You Don't Bring Me Flowers - Neil Diamond, Bergman, Alan
Forever in Blue Jeans - Neil Diamond, Bennett, Richard [G
Love on the Rocks - Neil Diamond, Becaud, Gilbert
Heartlight - Neil Diamond, Bacharach, Burt
Headed for the Future
Heartbreak Hotel - Neil Diamond, Axton, Hoyt
All I Really Need Is You
Though now known mainly for his middle-of-the-road balladry, Neil Diamond started his career in the '60s as a Tin Pan Alley pro who turned out a string of ballsy, folk-rock-styled classic Top 40 singles that may come as a ... more »surprise to anyone who's grown up with the image of Diamond as a sensitive crooner and Vegas showman. This 2 CD set contains all of his hits, but it isn't quite the definitive package that its title suggests. His early Bang singles ("Cherry, Cherry," "Kentucky Woman," "Solitary Man") and his later Columbia material ("You Don't Bring Me Flowers," "America," "Heartlight") appear in their original versions. But his mid-period MCA/UNI hits ("Sweet Caroline," "Song Sung Blue," "I Am ... I Said") are represented by live re-recordings from 1989 and 1992. --Scott Schinder« less
Though now known mainly for his middle-of-the-road balladry, Neil Diamond started his career in the '60s as a Tin Pan Alley pro who turned out a string of ballsy, folk-rock-styled classic Top 40 singles that may come as a surprise to anyone who's grown up with the image of Diamond as a sensitive crooner and Vegas showman. This 2 CD set contains all of his hits, but it isn't quite the definitive package that its title suggests. His early Bang singles ("Cherry, Cherry," "Kentucky Woman," "Solitary Man") and his later Columbia material ("You Don't Bring Me Flowers," "America," "Heartlight") appear in their original versions. But his mid-period MCA/UNI hits ("Sweet Caroline," "Song Sung Blue," "I Am ... I Said") are represented by live re-recordings from 1989 and 1992. --Scott Schinder
Barbara M. (Babe) from NEW YORK, NY Reviewed on 7/1/2007...
This is a 2-disk CD, and is complete with all inserts and booklet containing photos and lyrics for all the numbers.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
John D. from FARMERS BRNCH, TX Reviewed on 7/29/2006...
What was disappointing about this two-disc set is that he re-recorded some of his best songs, and they just don't sound the same as the originals.
2 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Needs the disclaimer: "LIVE versions of classic hits"
Eric V. Moye | New York, by way of Dallas | 11/27/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Don't get me wrong: I dig Diamond. I love his earlier work. Seeing him perform live was a great treat, and like some others, I don't think he can be overdone. Much of the great A.M. radio songs of the 1960's and early 1970's were from his pen and voice. "I Got the Feelin", "Girl You'll be a Woman Soon", "Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show" (more on that later) established his bona fides for a place in the Hall of Fame. Be forewarned though. In this album, I thought I had found the treasure I was looking for: Most of the stuff I grew up with in one place. However, I was abjectly disappointed to find too many of the songs I wanted were not the original versions I had come to love, but instead were live versions. I wanted the versions of the songs "Brooklyn Roads", "I Am I Said", "B.L.T.S.S." and "Sweet Caroline" like I remember them. Unfortunately, the versions here were all live. According to one of the critics, a full third of the album is. Some of these are just fine, but if you want originals, this is going to leave you searching elsewhere."
Diamond shines, but doesn't dazzle!
JC | Great Britain | 08/10/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"When I was a 12 year old boy, somebody bought me a double vinyl album by Neil Diamond called 'Diamonds'. I loved it and played it to death.20 years later I suddenly got the urge to hear those great songs again and scoured the amazon sites. Alas 'Diamonds' isn't mentioned anywhere so I settled for this CD instead.Imagine my horror when I played it and half the tracks were live versions (and weak ones at that!) I believe a live concert of your favourite artist is a great experience - when you are actually there - but rarely translates well to record.The beautifully arranged orchestrations are replaced by a band and the soulful voice is replaced by the weaker, less tuneful live version, with applause and Neils comments to the audience thrown in for good measure!The non-live songs are all excellent and he is a terrific singer - I just wish I could have had my 'Diamonds' back!"
5 stars for the songs, less one for the lame live recordings
campervan9 | San Diego, California United States | 02/28/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"You know, I was raised on Neil Diamond. He and John Denver (and Handel's Messiah at Christmas) were about the extent of recorded music in my parents' house until I discovered pop music (and Duran Duran) at age 10. For quite a while, I rebelled and went the other direction. Didn't we all?My loss. This 2 CD set contains 33 wonderful songs -- and not even all of Neil's gems. I could go on and on about the greatness of Neil's songs, but other reviewers have done that already, and most of you who visit this page know already. But consider the list: America, Sweet Caroline, Cracklin Rosie, Forever in Blue Jeans, You Don't Bring Me Flowers, Be, I Am I Said, Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show, Desiree, September Morn, Hello Again, Red Red Wine, Girl You'll Be a Woman Soon, Kentucky Woman. They're all here, and then some. I was particularly pleased with the inclusion of some of Neil's early stuff on these discs.BUT (doesn't it seem there's always a BUT?) for some reason, the middle chunk of the set is made up of live recordings from the early 90s, rather than the original studio recordings. And in these live recordings, the Neil we know and love has been replaced by fat, bloated, old Vegas Neil. Bad choice. Not all of the live recordings are truly terrible, but some are -- Sweet Caroline and Red Red Wine in particular stick out as sore thumbs.Still, until a better set comes along, this one is still far superior to the single-disc greatest hits. Unless you want to buy a bunch of albums (which, frankly, wouldn't be a bad choice), this set is an imperfect, but best available, choice."
Excellent collection spoilt by mediocre live versions
Michael Oliver | Manchester United Kingdom | 06/11/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this compilation after looking thru the track-listing and seeing that all my favourite Neil Diamond songs were included. Unfortunately 13 of the songs are mediocre live versions from Neil's early 90s concerts. Classics such as Cracklin' Rosie, I Am I Said, Song Sung Blue and Sweet Caroline are poor imitations of the original studio recordings of the early 70s. I recommend that you get your hands on the Neil Diamond Collection if you want to listen to these and others in their full glory. Clearly, Uni who own the rights to these songs didn't give permission to Columbia for them to be included on these CDs. So until all these songs are released on a single collection, you will have to do what I did, buy both and make your own compilation. Not cheap, but worth it for the ultimate Neil Diamond collection."