Welcome to this week’s Release Round-Up!
Second Disc Records and Real Gone Music have paired two 1972 albums from the legendary Johnny Mathis as an expanded 2-CD set. Both albums were produced by Jerry Fuller and make their standalone CD debuts here. The First Time Ever (I Saw Your Face) had not only Mathis’ rendition of the hit popularized by Roberta Flack but also classics introduced by The Stylistics, America, and The 5th Dimension, as well as beloved themes from The Godfather, Summer of ’42, Brian’s Song, and Kotch. Neil Diamond’s hits were celebrated on Song Sung Blue, along with favorites by Gilbert O’Sullivan, Carpenters, and The Bee Gees. Three bonus tracks have been added: the single of Henry Mancini’s “Sometimes” and the outtakes “Remember the Good” and “Morning Has Broken.” The First Time Ever (I Saw Your Face)/Song Sung Blue features rare photos of the artist and liner notes by our own Joe Marchese based on fresh interviews with Johnny Mathis, Jerry Fuller, and Thom Bell.
Also arriving this week is the standalone CD premiere of Johnny’s first album of 1973. Me and Mrs. Jones proved to be one of his most eclectic albums of the decade. Reuniting him with Jerry Fuller, the LP found the singer exploring a variety of styles and genres. In addition to the title track from Gamble and Huff’s Philly soul hit factory, Me and Mrs. Jones found Mathis singing the best of Broadway (“Corner of the Sky” from Pippin), Hollywood (Smokey Robinson and Michel Legrand’s “Happy” from Lady Sings the Blues) and the pop scene (Harry Nilsson’s “Remember,” David Gates’ “Sweet Surrender”). The album’s AC hit single, “Soul and Inspiration/Just Once in My Life,” brought together two of The Righteous Brothers’ most memorable songs in one dynamic medley. This expanded edition boasts four bonus tracks: the B-side of the medley, Jerry Fuller and D’Arneill Pershing’s “I,” plus the outtake “Pieces of April,” and both sides of the single “Take Good Care of Her” b/w “Walking Tall” from the movie of the same name. Joe’s new liner notes feature fresh quotes from Mathis and Fuller.
John Lennon, Imagine: Ultimate Collection (Apple/UMe)
Imagine: Ultimate Collection Super Deluxe Box (4CD/2BD): Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
Imagine: Ultimate Collection Deluxe Edition (2CD): Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
Imagine: Ultimate Mixes Deluxe Vinyl (2LP): 2LP: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
Imagine: Ultimate Mixes (1CD): Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
John Lennon’s second solo studio album, and arguably his most beloved, is returning from Apple and Capitol in a lavish new 4CD/2BD box set. This set celebrates the classic 1971 album which introduced the world to “Imagine,” “Jealous Guy,” and “Gimme Some Truth” as well as the blistering “How Do You Sleep” and rollicking “Oh, Yoko!” In addition to box set and digital options, a 2CD Deluxe Edition, 1CD remaster, and 2LP black vinyl edition will all be released. A number of bundles – some including DVD and Blu-ray remastered editions of the documentaries Imagine and Gimme Some Truth – are available now from Universal’s webstore. Get the full specs here!
Real Gone Music has the first-ever comprehensive collection of the Four Tops’ post-Motown tenure at ABC/Dunhill. The Complete ABC/Dunhill singles boasts 33 sides on 2 CDs; 27 of the tracks have never been on CD in their correct single versions and 13 of the songs have never appeared on CD at all. The first seven songs are in mono, the rest are in stereo. Ed Osborne provides the new liner notes, and Aaron Kannowski has remastered. Read more here!
The former Fleetwood Mac frontman is looking back on his career with this collection of his finest solo works. Solo Anthology – The Best of Lindsey Buckingham will be available as a 3-disc set on CD and digitally and also as a single disc “highlights” release. A 6-LP vinyl edition is slated for November 23. The 3-CD version offers original and alternate versions of songs from Buckingham’s solo albums including Law and Order (1981), Go Insane (1984), Out of the Cradle (1992), Under the Skin (1996), Gift of Screws (2008), Seeds We Sow (2011), and his most recent release, the joint album Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie (2017) plus soundtrack appearances and a handful of live solo versions of Fleetwood Mac tunes. Two previously unreleased tracks round out the set: “Hunger” and “Ride This Road.” Read more here!
This 2-CD, 35-track set gathers up all of the Billboard Pop hits from “The Mouth of the South,” Joe Simon. Culled from various labels, Step by Step includes “The Chokin’ Kind,” “Drowning in the Sea of Love,” and much more. Grammy-nominated producer Mitchell Cohen has written the liner notes, which include new quotes from the artist. The collection has been newly remastered by Mike Milchner at SonicVision. Read more here!
Real Gone continues its ongoing series of Grateful Dead’s Road Trips. Real Gone has been bringing these releases to general retail in reverse order and are now up to Vol. 4, No. 1: Big Rock Pow-Wow ’69. The 3-CD set features two shows recorded at the Big Rock Pow-Wow, a rock festival held at the Hollywood Seminole Indian Reservation in West Hollywood, Florida on May 23-25, 1969. The Grateful Dead recordings come from May 23 and 24, just a little under a month before the release of the band’s third studio album, Aoxomoxoa. Several songs from that LP are featured at these shows including “St. Stephen,” “Doin’ That Rag” and “China Cat Sunflower.” The shows were recorded by Owsley (Bear) Stanley.
With four top ten Pop hits (including two No. 1s) and over 10 million albums sold, Sugar Ray still occupies a place in the heart of listeners from the 1990s and 2000s. RT Industries has compiled those hits plus favorites selected by the band (such as a cover of Joe Jackson’s “Is She Really Going Out with Him?”) on this 14-track compilation.
The former Journey frontman returns to music with his first solo album since 1994 including original songs and a cover of The Beatles’ “I Need You.” Available on CD, vinyl, and digital platforms. The Target-exclusive edition, available on both CD and vinyl, offers a generous five bonus tracks.