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The Essential Neil Diamond
(2001)
Neil Diamond
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Label: Sony Music Canada Inc.
Duration: 2:21:29
Genre: Traditional Vocal Pop

Neil Diamond is one of a rare breed. As a songwriter, his music has been covered successfully by artists as diverse as the Monkees, Deep Purple, UB40, and Smash Mouth. But Diamond used that three-chord alchemy to build an unparalleled career as a performer as well. The 38 tracks on these two discs address those interlocking legacies in the most comprehensive manner yet, gathering his material from Bang! Records (including such pop staples as "Solitary Man,""Cherry, Cherry,""Kentucky Woman,""Red, Red Wine," and "I'm a Believer"), Universal (highlighted by "Sweet Caroline," Song Sung Blue,""Holly Holy," and "I Am ... I Said"), and Columbia for the first time. And if Diamond has veered toward the middle of the road on those latter recordings (such as "September Morn,""Heartlight," and the Streisand duet "You Don't Bring Me Flowers"), there remains a remarkable consistency throughout his work. As if to underscore the point, a number of mid-period hits (including "Shiloh,""Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show," and "Soolaimon") are featured as live recordings from fall 2001. These performances show that the sweet roughness of his voice has only grown in power and drama; it's small wonder that Diamond remains one of the top live draws in the business. Even if it overlooks Diamond's unlikely late-'90s hit country album (Tennessee Moon), this set manages to be both concise and thorough, the best introduction yet to an American music legend. --Jerry McCulley


TrackDuration
Solitary Man3:38
Cherry, Cherry3:36
I Got The Feelin' (Oh No, No)3:09
Kentucky Woman3:14
Girl, You'll Be a Woman Soon3:32
You Got To Me4:57
Red, Red Wine3:59
Thank The Lord For The Night Time4:15
I'm A Believer3:39
Sweet Caroline4:11
Song Sung Blue2:45
Holly Holy3:24
I Am... I Said
Cracklin' Rosie
Play Me
Morningside
Crunchy Granola Suite (live)
Brooklyn Roads
Soolaimon (live)
Captain Sunshine
He Ain't Heavy...He's My Brother
Yes I Will/Lady Magdalene
Shilo
Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show
America
Hello Again
Love On The Rocks
Captain Sunshine (live)
He Ain't Heavy... He's My Brother (live)
Yes I Will/Lady Magdalene (live)
Shilo (live)
Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show (live)
If You Know What I Mean
Beautiful Noise
You Don't Bring Me Flowers
Desiree
Forever In Blue Jeans
September Morn
I've Been This Way Before
Yesterday's Songs
Heartlight
Headed For The Future
You Are The Best Part Of Me
Original Release: 2001-01-01
Composer: Burt Bacharach, Gilbert Bécaud, Richard Bennett, Alan Bergman, Marilyn Bergman, Neil Diamond, Tom Hensley, Alan Lindgren, Bob Russell, Carole Bayer Sager, Bobby Scott
Producer: Neil Diamond
UPC: 696998568129