Smokey Robinson and the Miracles' 25-cut disc is the single most impressive one of Motown's Ultimate Collection series (which features 17 artists). Combining Smokey's endlessly inventive twists on romance (good and bad)... more » with the Miracles' handful of straight-up party hits, it showcases one of American pop's most sure-footed and touching acts. The frontman's prowess as singer, writer, and producer lights up each of these single mixes; less-celebrated tracks like "My Girl Has Gone," "(You Can) Depend on Me," and "The Love I Saw in You Was Just a Mirage" stand as tall as the many oldies-radio staples featured here. (For much more, including "Mirage's" unstoppable flip side, "Come Spy with Me," check out the four-disc 35th Anniversary box set.) Robinson and his collaborators, both in and out of the group, regularly injected undeniable emotion into their creamy constructions, making for a stack of tracks that remain as relevant as the contemporary creations of fans Lennon-McCartney and Bob Dylan. --Rickey Wright« less
Smokey Robinson and the Miracles' 25-cut disc is the single most impressive one of Motown's Ultimate Collection series (which features 17 artists). Combining Smokey's endlessly inventive twists on romance (good and bad) with the Miracles' handful of straight-up party hits, it showcases one of American pop's most sure-footed and touching acts. The frontman's prowess as singer, writer, and producer lights up each of these single mixes; less-celebrated tracks like "My Girl Has Gone," "(You Can) Depend on Me," and "The Love I Saw in You Was Just a Mirage" stand as tall as the many oldies-radio staples featured here. (For much more, including "Mirage's" unstoppable flip side, "Come Spy with Me," check out the four-disc 35th Anniversary box set.) Robinson and his collaborators, both in and out of the group, regularly injected undeniable emotion into their creamy constructions, making for a stack of tracks that remain as relevant as the contemporary creations of fans Lennon-McCartney and Bob Dylan. --Rickey Wright
Eric V. Moye | New York, by way of Dallas | 10/31/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Smokey Robinson may have been the greatest songwriter of his era. No one else was coming up with the splendidly clever turs of phrase as Smokey ("Just like Paliacchi did, I tried to keep my feelings hid. Laughing to the world outside, but in my lonely room I cried; the tears of a clown").Certainly, no one was able to combine the writing and the beautiful voice as he did. Back in the day, he was the one to sing the young Sistahs into a swoon! When someone put Smokey's "Ooh, Baby Baby" or "More Love" on the record player, the party was going to get serious! This disc has much of Smokey's best.However, having grown up with Smokey, there are songs that I think ought to be here, but are missing. There is no way that one disc can hold all the great Smokey Robinson & the Miracles hits (at least, given today's technology). Given that fact, this disc leaves out some of the "must" hits (in my opinion) recorded by the Miracles. Not here are "What's so Good About Goodbye" (which has some of his best lyric writing, in my opinion), "Doggone Right", "Here I Go Again" and a handful of others.I think the best Smokey Robinson collection is found in the release of the Smokey Robinson Anthology released by Motown. It does not cost too much more, is twoi discs, and is the best compemndium of this great body of work. As far as it goes, thoi"
You won't have to "Shop Around"....
The Fancy One | Westchester County, NY | 11/11/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This CD covers the career of Smokey Robinson and his Miracles very well. Even though I owned the Miracles' anthology several years ago, I noticed that a lot of songs I enjoyed from that anthology were omitted from this ULTIMATE COLLECTION. But that's okay. If you want the biggest and most popular hit songs that the group made from the beginning to the end, you'll find them here. From "Bad Girl" (one of my all time favorites) to "We've Come Too Far To End It Now", there's not a bad cut in the bunch. I've always loved Smokey's contradictory technique of writing love songs ("Just a minute ago, your love was here...all of a sudden it seemed to disappear...sweetness was only heartaches' camouflage, the love I saw in you was just a mirage") and clever little puns wrapped up into memorable tunes ("I'm a choosey beggar"). Smokey was one of the most amazing songwriters of the 20th century, and his best work was with his group, the Miracles. And we can't forget about Smokey's pristine falsetto voice sailing over the music, with the tight harmonies of Bobby Rogers, Ronnie White, Warren "Pete" Moore and Claudette Rogers Robinson holding it down in the background. Take a listen to the angst of songs like "Who's Lovin' You", "(Come 'Round Here) I'm The One You Need", "My Girl Has Gone", "Ooh Baby Baby" and "The Tracks of My Tears". Hear about the joys of being in love with "I'll Try Something New", "More Love" and "I Second That Emotion", and the comforting sounds of "Baby Baby, Don't Cry" and "You Can Depend On Me". Hear some motherly advice via "Shop Around", and just dance and have a good time with fun songs like "Going To A Go Go" and "Mickey's Monkey". Get this CD and you'll realize just why Bob Dylan once dubbed Smokey as "the greatest living poet"! With the exception of the fact that most of these songs are in monophonic sound when stereo recordings are available (which was a slight disappointment), this is a truly "Ultimate" collection!"
The MIRACLES...MOTOWN'S GREATEST GROUP,PERIOD !
willgee | ca | 05/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I dont care what others say about The Supremes,Temptations, or other Motown groups,the MIRACLES were the greatest group to ever come out of Motown. PERIOD! Why ? For one thing,they were the FIRST MOTOWN GROUP.It was their success that paved the way for all the others. Had they not been successful, there would have been no MOTOWN,and none of those other groups would have been found fame ,or at least not to the extent which they did.THE MIRACLES put MOTOWN on the map.They also had MOTOWN'S first million selling record,"SHOP AROUND".During the comapny's critical early years,1959-1964, They were BY FAR MOTOWN'S TOP GROUP,(despite what certain rewiewers have written,}with TOP 10 pop hits in 1961,'62',AND '63,the STAR ATTRACTION of the legendary MOTORTOWN REVUES,and the ONLY group that was bringing any serious money into the company. By 1964, the year that the SUPREMES, TEMPTATIONS, and the FOUR TOPS had their 1ST hits, THE MIRACLES were releasing theit 1ST DOUBLE ALBUM of GREATEST HITS !! Yet,while most of the others were inducted ,AS GROUPS, into THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME,The MIRACLES have been ignored. They chose to induct only Smokey. What a shame and insult to Motown's legendary First Group. The TEMPTATIONS ? great singers and dancers to be sure,but what most Temptations fans won't tell you is that 9 of their first 12 hits were actually written by The MIRACLES !! not just Smokey,THE WHOLE GROUP !! Don't believe it ? just look at the writing credits on the Tempts GREATEST HITS album ! ( How many MIRACLES songs did the TEMPTATIONS WRITE ? think about it}. THE SUPREMES ? They wouldn't have even GOTTEN on Motown if not for Smokey !! Stevie Wonder? He was discovered by Miracles member RONNIE WHITE !! THE MARVELETTES,MARVIN GAYE & MARY WELLS ?Yep, they wrote their stuff too.The MIRACLES were responsible,either directly or indirectly, for the success of just about EVERY EARLY ARTIST ON THE MOTOWN LABEL!! In fact ,of the five leading Motown groups ( Supremes, Temptations,4 tops,Miracles,J-5 }The MIRACLES were the ONLY ones that wrote their own material. Hopefully one day ,the ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME will induct them ALL-SMOKEY, BOBBY,RONNIE, PETE, MARV & CLAUDETTE ,not just SMOKEY , as they did.Want to know why they deserve it? Just listen to this CD.Then, read the writing credits.It will prove that SMOKEY wasn't the ONLY serious talent in this group. P.S.-Check out the MIRACLES' new "MOTOWN DEFINITIVE" DVD -available elsewhere on this site .... and see MUSICAL HISTORY in the MAKING !! "
Alluring and Hypnotic music, this is perfect!
C. Fields | Jackson, MS USA | 05/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I first saw this I wasn't sure if I wanted to buy it. I didn't think I was a big fan of The Miracles, but I went ahead and purchased it and wow, I am truly astonished. This is glorious. It is almost completely non-chronological but it is perfectly sequenced. I like when the remastering producers put the songs in order by the way they go together(unless its something like Sam Cooke's "Complete Specialty Recordings" there it shows his progression as a singer)and how they gel with each other. Smokey's smooth irresistable tenor is so seductive and the production is so hypnotic that you will get wrapped up in this world of wonderful music without realizing how long this is(over 70 minutes) and that is great! This is what is called HDCD it is remastered in 20 bit instead of the usual 16 bit(though the best of today is 24 bit) you will need a dvd player with HDCD capability to truly hear it like it is supposed to be heard. This is amazing and I am now a 'Miracles' fan for life. Absolutely Essential :)"
No question about it....still the best collection available
Paul Tognetti | Cranston, RI USA | 04/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Checked out all of the other available offerings on amazon.com and found that this is still the best available collection from one of the pioneer groups at Motown. And the price is right too. Although Smokey Robinson and the Miracles were never on Motown's "A" team in terms of chart success, they were nonetheless a reliable money maker for the label for over a decade. Lead singer Smokey Robinson, who wrote all but three of the selections on this disc, has long been regarded as one of America's greatest tunesmiths. From the first big smash "Shop Around" released in 1960 until their the final #1 hit "Tears of A Clown" in 1970, the Miracles were on the charts almost continuously. You'll find nearly all of their hits on this 25 track disc. Among my personal favorites are 1967's "More Love" and "Baby, Baby Don't Cry" from 1969. It is really quite amazing that the Miracles did not achieve even more chart success then they did. Thanks to the masterful pen of Smokey Robinson, the group had a seemingly endless supply of material to work with. Alas, Smokey left the Miracles and went solo in 1972. The Miracles went on to have a couple of more big hits over the next few years. And Smokey enjoyed some chart success on his own as well. In looking over some of the other reviews here on amazon.com the verdict is virtually unanimous. This is a five star selection!!!"