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Essentials

63 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 10, 2006
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$5.00 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Essentials + 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: Best Of The Grass Roots + The Very Best of the Rascals
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Editorial Reviews

Digitally remastered compact anthology of the popular 1960's hitmakers who were regular visitors to the Top 40 charts of that decade. Includes "Crimson & Clover", "I Think We're Alone Now", "Mony Mony", "Sweet Cherry Wine", "Crystal Blue Persuasion" and many more.

1. Hanky Panky
2. Say I Am (What I Am)
3. I Think We're Alone Now
4. Mirage
5. Gettin' Together
6. Mony Mony
7. Crimson and Clover
8. Sweet Cherry Wine
9. Crystal Blue Persuasion
10. Ball of Fire
11. She
12. Draggin' The Line

Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 10, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B0000630Z9
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,003 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Steve Vrana HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on August 8, 2002
Format: Audio CD
This is a concise, if not thorough, collection. All the big hits are here. In fact, only three of the Shondells Top 40 hits ("It's Only Love," "I Like the Way" and "Do Something To Me") are missing. In addition you get James' lone solo Top 10 hit "Draggin' the Line." [Footnote: James was still only 24 when "Draggin the Line" was a hit--he was only 16 when he first recorded his biggest single "Hanky Panky"!] Like other Essentials releases, Rhino has simply taken an earlier compilation (in this case 1990's 27-track Anthology) and repackaged the material. This is only an improvement if you want nothing but the big radio hits--and they're all here, but at 35 minutes my only complaint is that the lesser hits weren't also included.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By H. Gutierrez on June 5, 2002
Format: Audio CD
As with most other Rhino comps, this one also includes the edited version of "Crimson & Clover." If the full version were included, this would be a 5-star review, because all the other tracks I would consider "essential" are there. And the remastered sound is great--truly an improvement over previous releases.
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37 of 42 people found the following review helpful By Phil Rogers on September 25, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This is one amazing band as far as their ability to reinvent themselves on every release of a single - kind of the way the Doors did on every song of their 'Strange Days' album, though of course in a very different way.
They started out with the lanky, strongly original proto-garage tune "Hanky Panky" - at about the same time the Young Rascals launched their smoky, similarly styled "I Ain't Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore". [Gritty, intensely moving and sonically astounding as it was, the (Young) Rascals' song crashed and burned on the charts, though not in the minds of forward-looking listeners. But they tamed their sound a bit on "Good Lovin'", went straight to the top, and stayed there for several years.]
The Shondells' (as they were announced by DJs at the beginning of their equally long run) had a second hit with "Say I Am" - which didn't grab me during its short tenure on the charts (I later realized my mistake). This one is amazingly inventive in terms of melody and vocal delivery; and with those jazzy riffs/rhythms that accompany the lyrics, the song moves through its paces relentlessly, confidently buoyant throughout.
"I Think We're Alone now" was the obvious follow-up to the Turtles' "Happy Together". [This is especially true since the Turtles' own next effort "She'd Rather Be With Me", was such inferior product - a very bad-sounding song possessing none of the gorgeous guitar playing of their short-lived folk-rock phase - early in their career the Turtles were among the best in the world.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Praise The Lord, Always on October 13, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The quality of this CD is good and for one that was raised on the music of the 40's & 50's, including pop, western, swing and the real Rock & Roll, this group is only one of the few that I sort of enjoyed of the late 60's & early 70's. This CD has 12 tracks, of which I deleted 6 as I didn't care for them and the version of "I Think That We're Alone Now", doesn't sound like the version that was released for air play and sadly this happens far too often when they put these CDs together. For the Shondells fans, I am sure that they won't be happy with only 12 tracks and for myself, I wished that they included another song, of which I can't recall the name, but it is about the dirty waters of Boston. Don't know if they were singing about our politicians or not. +JMJ+
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By silky69 on June 19, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This album is filled with wonderful oldies. They include: 1. Hanky Panky
2. Say I Am (What I Am)
3. I Think We're Alone Now
4. Mirage
5. Gettin' Together
6. Mony Mony
7. Crimson and Clover
8. Sweet Cherry Wine
9. Crystal Blue Persuasion
10. Ball of Fire
11. She
12. Draggin' The Line
Every song is great. My favorites are I THink We're Alone Now and Draggin the Line along with Mony Mony and Gettin' Together, but they are all great songs and ones you will be glad to play "over and over... crimson and clover" Ha Ha
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mic Lee 63 on February 15, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
if you are a fan of Tommy James and the Shondells, this is for you! All the hits are here, Mony Mony, Crystal Blue Persusion, I think we're alone now, Draggin the Line and more!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By james gray on November 14, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
'mony mony', 'hanky panky', 'i think we're alone now', these were all early great Tommy James hits included on this cd. Then cam 'crimson and clover', 'sweet cherry wine', 'crystal blue persuasion', 'gotta get back to you' and the odd but likeable 'ball of fire' are also included on this cd. Tommy James wrote great pop singles and delivered them like he was delivering a great song. This is what probably made Tommy James a great pop songwriter, he wasn't too ambitious and seemed happy with creating great singles. So if you want all of these singles on one cd remastered, this cd is for you. Pleasant music for listening to while driving.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Bynum on March 20, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Tommy James & The Shondells

The Essentials (Rhino)

This is not a very in-depth representation of the group but these 12 tracks are the essential hits and as such, it is a very good CD. This has the right songs at the right price (under $7 in 2012). As a short overview of the group, this gets Five Stars.
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Essentials
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