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Too many omissions.
on June 10, 2003
Not counting 1981's MEMORIES (which was a love song compilation), this is supposed to be volume 3 of Barbra's greatest hits and should have covered the years 1979-1989. Barbra returned to making high quality albums (GUILTY, YENTL, THE BROADWAY ALBUM) in the eighties, however she did also score enough hit singles during this period to merit this collection. Unfortunately, many of those hits are missing.
True, COLLECTION does contain some great hits and singles like "The Main Event/Fight" (#3 Pop, #5 Adult Contemporary), "A Woman In Love" (#1 Pop, #1 Adult Contemporary), "Guilty" (#3 Pop, #5 Adult Contemporary), "What Kind Of Fool" (#10 Pop, #1 Adult Contemporary), "Comin' In And Out Of Your Life" (#11 Pop, #2 Adult Contemporary), "Memory" (#52 Pop, #9 Adult Contemporary), "The Way He Makes Me Feel" (#40 Pop, #1 Adult Contemporary), "Somewhere" (#43 Pop, #5 Adult Contemporary), and "All I Ask Of You" (#15 Adult Contemporary). These tracks deserve to be present, but there are several annoying omissions that prevent this from being the definite collection of this time span.
Missing hits and singles that fall between 1979 and 1989 include: "No More Tears" (#1 Pop, #7 Adult Contemporary, #20 R&B), "Kiss Me In The Rain" (#37 Pop, #9 Adult Contemporary), "Promises" (#48 Pop, #8 Adult Contemporary), "Papa, Can You Hear Me" (#26 Adult Contemporary), "Left In The Dark" (#50 Pop, #4 Adult Contemporary), "Make No Mistake, He's Mine" (#51 Pop, #8 Adult Contemporary), "Emotion" (#79 Pop, #14 Adult Contemporary), "Send In The Clowns" (#25 Adult Contemporary), "What Were We Thinking of" (#32 Adult Contemporary), and "Till I Loved You" (#25 Pop, #3 Adult Contemporary). While these tracks vary in quality, I think most fans can agree that some of them have a place here.
These omissions are especially frustrating when you take into account that the remainder of the track listing. "By The Way" is a gorgeous song and one of my favorites, but it was released in 1975 and is out of place here ("By The Way" belonged on the MEMORIES compilation, if anywhere else). The two new songs are of mixed quality. The thrilling "Someone That I Used To Love" (#25 Adult Contemporary) is a relatively-obscure gem, with an amazing vocal from Streisand. Unfortunately, the Michael Bolton/Diane Warren-penned "We're Not Making Love Anymore" (#10 Adult Contemporary) is a bombastic and banal power ballad of the most empty theatrics. Giving the missing tracks and uneven new material, A Collection stands as little more than a wasted opportunity.