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Definitive Hits Original recording remastered

4.6 out of 5 stars 286 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, March 27, 2001
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

At last, a career-spanning collection from pop-jazz pioneer Herb Alpert! Includes The Lonely Bull; Mexican Shuffle; Whipped Cream; Lollipops and Roses; A Taste of Honey; Spanish Flea; Tijuana Taxi; Zorba the Greek; What Now My Love; So What's New; The Work Song; This Guy's in Love with You; Casino Royale; Route 101; Fandango; Rise; Rotation; Diamonds (with Janet Jackson); Keep Your Eye on Me , and Making Love in the Rain .

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In an era when elaborate wordplay and adventurous production were the order of the day, Herb Alpert made an impact barely uttering a word or breaking a mold, other than expanding the commercial parameters for pop instrumentalists. Dashing trumpeter Alpert and his Tijuana Brass scored five top-20 hits between 1962 (when "The Lonely Bull" climbed to No. 11 in the U.S.) and 1968 (when the vocal-driven "This Guy's in Love with You" cracked the top 10), racking up five No. 1 albums over the same period. The group's patented "Ameriachi" sound made up in south-of-the-border sprightliness what it lacked in innovation; the likes of "Spanish Flea" and "Casino Royale" possessed the kind of unshakable hooks that fit perfectly on top-40 radio sandwiched between Nancy Sinatra and the Mamas & the Papas. This 20-track overview serves up 13 selections from the Tijuana Brass's heyday and is rounded up with seven Alpert solo selections, including comeback hits from 1979 ("Rise") and '87 ("Diamonds"). --Steven Stolder

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. The Lonely Bull - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  2. Mexican Shuffle - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  3. Whipped Cream - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  4. Lollipops And Roses - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  5. A Taste Of Honey - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  6. Spanish Flea - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  7. Tijuana Taxi - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  8. Zorba The Greek - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  9. What Now My Love - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  10. So What's New? - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  11. The Work Song - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  12. This Guy's In Love With You - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  13. Casino Royale - Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
  14. Route 101 - Herb Alpert
  15. Fandango - Herb Alpert
  16. Rise - Herb Alpert
  17. Rotation - Herb Alpert
  18. Diamonds - Herb Alpert
  19. Keep Your Eye On Me - Herb Alpert
  20. Making Love In The Rain - Herb Alpert


Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 27, 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: A&M
  • ASIN: B00005ABMY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (286 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #741 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
At the time, this was a curious release from Universal. When this CD hit the streets, it coincided with Universal putting his entire back catalog out of print. We (at A&M Corner) later found out that he had secured the rights to all of his master tapes, and every release of his recordings except for Definitive Hits was now under his control. We would later see an entire series of album reissues, the Signature Series, covering nearly all of the Tijuana Brass catalog along with a couple of his solo recordings as well. These were released on the Shout! Factory label, distributed by Sony.

From a sound quality standpoint, this release is spotty at best. First, a mono version of "The Lonely Bull." Why? Apparently the original masters were lost, and we presume a fold-down from stereo was used as the source. (My mono cut of the LP has far more clarity.) But some of the earlier TJB tracks really don't sound all that good. "A Taste of Honey" is still noisy and lacks a clean bass or treble, but a lot of it is due to the studio having to "bounce" tracks in order to complete the recording (as they only had three-track capabilities back then). "Tijuana Taxi" is full of tape dropouts. (You'd have to have cotton in your head NOT to hear this!) We'd heard the dropouts on earlier releases (even on vinyl, such as, on the "Greatest Hits" LP) but they are more pronounced now, likely due to deteriorating tape.

For the record, I question whether some of these are indeed the original master tapes. Given the studio equipment available back then, courtesy of the three-track Gold Star Studios, they very well could be.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
While it's always a thrill seeing a new Herb Alpert CD, I kind of wonder about this one. Yet another Greatest Hits collection, but this one with a new twist. A 20-bit mastering system is used here, yet it's more of a two-bit sound. There are so many dropouts in songs like "Tijuana Taxi" and "The Work Song" that it actually detracts from the performance. The original master tapes of "Lonely Bull" were lost, so an enhanced mono version is used here.
One other complaint I have is that this should've been a 2 CD set. Alpert certainly had enough hits in his career to justify a 2 disc set. The TJB hits alone would've filled one CD. But the other tunes that are here a nice representation - albeit too short - of Alpert's long career. It's just too bad that a bad mastering job was done on this collection, because Alpert deserves better treatment.
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Format: Audio CD
Herb Alpert is one of those musicians that everyone has probably heard of, but not many really know when it comes to his music. Yes they have heard his pop hit with Janet Jackson "Diamonds", yes they know he is one of the brains behind A&M music, and yes they may even know an instrumental hit he had called "Rise". One reason for purchasing "Definitive Hits" was to get to know him better when it came to his music. From what I had heard, his horn playing was extremely good and I wanted to hear more. I figured purchasing a Greatest Hits collection would be a great starting point. I'm happy to report - I am very satisfied.
This CD does a great job at chronicling about 1/4 century of Herb Alpert's career - starting in 1962 and going out into 1987. The CD really covers three distinct phases of Alpert's career. The bulk of the CD (or first 13 songs), cover Herb when he was with his band, the Tijuana Brass. This really covers a period from 1962 to 1968. The second phase is Herb's "solo" period" from 1979-1982 (I assume he laid low while building A&M records in the 70s). The third phase is from the album "Keep Your Eye on Me" which was a phase in which Herb would embark on a collaborative period with established vocalist in a similar manner like Carlos Santana would do a decade later.
In Phase 1, the "Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass" period; the CD presents 13 songs that Herb did with his band - The Tijuana Brass. These songs have a very distinct Mexican feel to it and have a lot of horns. This is where you will get to know Herb Alpert's roots. The guy is one heck of a horn player. One thing that did disappoint me is that Herb wasn't a big songwriter and that his songs were all written by others.
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Format: Audio CD
I couldn't possibly give a compilation of these 20 classic recordings anything less than 5 stars because the quality of music contained here is so great. However, this disc has its' flaws which should be considered. First, while all of the selections are really good, not all of them would really be considered to be among Alpert's "definitive hits". I don't really think "Lollipops and Roses" or "So What's New" are quite as definitive as songs that are absent from this collection. ("A Banda", "Wade in the Water", "Jerusalem", "Beyond" and "North on South Street" come to mind immediately.) Second, it's hard to tell exactly what this compilation is supposed to be. If it's a hit singles collection, then why are some non-hits represented? If it's supposed to be a "definitive" overview then why are so many years of Alpert's recording career not represented? If it's supposed to be a chronological sampling, then why does "Casino Royale" follow "This Guy's in Love with You" and why do the songs from RISE follow the songs from FANDANGO? Third, this is the first Alpert collection to be remastered from the original masters and there's good news and bad news. Among the good news is that we finally get "The Lonely Bull" in mono and "Casino Royale" has never sounded better. The bad news is that the master for "Tijuana Taxi" is in very poor condition! It has tons of drop outs, particularly during the drum fills toward the end of the song. It would've been smart to have included that track in mono as well, especially since the mono mix is a little different and has never been available on CD before.Read more ›
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