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The Very Best of The Doobie Brothers

4.6 out of 5 stars 208 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 13, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

Doobie Brothers, Very Best Of
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 13, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B000E9910W
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (208 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #652 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
The Doobie Brothers started out life as a greasy California biker band and took their name after a fondness for getting high. That ethic led to big riff rockers like "China Grove" and "Long Train Runnin'," but was lacking in the eventual slick sophistication of Michael McDonald's urbane soul. The original 1976 "Best Of The Doobies" included songs up to "Taking It To The Street," which meant that the number one "What A Fool Believes" was after the cut off date. This time The Doobie Brothers recognize the debut album a year before "Toulouse Street" by including one song, the acoustically flavored "Nobody."

Once McDonald joined, the band entered a second era and began to move more towards urban soul and Steely Dan jazz. Tom Johnston split after "Living On The Faultline" over the Doobies' new direction with Jeff Baxter and McDonald, and the resulting "Minute By Minute" bore little resemblance to the mellow hippy-vibes of "Rocking Down The Highway."

What this CD does is successfully chronicle both Johnston's biker bar band and McDonald's more soul dominated period. When the Doobies broke up after "One Step Closer," it put the band on ice until a 1989 Doobie Brothers reunion that yielded "Cycles" and a hit in "The Doctor." The band soldiered on minus McDonald, which meant that Johnston and Patrick Simmons were able to regain the steering wheel and make bar-band riff-rock once more. (Even if - IMHO - "Cycles" was pedestrian and "Brotherhood" worse, but "Sibling Rivalry" is OK.)

For my money, this double CD rates a full star over the 1976 set by virtue of the extra songs post "Taking It To The Streets" and remastered sound. But then again, I totally lost interest in the band when they started churning out factory made classic rock like "The Doctor.
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Format: Audio CD
Beware if you choose to purchase this set. I did without realizing that some of the songs are completely chopped up, namely 'Jesus Is Just Alright.' It sounds nothing like the album version. If the individual albums are remastered, I will burn my own version of the cd with unedited album cuts replacing the butchered songs here. Pretty pathetic and unforgivable when two discs are used to compile the set. The remastering is ok, but there is still not enough low end on the older songs. The Doobie Brothers are like Chicago. You get a recycled greatest hits package every year. Again, beware.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
With a two CD set, there should be no radio edits. In fact, the CD doesn't say so on the back cover. It's only after you start playing the CDs, or load them into I-tunes, that you find out. What a rip off!
There is simply no excuse for not including the full version of the songs listed. None!
This mars what could have been a fantastic collection over two CDs.
2 Comments 36 of 38 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Without saying so, what this 2-CD set includes is every Billboard chart single the Doobie Brothers ever notched - something no other album (except their boxed set) can boast. That means that 'Very Best Of' collects songs like 'Eyes Of Silver' (#52, 1974), 'I Cheat The Hangman' (#60, 1975), and 'Wheels Of Fortune' (#87, 1976) that were never included on similar previous collections. It even picks up 'Wynken Blynken and Nod' (#76, 1981) from the Sesame Street LP 'In Harmony.' And, two key non-hits ('Rockin' Down The Highway' and 'South City Midnight Lady') get tossed in, plus some stuff from the group's latter day albums.

What you don't get are enough of the Doobies' great album tracks like 'Spirit' (1974) or 'Nothin' But A Heartache' (1977). For those, you'll need to upgrade to the boxed set - which nevertheless omits 'Without You,' a perennial favorite previously included on 'Best Of The Doobies' and 'Greatest Hits.' Go figure....
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Format: Audio CD
Are you one of those people who disconnected the turntable and threw out all of your old albums when you started collecting CD's? I bet you regret it now, don't you? After all, `new' music isn't exactly what you expected, and it's painfully expensive to replace all of your old albums with digitized versions. This is especially true when it comes to baby-boomer bands like the Doobie Brothers. Back then, I'd bet that you owned at least four or five of their albums and if you're like me, you never (re) bought a single one on compact disc. Granted, the music did sound a bit dated after a while, but every now and then you'd hear one of their hits on the radio and wish that you could drag out the old vinyl and give it a listen. If you did bother, you'd have to wade through twelve studio albums to find the tracks that interest you, or settle for either of two greatest hits packages, each of which told less than half of the band's story.

Problem solved. In one neat little 2-CD set, "The Best of the Doobie Brothers" compiles virtually all of their best tracks in one package. Best of all, it captures the near schizophrenic nature of the band as they veer from classic rock to blue-eyed soul and then back again. The early Doobie Brothers leaned heavily on the songwriting abilities of Tom Johnston. Hits like "Listen to the Music," "Long Train Runnin'," "China Grove" and "Another Park, Another Sunday" were all written by Johnston, and they represent some of the best pop music from the early seventies. Once Michael McDonald came aboard, though, the band's dynamic shifted dramatically toward west-coast soul, featuring mega-hits such as "What a Fool Believes," "Takin' It to the Streets" and "It Keeps You Runnin'.
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