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4.8 out of 5 stars
Traveling Wilburys (2CD/1DVD, Deluxe Edition)
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116 of 125 people found the following review helpful
on June 17, 2007
I guess that based on some of the comments, I am one of the lucky ones. I pre-ordered this set in early May and it shipped a couple of days before the actual release date. It arrived a couple of days after the day of issue, but based on my Amazon price of $24.99 for the deluxe set, the same price as the standard edition in most of the "super-stores" in my area, that couple of days of waiting were not too bad.

I rate this set as five stars based on the price I paid. If I paid the near 40 Dollars for the limited edition set as it is priced locally, I might not feel the "extras" are worth 15 extra Dollars. The standard set of two CDs and the DVD are worth $24.99, and indeed, the deluxe set has the standard set inserted into a larger box. So for that extra 15 Dollars you get a small book with photos and narrative about the group, a couple of postcards with generic vintage photos (not of the group) announcing the "Wilburys are coming", and a couple of photos of the actual group playing. There is also a number of issue supposedly from 1 to 50,000, mine being 26, XXX for a set that was sent out before the release date.

The actual reason that I wanted this set, already being in possession of the original vols. 1 and 3 CDs was that DVD, and I was not disappointed. The documentary of the group's initial formation as well as the production of vol. 1 was great to watch. The production value is 1980s home video, but that was when this documentary was shot, so it is true to that era. There is no Dolby 5.1, but the basic stereo works for the low-tech group of rock and rollers. As I watched it, I wished I could have been a fly on the wall during that very short period of terrific synergistic creativity. The lack of ego from these rock-gods and the fun of this endeavor came through. I was so sad watching Roy Orbison laughing and cutting up knowing how short his time on earth was, but I think he had a great exit, going out on top. Seeing the speed at which these people came up with so many songs, the way they finalized them, and the trust in the final product was great. When you think of how many "lesser" albums required much more in time, effort and technology, it reminds you of how great this group really was.

The DVD transitions from the documentary into 5 music videos, again each only basic 2.0 stereo, but fine for this music. Two songs are from vol. 1, and three from vol. 3. I always liked vol. 1 more than 3, but watching the videos for "She's my baby" and "Inside out", gave me a new appreciation, as I watched the trading of lead vocals and the harmonizing in a (dare I say) "Beatle-esk" way. Seeing that empty rocking chair during Orbison's vocal in "End of the Line" was a heart-breaker, but I was glad the group paid respect to him after passing. Overall, this is a fine DVD from an era that never needed anything better than quality good enough for VHS.

The two CDs are as good as they can be technically and both have additional tracks tacked on. This is the all-in-one Wilburys product for those that were never able to get the original recordings all those years ago. The addition of the DVD makes this a no-brainer.

I know some are harping about what is not on this set, but I am rating it for what it is, not what it isn't. 5 stars are warranted for these two discs of great music, and video of a terrific group in action.
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39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on June 12, 2007
Wow, what a week! First Paul's "Memory Almost Full", now the Traveling Wilburys. And Ringo's "Liverpool 8" comes out this month too! Feels like the '70 all over again...Sorry to digress.
I just listened to/watched the "Deluxe Edition" CD and documentary and videos. It doesn't get much better than this! "Hall of Fame" vocals, loads of outstanding guitar playing, to-die-for harmonies, all high energy but laid back fun. George formed this group from close friends. Those relationships shine through on every track. The classy packaging reminds me of first opening "The Concert For Bangladesh" or "All Things Must Pass". Lots of postcards, pictures, and a very sturdy box and "Wilbury's History Book". My only complaint: No lyrics! Unbelieveable! Best moments...."Archive" footage of all sessions, especially Roy Orbison's vocals on "Not Alone Any More" and George leading the band through "End Of The Line". Pure Pleasure..............
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
As the author of the Jefferson Airplane book "Take Me To A Circus Tent" and a former radio disc-jockey, I am often asked to write and or discuss various music supplies and recordings from the 60's and 70's.

You've heard the terms "Supergroup", "Rock "Legends", and "Heavyweights." The Traveling Wilburys exemplified the terms but what made the project so extraordinary were some other expressions "Respect", "Fun", and "Egos in check."

The opening track "Handle With Care" may be the best song written in the past twenty years. The sound of the guitars, the Harrison vocal segments, and the blending of the words and music make this a song for the ages. It is an example of a tune so powerful and addicting that if the rest of the CD were blank justice wouldn't be served if we didn't purchase a copy. The consistency of the tracks the guys penned is a credit to their collective genius. "Heading For The Light" is another instant classic. The vocals are delivered with such sincerity you feel that you are in the recording studio. "Tweeter And The Monkey Man" is Dylan magic. At any moment Dylan could deliver a masterful performance. The song is as eventful as the wonderful words found on "Desire" and Blood On The Tracks." When the follow-up CD came out many unjustly only wanted to compare it to the debut. The new release will be a great excuse to rediscover some brilliant compositions. "The Devil's Been Busy", "Where Were You Last Night?", and "Cool Dry Place" are reason alone that the follow-up should have been placed on a higher pedestal.

The bonus tracks are more than a generous holiday gift. "Nobody's Child" which originally appeared as a charity song for the Romanian earthquake victims is a song that any artist should be honored to have on one of their releases. If you have enjoyed previously the myriad of versions of the song "Runaway", here is another one that will mesmerize you! I don't even have to mention the DVD bonus with the videos.

It's hard to imagine a world without George and Roy. It is very easy to imagine how special their families are!

Enjoy the music and be well,
Craig Fenton
Author of the Jefferson Airplane book "Take Me To A Circus Tent"
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
I'd just started converting to CDs when the first Taveling Wilburys album came out. For some reason I bought the album insead of the disc. That probably had to do with the fact that all of these long established musicians were recording long before discs became the norm and buying the album just came naturally. Harrison, Petty, Orbison, Dylon, Lynn and I'm including Keltner as well, because his drumming is absolutely essential to this group, came together and made some fine music. They did it simply and directly by working together as friends and fellow respected creators and craftsmen and forged a union that was so natural it defied the stardom they each enjoyed seperately. For me this is what making music is all about. It's this ability for a group of guys to sit together and hammer out the music and lyrics that will then be recorded and make it's way out into the world to touch people in ways subtle and profound. While Roy Orbison was missed for the "3rd" album his spirit was just as evident as a fresh breeze stirring your hair on a hot summer day. The release of the bonus material was also a natural progression for this set. Watching those vidoes and the recording sessions made time stand still for a little while. For the time I watched that footage Roy and George were still in this world.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on January 3, 2009
I know this set doesn't claim to be complete but why all the missing songs and videos?

I know of a Traveling Wilburys bootleg that is album length and full of demos and cover versions they could of taken from, perhaps on a fourth disc. Not to mention the B-Sides and extended songs.

But my real complaint is the cropped video. Why must they chop off everyones heads just to fill up your entire screen (1.78:1 new standard of course over the original 1.33:1). Anyone who knows anything about how a DVD's anamorphic widescreen works can tell you how it can better fill your widescreen tv, but in this case you're losing information on the top or bottom (or top AND bottom) of your screen. They do this to all the videos and the documentary. I'm shocked no one else has problem with this or has even noticed for that matter.

Back to what they 'left off': the Nobody's Child video. Hello!!?? What an oversight! But the most obvious piece they made that was left off this set is the original Wilbury Twist video. Presented here is the '2007 version', which is fine. But we catch a glimpse of John Candy and Eric Idle at the beginning of that version and wonder where they went. A quick visit to youtube and you can see the whole thing (while there you can see a bunch of other appearances the Wilbury members made around the 1988-1990 period and their inclusion is debateable as true Wilbury 'Canon' for inclusion here so I won't complain). Gone is Cheech Marin and Woody Harrelson as well as a bunch of other recognizable actors clowning around. What is then missing is a very valuable part of the spirit of this band, how much fun they are and how fun their music can be.

I ought to give this set only two stars for the glaring omissions and edited footage but the music itself is so good I can't give it less than three. In a world where people accept greatest hits albums over complete box sets (where your dollar spent on a particular band could be considered final) we allow these companies to make more and more of the same thing hoping that the next set will be just a little bit closer to being complete. So please when something is not 'complete' as it ought to be feel free to express it in places like this or even better to the record companies themselves or we'll never get what we want.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2007
After all the years of waiting we finally have the re-mastered versions. It was well worth the wait. The DVD is also really good, but I would like to have seen it in 5.1. The bonus tracks are good but it's a shame there were no more (Like the instrumental version of 'New Blue Moon') from the 'She's My Baby' CD single released around the time of Vol. 3. The version of 'Runaway' also differs from the version on the 'She's My Baby' CD single, there are now horns present, I guess this one has been re-mixed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 28, 2007
Volume 1 is the same classic pop-rock album we all know and love. The only difference besides the bonus tracks is that it all sounds better than ever. My favorites are the George Harrison-led "Handle With Care" and "End of the Line" and the amazing Roy Orbison showcase "Not Alone Anymore." I had forgotten the greatness of Harrison's "Heading for the Light," and his bonus track "Maxine" is a revelation. The Orbison-less Volume 3 is a shadow of its precursor, but tracks 2, 4, 6, 7, 9, and 10 have the Harrison/Jeff Lynne sheen of Volume 1, as well as plenty of great Harrison vocal contributions and some of Harrison's finest slide guitar and sitar playing. My pick for best track on Volume 3 is the hyper calypso/samba/bossa nova number, "New Blue Moon," featuring beautifully affected lead vocals by Harrison and some cool turns by Bob Dylan. As you can probably tell from my review, Harrison is my favorite of the Wilburys, as he is my favorite Beatle, my favorite singer-songwriter, and one of my favorite guitarists. Plus, he started the Wilburys. However, Harrison, Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty, and Bob Dylan ALL made beautiful music together. As for the deluxe set extras, if you're a true blue Traveling Wilbury fan like I am, the hardcover book and separate photographic material are a real treat to have. If the deluxe set is sold out, the standard set is just as fine, because you still get the DVD and bonus tracks and a smaller softcover booklet (it's still good to have that rather than no historical record at all!). Ultimately, it's all about the music.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on July 12, 2007
I have been searching used music stores everywhere for the Traveling Wilburys, and with no success. So when I saw the deluxe edition being released I was ecstatic. What a group! This is my favorite music buy all year.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 24, 2007
Thanks to Olivia Harrison for re-releasing the Traveling Wilburys CD's as well as this DVD set. The music is super -- even better than I remembered. For some reason which I can't remember, I never purchased the original recordings yet have been looking for these for years. Buy this set -- you won't be sorry. The songs are fabulous. How could they not be with George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison and friends? What talent. Put the CD on to play, close your eyes, and it's like some familiar and talented friends are jammin' in your living room!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
With all the junk the music industry continues to churn out, one wonders how the classic albums of the Traveling Wilburys could have been allowed to go out of print for almost a decade. Thanks to the remastering geniuses at Rhino Records, the Traveling Wilburys are finally back in the catalog, sounding better than ever.

Rhino' s engineers are fanatics when it comes to finding the original master tapes and remixing them in a way that is both state-of-the-art in terms of sound quality, yet at the same time faithful to the original production values. In the case of the Traveling Wilburys, the supergroup formed almost as a lark by Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, the late George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, and of course the late Roy Orbison, that sound was a stripped-down, down to earth rebellion against the overproduced, over commercialized studio productions being lavished upon mediocre talents by the major studios in the late 1980s, while at the same time legitimate singer-songwriter-performer talents were barely allowed into the recording studio. The first album was so breathtakingly stupendous that it was followed by a second, which if not quite the triumph of the first, was also better than 99% of the junk that the major studios were pumping out at the time. Both the first and second albums, along with some pretty decent outtakes, a fascinating DVD featuring footage from the recording sessions, and a lengthy booklet featuring studio notes and the various reminiscences, are included in the 2 CD, 1 DVD Rhino package. (The booklet in Rhino's deluxe edition is hardbound and offers a bit more information and more pictures than the booklet included with the standard edition; if you're a Wilburys fanatic, the deluxe edition is probably worth the slight up charge over the standard edition.)

What sets the first album apart first and foremost is the marvelously pure tenor of rock legend Roy Orbison, who fortunately lived long enough to see his career revived and celebrated by his appearance on this album before succumbing to cardiovascular disease before recording sessions could start on the second album. What is not as often appreciated about the first album is how it also marked a return to form for Bob Dylan, who was emerging from his commercially unpopular Christian rock phase. Viewed strictly from the Dylan perspective, this was arguably his best effort since the legendary Blood on the Tracks, even though his unmistakable authorship was imprinted on only two of the tracks, Tweeter and the Monkey Man and Congratulations. On these tracks, Dylan's unique and edgy lyrical vernacular combined with his often underrated vocal ability to make for a remarkable musical experience. The second album is of almost the same overall high quality as the first, but somehow it just lacks the peaks provided by Dylan and Orbison on the first. Still,it was eminently worthy of the talents of the group.

From today's perspective, the Traveling Wilburys were a reminder that music, particularly rock music, which had moved through all sorts of dark phases in the 70s and mid-80s, was above all supposed to be about having fun, both for the audience and for the performers. The members of the Traveling Wilburys sure were having fun recording this album, which when I really think about it, is what makes listening to this album after too long an absence, such a pure, unadulterated joy.
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