry was nearly 30 when he scored his first hit. Eddie Cochran was the teenage embodiment of '50s rock--a guitar-playing James Dean/Elvis Presley-like rockabilly star who wrote his own teen-themed songs, many later covered by the likes of the Who and the Sex Pistols. This Razor & Tie anthology stands with the Legendary Masters album as the best U.S. compilation, repeating 15 tracks from the earlier collection and including such obscurities as the Cochran Brothers' "Tired and Sleepy." Unfortunately, there's no "Three Stars," but this is still a mighty fine sampler of prime output by a visionary artist who died three years into his recording career. --Bill Holdship
Peter Durward Harris | Leicester England | 10/08/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After a few years of rock'n'roll, American pop music went through a mellower phase with Pat Boone among its leading stars. This may explain why Eddie, a brilliant rock'n'roll performer, was ultimately more popular in Europe than his homeland.
Eddie's first single, Skinny Jim, failed to chart but he made the American top twenty with his second single, Sitting in the balcony. Following that, Eddie had a run of singles that made little impact until he recorded the song that he is best remembered for, Summertime blues. Most songs about summer are joyful and happy but this bluesy rocker was something different. It made the top ten in America and the top twenty in Britain.
So far, Eddie was more successful in America than Britain but his next single, C'mon everybody, made the top ten in Britain but was a much more modest top forty hit in America. Next came Teenage heaven, which just made the American top hundred but didn't chart in Britain. After that, Something else made the British top twenty but was only a minor American hit - it was also his last American hit.
His British hits continued with Hallelujah I love her so (a cover of the Ray Charles classic), which in turn was followed by Three steps to heaven. This was his biggest UK hit, going all the way to number one. Seventies rock'n'roll cover specialists Showaddywaddy almost repeated Eddie's achievement, taking the song to number two in 1975.
Eddie continued to make the UK charts with Sweetie pie, Lonely, Weekend (a top twenty hit), Jeannie Jeannie Jeannie and My way (no, not THAT song), this last hit being in 1963. Subsequently, Eddie only entered the UK charts via re-issues of old hits - Summertime blues, a top forty hit in 1968, and C'mon everybody, a top twenty hit in 1988. The 1968 re-entry of Summertime blues explains its inclusion on so many UK sixties compilations.
Eddie died in 1960 in a town called Chippenham in England. I lived in Chippenham at the time but I was only a child, not interested in either music or news events back then. It was only many years later, long after I had left the area that I learned that this was where Eddie died. The town occasionally stages events in his memory.
This compilation contains all the essentials by one of the rock'n'roll greats who was a major influence on those that followed."
A blast from beginning to end
Candace Scott | Lake Arrowhead, CA, USA | 11/20/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Eddie Cochrane is one of the most underrated and influential rockers of the 50's. Had he lived, he easily would have taken his place with Buddy Holly, Little Richard and Chuck Berry as icons of that era. Considering his tantalizingly brief career, he contributed a number of classics to the rock repertoire. My favorite is the sensational "Twenty Flight Rock," the song that quite literally first attracted John Lennon to Paul McCartney in 1957. (Check out Paul's great cover version of this song on his Russian album). "Summertime Blues" is another outstanding song which is as vibrant as it was when first released 45 years ago.Eddie Cochrane is sadly under-appreciated today, but this album will give you an idea of his talent and foresight. He wrote his own songs, played a pretty mean guitar and was a pioneer of rock. This is a feel good album and highly recommended."
Another great talent of the 50's dead too soon...
William E. Adams | Midland, Texas USA | 06/30/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Eddie had three years in the rock limelight before he died in a car crash in the spring of 1960, but most people born after that date only know him because of the enduring popularity of "Summertime Blues." He wrote and recorded many other worthy songs, and most of them are on this collection. This CD, on first listening, does not impress as much as do CD's of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, Rick Nelson, and Jerry Lee Lewis (among the important young rockers of the same period) but it grows on you, and rewards repeated listening. Eddie was probably the best guitar player of that group, although Ricky, Buddy and Jerry were more memorable vocalists, and Valens showed signs of genius in his brief six months as a professional performer. If you want to have a representative collection of late-50's rock, you have to have all these guys in your stash, along with Elvis and Fats Domino and Little Richard and many others. Like Buddy, Eddie actually was more popular and enduring in England than in the states. In the final year of his life, he spent many months there on tour, and his style influenced members of the Beatles and Rolling Stones almost as much as Holly's did. If you like those other guys from the era, listen to Eddie Cochran too. You'll be glad you did."
Eddie Cochran-The best he ever sounded!
Raymond Lindstrom | Laughlin, NV | 04/18/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I don't know what they are doing these days to capture the sound of poor recordings in the 50's or whether in those days there were some places ahead of their time...but, the cuts on this CD are absolutely sensational. They sound as sharp as you can get. No muddy sounds or distortions. Computer clean-up of this stuff has to be the answer. And, this original material sounds just great on this supurb CD. We all know the songs, the great teen hits "date, late, eight." Ahh, the simpler times of songs about girls and cars. That was it. And this CD is the best."
EDDIE WHO INSPIRED THE WHO
ALAIN ROBERT | ST-HUBERT,QUÉBEC | 09/26/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"You can resume EDDIE COCHRAN very well with one cd.After all,when he died he was only 21 years old.This selection is almost the same if you except 5 songs of the LEGENDARY MASTER SERIES released in 1990.His best songs are there:SUMMERTIME BLUES was of course a favorite of THE WHO ,who often featured it in their concerts.I am particularly fond of JEANNIE,JEANNIE,JEANNIE,C'MON EVERYBODY and the marvellous SOMETHIN'ELSE with it's great shuffle,a trademark of EDDIE.If you are interested in rock's early days,you'll enjoy this cd."