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on May 24, 2000
While I feel this album was more a marketing ploy by her record label, Arista (it really is no more than her '75 Best Of album, with Coming Around Again hits added on), I didn't care. We fans of Carly, who know how rare a public singing appearance is for her, are overjoyed. Coming from the HBO concert, it was the first time I'd ever heard her live. Carly sounds great and sounds like she's having a good time (she actually was petrified giving the concert, but trooper that she was, she was not about to disappoint the people who had come to see her). All the hits are here: You're So Vain, Anticipation, The Right Thing To Do, Coming Around Again, You Belong To Me, etc., and including for the first time on any Carly album, Nobody Does It Better.
And while one can always argue and debate whether "this song should have been on" or "why did they include that song", what we have here on Greatest Hits Live is a fairly good representation of Carly's singles over the years. One wonders, then, where "Jesse" is.
The highlight of the album for me, however, is "All I Want Is You". This (live version) is my favorite all-time Carly song. It's upbeat, fast, Carly's playful on the vocals,and I can play it over and over and over and never get tired of it. I even work out to this song. I so wish Carly would do more uptempo songs like this! The second highlight is the wonderful way she intertwines "Coming Around Again" and "Itsy Bitsy Spider" into one song, with a chorus of children singing backup. You can't help but get caught up in it and find yourself singing along.
Two quibbles: "Two Hot Girls"? This wasn't even a hit off Coming Around Again. I really could have done without this song. Also, "Two Hot Girls" and "The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of (a great song) are SO almost identical to their album/studio versions that their inclusion is debatable in my mind.
Those minor complaints aside, Greatest Hits Live is a rare treat for all Carly fans (and all music lovers)and not to be missed. A live performance! We don't get those nearly often enough.
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on May 26, 1999
If you're a Carly Simon fan, and you could only afford one of her CD's this is the one to buy. For somone who suffered from the fear of performing live, she pulls it all together in this fantastick set. If you've ever visited Martha's Vineyard, you'll appreciate her final song, Never Been can feel the wind in your face as the ferry takes you to the gulls cry over head. Wonderful!
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on March 12, 2000
I never thought it could happen,a live album from Carly Simon.I was on stage with Carly at her last perfomance before this one in 1980 at the Stanley Theather in Pittsburgh Pa. You can see picture's I took of Carly when I was on stage with her,and my web-site on my members page. Carly had a bad night back then.It was great to see this concert on HBO,and purchase the CD. What a Joy to hear this live album.Carly is fantastic.From "Nobody does it better," to "Never been gone," from the Spy album.She never sounded better. "Do the walls come down," from the" Coming around again"CD is even better on this record.Carly lets it all out. This CD went gold,and I can see why.What a great comeback.I love the line in "The stuff that dreams are made of,to "take another picture" of your life.Also the end of Anticipation."These are the good old days," It's so true.Right now is the good old days,and this concert sure was a good old day for Carly.I'm looking forward to Carly's new record on May16.We've been waiting three years for another CD from the greatest female artist of our generation.Maybe Carly will tour again with this Album,and get voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame like she should have been voted in this year.
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on November 1, 2002
Opening up her live performance with the smash Bond theme "Nobody Does It Better", Carly knows what to give her listeners. One of her best singles, and probably one of the few great Carly tracks she didn't have her own hand in, it's a lovely opener into her most well known and well loved classic. I'm, of course, talking about the smoldering "You're So Vain". The brief "It Happens Everyday", leads to another undeniable Carly classic, the beloved "Anticipation". Other dazzling live performances of her hits follow, gems being "The Right Thing To Do", "You Belong To Me", and "All I Want Is You". Perhaps the strongest highlight is the seven minute epic version of her late 80's come back smash "Coming Around Again/Itsy Bitsy Spider". One of those rare live recordings that is actually good, a gem of a Carly album.
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In my younger days, I would fairly often buy an album quite spontaneously, and Carly Simon's Greatest Hits Live is one of my better purchases of that type. I was familiar with a few of her songs, especially You're So Vain, but I can't say I was ever really a fan, so I don't really know why I was drawn to this CD at the time I bought it. This album certainly made me a Carly fan when I listened to it, though. I love her uniquely flowing, soothing voice. Several of the tracks on this CD are immediately recognizable when you hear them: Nobody Does It Better (which served as the theme song for a James Bond movie), the aforementioned You're So Vain, It Happens Everyday, Coming Around Again, and Anticipation. I had forgotten how great a song Anticipation is, having gone so many years without hearing it. My favorite happens to be a song I do not remember having heard before, You Belong To Me; Simon seems to pack a great deal of emotion and feeling into it and makes of it something really special. All eleven songs are remarkably consistent in sound and presentation although spanning a total of 16 years, a fact which can be explained to some degree by the fact that Carly Simon wrote or co-wrote every track except for Nobody Does It Better. The 1970s material is more familiar and enjoyable than those tracks from the late 1970s and the early- to mid-1980s, but there's not a bad song to be found here at all. I had never realized until recently that Carly Simon had such a fear of performing live, and that makes me appreciate this live album even more than I already did. With such obvious musical talent and that richly melodic voice, Simon stands as one of the most amazing female vocalists of the last thirty years. She can sing about love and loss and still make you feel good doing so, which is quite remarkable in my book.
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on June 23, 1999
I never thought it could happen,a Live Album from Carly. I was on stage with Carly at her last performance in 1980 at the Stanley Theather in Pittsburgh,Pa. She had a Bad time,and asked if some of us would come up to help out. I ran to her,with about ten others. After that night,I never thought Carly would perform again.Boy was I wrong. What a joy to hear this CD. Carly is fantastic. From "Nobody Does it Better" to "Never Been Gone"from the Spy album.She never sounded better. My favorite is,"It happens all the time." when she sings"you use to adore me"it's so sad,but so true."Do the walls come down,"Carly lets it all out. This CD went Gold,and I can see why. What a great come back. My favorite line from a song has always been in "Anticipation". The line,"These are the good old days" Its so true,right now is the good old days. Thank you Carly for all the great Music you have given us over the years.
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on July 24, 2013
One of the best pop music composer / performers of the last century, this could be Carly Simon's best live album. One thing for certain is that her rendition of "Coming Around Again" combined with the traditional song "Itsy Bitsy Spider" is sheer genius on her part. I could listen to it daily and not tire of it.

Paul Baragona Raleigh, NC USA
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on April 13, 2000
I was a little unsure of buying this CD at first. I relented and did purchase the CD and it is absolutely wonderful. Several of Carly's best songs are included and have a great, different sound to them with the live recording to them. The best on the CD would have to include; Nobody Does it Better, Your so Vain, Anticipation, and Two Hot Girls on a Hot Summer Night. The Coming Around Again song was in my opinion unwisly put together with Itsy Bitsy Spider, but if the CD has any demerrit, this would be it. Any fan of Carly Simon should get ahold of this CD as soon as they can, it's money well spent.
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on June 5, 2013
I keep forgetting that Carly Simon isn't quite a kid any more. This live recording, made at Martha's Vineyard is great. Also - the fidelity and channel separation is good, unlike some live recordings.
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on October 4, 2002
Conquering a chronic fear of live performing, Carly Simon's sole concert performance following the release of her 1987 set "Coming Around Again" at Martha's Vineyard was recorded for this record (and for video).
Simon's profile had undergone a minor resurgence at this point. The title track from her most recent album had become a Top 20 hit (her first for six years), and had appeared on the soundtrack for the Jack Nicholson movie "Heartburn". It seemed appropriate to mark the occasion.
She sounds fresher in a live environment - occasionally on her studio records, her voice can sound grating and self-congratulory - and she has fine support from her band.
In most cases, Simon doesn't tinker with the original arrangements, and this is not necessarily a bad thing - at this point, it was difficult to compile a greatest hits album for this artist given the record company-hopping she'd indulged in. "You're So Vain" benefits from some spirited backing vocals, but "Nobody Does It Better" and "Anticipation" are very faithful interpretations of her 70s hits.
Other hits featured include "The Right Thing To Do" and a particularly spirited version of "You Belong To Me" which actually improves on the original.
Aside from the 70s hits, you also get two fairly obscure numbers which are worth hearing again. "It Happens Every Day" from 1983
boasts a pretty, country-ish melody with some sweet harmony vocals, but the lyrics deal with disappointment and marriage dreams shattered. "Never Been Gone", from her 1979 record "Spy", is a lovely, wistful little tune.
The rest of the album turns its attention to her most recent set "Coming Around Again". That's OK when it comes to the singles (the charming "Coming Around Again"; the saucy "All I Want Is You"), but that record's material was, to say the least, uneven, so the handful of its album tracks performed for this collection act as little more than pleasant filler.
This is a solid performance set, and a curiosity piece considering Simon's dislike for touring, and most of the hits are present and correct. If you're looking for a complete collection of her original singles, I would direct you toward "Nobody Does It Better" - but this is worth hearing.
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