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Tony Bennett's All-Time Greatest Hits


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Audio CD, October 14, 1997
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Editorial Reviews

Album Notes Personnel: Tony Bennett (vocals); Ray Charles (vocals); Tommy Flanagan (piano).Audio Remixer: Tom "Curly" Ruff.Recording information: 1950-1972.Ensemble: Ralph Sharon.Photographer: Don Hunstein.Arrangers: George Siravo; Glenn Osser; Johnny Mandel; Al Cohn; Marty Manning; Percy Faith; Ralph Burns; Ralph Sharon; Ray Conniff; Robert Farnon ; Torrie Zito; Frank DeVol; Peter Matz.For those not inclined towards Bennett's 4-disc anthology 40 YEARS , this two-LPs-on-one-disc collection from 1972 is a solid survey of all the singer's hits going all the way back to 1951, including "Rags To Riches" and the castanet-driven "Boulevard Of Broken Dreams." 1962's "I Left My Heart In San Francisco" makes it's appearance midway and the increase in confidence and authority in Bennett's performances after this milestone is readily apparent. From this moment on, Tony Bennett "owns" just about any song he sings, as his definitive versions of "Who Can I Turn To," "The Shadow Of Your Smile" and "For Once In My Life" amply demonstrate. Portions of this page Copyright 1948 - 2012 Muze Inc. All rights reserved.

1. Because Of You
2. Rags To Riches
3. Stranger In Paradise
4. Sing You Sinners
5. Just In Time
6. The Boulevard Of Broken Dreams
7. Love Look Away
8. Firefly
9. Put On A Happy Face
10. I Left My Heart In San Francisco
11. I Wanna Be Around
12. This Is All I Ask
13. Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)
14. The Shadow Of Your Smile
15. Smile
16. A Time For Love
17. For Once In My Life
18. Something
19. (Where Do I Begin) Love Story
20. Maybe This Time

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 14, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B000002AJH
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,962 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

57 of 60 people found the following review helpful By Jon Warshawsky on November 8, 2001
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Sinatra referred to Tony Bennett as the 'best singer in the business', and after listening to many of Tony's albums it is hard to argue. This 'best of' collection from 1972 includes some magnificent recordings, including 'I Left My Heart in San Francisco', 'Love Look Away', a heart-stopping 'I Wanna Be Around', a rousing 'Sing You Sinners' and more. It is a time capsule album of Tony's earlier career.
While his voice is sensational -- it deepens into something beyond compare by the early 1960s -- a few of the songs are the product of their era, notwithstanding Tony's talent. The early 1960s style of adding a background choir and additional echo has a kind of charm, but it sounds like -- well, the early 1960s. The good news is that apart from a 'Boulevard of Broken Dreams' that sounds like a bad cabaret tune and a cover of George Harrison's 'Something' that really isn't for Tony (he's a Cole Porter, Gershwin, Johnny Mercer, Rodgers & Hart kind of guy -- best when the music swings or in great ballads), most of this album is a real treasure.
However -- some of the albums from which these songs were culled are worth buying. 'I Wanna Be Around' is a superb album, as is 'Who Can I Turn To'. And, if you enjoy live music, the 1962 Carnegie Hall Concert is an outstanding recording that includes much of the classic material here, in rousing renditions. Two CDs of live Tony Bennett in 1962 -- what else could you want?
If you are looking for an introduction to Tony Bennett, or just appreciate his powerful voice and inimitable spirit -- the guy always sounds like he's smiling into the microphone, and that happiness comes through -- you should enjoy this album. If a couple of the tracks sound a bit like kitsch, so be it.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Beninato VINE VOICE on April 8, 2000
Format: Audio CD
As I'm only 33, a lot of people laugh when they see this CD in my collection (particularly among the Def Leppard and Live CD's!). My mother adored Tony Bennett, and his greatest hits collection was a perennial feature in the car and home 8-track players. I've always loved this record--Tony had (and still does have) an incredible voice, and the songs featured here are the creme de la creme of pop songwriting in the 40's and 50's, including the immortal "I Left My Heart In San Francisco" and my two personal favorites, "Rags To Riches" and "Just In Time". Of course, having to be "cool" as a teenager I denied Tony for many years. So laugh away if you want, kids--this album rocks in the truest sense of the word! Long live Tony Bennett!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By "gromit_the_dog" on April 28, 2001
Format: Audio CD
I suppose I'm like many latent Tony Bennett fans. I'd heard of him before he did the unplugged album, but as he got more exposure my interest in him was piqued. Let me cut to the chase: Tony has a great, wonderful voice, and this album really shows it. I bought the "Hot and Cool" album (Ellington tribute) when it came out and I've enjoyed it, but I wanted to get an album from his early days, when his voice had power to burn. You'll certainly get it with this album. Find yourself a really good set of speakers, turn the sound up, and listen to Rags to Riches and Stranger in Paradise. I guarantee you'll be favourably impressed. There are a couple of arrangements that verge on shmaltzy, but that's a small price to pay to hear Tony sing with such colour and joy in his voice. It's a wonderful album and a great way to get to know Tony Bennett, especially if all you may have heard is later stuff.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 2, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Aside from the classic "I Left My Heart In San Francisco," Tony Bennett's vocalizing is an acquired taste. But Bennett does grow on you. Initially, his voice is a bit grating and the listener may grow concerned that the veins in his neck might pop at any minute. Eventually, however, you realize that while he is not an exceptionally smooth vocalist (like Como or Damone), he is nonetheless a very good one. He has a powerful voice and, while he at times awkwardly tries too hard to swing like Bobby Darin (who, in my opinion, stands alone as a master uptempo vocalist), he usually has good taste in his choice of songs. Tony Bennett may not have the looks, panache, or magnetism of Bobby Darin or Dean Martin, but like his two paisanos, he can sing. Add his name to a list that also includes Vic Damone, Perry Como, Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine, Nick Lucas, Al Martino, Russ Columbo, Buddy Greco, Julius LaRosa, etc., and you have a veritable who's who of American popular singers, all of Italian descent. His "Greatest HIts" CD is a must for any serious collector of American popular song.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Hans Castorp VINE VOICE on December 8, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Some of the reviews I've read here do hit the nail on the head.These "Greatest Hits" cover 20 years (1951-71), and,perhaps inevitably, some of them may not stand the test of time.Others have been recorded by others,perhaps better. Still,with 22 cuts,some are bound to be great and they are! "Stranger in Paradise" is interpreted well here. Ditto for most of the others. I actually like the Spanish sounding "Boulevard of Broken Dreams".You can imagine a flamengo dancer castenetting in the background. There are three in a row that Tony owns: "Put on a Happy Face",among the most zesty numbers ever,"San Francisco",one of my all-time favorites,and I still visualize the cable cars and spectacular views when I hear it, and "I Wanna Be Around",the great comeback from someone who's been unceremoniously dumped."Shadow of your Smile" is top notch,as is "Smile",though Nat Cole's version is far better. All the rest are right on the money,though "Something",which Sinatra actually recorded twice,never hits the mark for anyone,including the late George...Strongly recommended for the over thirty crowd looking for a change from the blaring noise usually in the top 40.
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