Welcome to this week’s Release Round-Up!
Johnny Mathis’ first album of the 1980s, Different Kinda Different, arrives today in an expanded edition from TSD & Real Gone Music. Mathis ushered in the decade with one of the most romantic and sensual albums in his extensive discography. Different Kinda Different teamed him once more with Jack Gold and Gene Page for a set that lived up to its title as it spotlighted numerous new songs. Two sizzling pop-soul duets with Paulette McWilliams, “Different Kinda Different” and “I’d Do It All for You,” are at the heart of an eclectic album that also features tunes by Sammy Cahn, Teddy Randazzo, and Steve Dorff, plus a pair of standards (“Deep Purple,” “Temptation”), the timeless disco anthem “I Will Survive,” and the haunting film theme “With You I’m Born Again.” This definitive Expanded Edition of Different Kinda Different features nearly an entire album’s worth of bonus tracks – nine in total. Everything has been remastered by Mike Piacentini at Battery , and the deluxe booklet features Joe Marchese’s liner notes drawing upon brand-new interviews with Johnny Mathis and Paulette McWilliams.
Our new two-for-one collection features The Voice of Romance’s 1976 and 1977 albums with producer Jack Gold and arranger Gene Page. On these albums, Mathis saluted songwriters including Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield (“The Hungry Years”), Alan O’Day (“Do Me Wrong, But Do Me”), Stephen Sondheim (“Send in the Clowns”), Marvin Hamlisch and Ed Kleban (“One”), and the team of Michael Masser and Gerry Goffin (“Do You Know Where You’re Going To,” “I Always Knew I Had It in Me”). I Only Have Eyes for You introduced Johnny’s longtime concert favorite “Yellow Roses on Her Gown” and the Christmas perennial “When a Child Is Born” as well as acclaimed singer-songwriter Harriet Schock’s “Ooh, What We Do.” Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me found Mathis saluting his Columbia labelmate Barbra Streisand with the romantic “Evergreen,” breathing new life into the vintage standard “All the Things You Are,” and giving a classy spin to the Annie anthem “Tomorrow” in one of the song’s first covers. Joe has written the new liner notes based on interviews with Mathis and Schock, and Mike Piacentini has remastered at Sony’s Battery Studios.
Chicago, Chicago Transit Authority: 50th Anniversary Remix (Rhino)
Chicago has enlisted engineer Tim Jessup to remix the band’s classic debut in celebration of its 50th anniversary. Available in 1CD, 2LP, and digital formats, as well as a limited-edition, numbered version of the 2 LP set on gold vinyl available exclusively through Rhino.com. Read more here!
Rhino boxes up Rod Stewart’s fourteen albums for Warner Bros. Records as originally released between 1975 and 2001 in one no-frills box. The set contains Atlantic Crossing (1975), Night On The Town (1976), Foot Loose & Fancy Free (1977), Blondes Have More Fun (1978), Foolish Behaviour (1980), Tonight I’m Yours (1981), Body Wishes (1983), Camouflage (1984), Every Beat Of My Heart (1986), Out Of Order (1988), Vagabond Heart (1991), A Spanner In The Works (1995), When We Were The New Boys (1998), and Human (2001) in their original album sequences. Live albums from this period and the lost album Once in a Blue Moon (1992, released in 2009) are not included in this package.
Light in the Attic premieres a treasure trove of demos from maverick singer-songwriter-producer Lee Hazlewood’s early days. Lost for over 60 years, the 24 recordings on 400 Miles from L.A. date from the period in which Hazlewood shuttled back and forth from Phoenix (where he worked as a disk jockey) to Los Angeles in the hopes of selling a hit record. Among the demos heard here are a clutch of songs that constitute an early draft of Hazlewood’s 1963 conceptual masterwork Trouble Is a Lonesome Town (reissued and expanded by LITA back in 2013) as well as never-before-released compositions and tracks later reworked by the artist such as “The Old Man and His Guitar.” The package is adorned with a replica label for Viv Records, the label found by Hazlewood in Arizona. Available on CD, 2-LP, and digital formats as well as an online exclusive bundle with swag a-plenty. Watch for our review soon!
Prince, The VERSACE Experience: PRELUDE 2 GOLD (NPG/Legacy)
Fans of obscure Prince mixes and alternate versions are sure to delight in The VERSACE Experience (PRELUDE 2 GOLD). The collection of rare material was originally pressed up as a limited-edition cassette for Paris Fashion Week attendees in 1995 and featured remixes of then-unreleased tracks from The Gold Experience, alongside special edits and unheard music by The New Power Generation, The NPG Orchestra, and the jazz-fusion side-project Madhouse, all mixed together into a seamless experience. The VERSACE Experience (PRELUDE 2 GOLD) was recently re-released on limited-edition cassette for Record Store Day, but this marks its first wide release on digital, CD, and vinyl.
Prince, Emancipation (NPG/Legacy)
Prince’s epic 1996 album Emancipation returns to print as a 3CD set and makes its vinyl debut as a 6LP package. The album is packed with original songs reflecting on many of the themes most important to the artist (romance, family, sex, technology) as well as four choice covers (Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” the Thom Bell-composed Philly soul classics “Betcha By Golly Wow” and “La, La, La Means I Love U,” Joan Osborne’s then-current rock hit “One Of Us”).
Prince, Chaos and Disorder (NPG/Legacy)
Originally released in July 1996 as a surprise from Prince, Chaos and Disorder nonetheless reached the top 30 in the U.S. and the top 20 in the U.K. with no promotion. For this new reissue, it will be released in a 1-LP configuration on limited-edition purple vinyl and a 1-CD package. This reissue campaign not only brings the CD back on shelves after decades out-of-print, but also marks its debut on purple vinyl. Read more about all three Prince titles here!
Real Gone Music presents the starry soundtrack to 2010’s big-screen musical Burlesque, with Cher and Christina Aguilera, on vinyl for the first time. The campy cult classic soundtrack is pressed on hot pink vinyl and housed in a newly designed gatefold sleeve adorned with production stills from the film.
The Definitive Archies: Greatest Hits and More! is a new vinyl compilation that brings together 14 tracks (including six chart hits) from the classic bubblegum group featuring Ron Dante and Toni Wine, with production and songs from Jeff Barry and Andy Kim. Unlike previous retrospective collections, this one isn’t a dub from a vinyl disc. Within the package, the listener will find comprehensive sleeve notes from Ed Osborne. The record itself will be pressed on opaque blue vinyl and is limited to only 1,000 copies.
Real Gone Music brings the soundtrack to Martin Scorsese’s 2006 drama to vinyl for the first time in a kelly green pressing. The hard-hitting album features music by Roger Waters, The Beach Boys, Badfinger, The Rolling Stones, Roy Buchanan, The Allman Brothers Band, and other heavy hitters. It’s limited to 1,100 copies. Read more about Real Gone’s vinyl releases right here!
Real Gone Music reissues and expands Keely Smith’s You’re Breaking My Heart, the late chanteuse’s hard-to-find, U.K.-only album from 1965. Among its 12 songs are interpretations of Neal Hefti’s “Sunday Mornin'”, the Willie Nelson standard “Crazy,” Jimmie Hodges’ “Someday (You’ll Want Me to Want You),” and her original composition “I’ll Always Be in Love With You.” A previously unreleased demo of Tony Hatch’s “Call Me” is the bonus track, and the whole set has been remastered by Mike Milchner from the original tapes. Steve Hochman has penned the liner notes. Get more details here!
Promise Kept: The Complete Artists House Recordings collects, on 5 CDs and digital platforms, all four of late saxophone great Art Pepper’s albums for John Snyder’s Artists House label with bonus material. The four albums comprising The Complete Artists House Recordings feature Pepper’s takes on numerous jazz standards including “Stardust,” “Straight No Chaser,” “A Night in Tunisia,” “Body and Soul,” “You Go to My Head,” and “Desafinado.” All albums have all been remastered and expanded for this release, while an additional 11 session takes appear on a bonus fifth CD. In total, 19 bonus tracks are spread across the set, some of which have appeared on compilations and some of which appear for the first time. Read more about this collection here, and watch this space for a full review!
Various Artists, Country Music — A Film By Ken Burns: The Soundtrack (Legacy Recordings)
Filmmaker Ken Burns has tackled many subjects over the years, from the Civil War to baseball. His documentaries have garnered numerous awards over the years. In 2001, he took an in-depth look at the genre of jazz. Now, he’s exploring a different genre with Country Music, an eight-part, 16-1/2-hour documentary premiering September 15 on PBS. And as with Jazz, there is an accompanying soundtrack. The most expansive of these is a 5-CD box set which was released August 30. The 2-CD, 2-LP, 1-CD Wal-Mart exclusive, and digital iterations arrive today. All formats include many of the genre’s landmark recordings by artists such as Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Charley Pride, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, and George Jones. Learn more here, and watch for our full review soon!