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Ultimate Helen Shapiro: Emi Years [Import]

Helen ShapiroAudio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Price: $14.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 15, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Import
  • Label: EMI Import
  • ASIN: B004D5H2LS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #205,939 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

February 2011 marks the 50th anniversary since Helen Shapiro burst onto the 60s pop scene as a 14 year old pop princess. This new 90 track set contains all of her hits, some great album tracks as well as some very rare material including outtakes plus some foreign language songs. This is a must for all of Helen's fans, the booklet features many previously unseen photographs including some of Helen as

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb collection but could have been better. April 10, 2011
By Eunice
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Helen Shapiro was a victim of her own phenomenal success as her iconic image became too closely identified with a brief window in pop music taste, and her audience grew up. Popular music underwent a drastic change in 1962/63 and she suddenly became "so last year", like leg warmers, heavy eye liner, beehive hairdos and wigs. She was also a victim of very bad arrangements as her managers consistently chose peppy upbeat teenage numbers, and sad teenage angst songs so that she was just recording the same old same old.

To make it worse, whatever song she recorded was given the same treatment - a noisy backing group and dance hall band thumping out the beat on tin drums. Too much woh, woh, woh, oh yea, yea, drum roll and bang, bang, bang! Music was changing but like IBM rejecting the PC, EMI was not going to change its format which had been around since WW2. La Mer (Beyond the Sea) which should have been sung as a slow retrospective poem with minimal background accompaniment evoking the sea washing up on the shore and allowing us to hear her remarkable voice, was hammered out with a fast bang, bang, bang accompaniment as if she was in a competition with Bobby Darin to finish up and catch the last bus home.

My taste does not run to belters. I cringe at Celine Dion and her clones holding a note at the top of their lungs. Although I am not a Sinatra fan, I must give him credit for knowing how to present a torch song. Helen's arrangers should have listened to Sinatra. Too many of the songs on this 60's collection were bellowed out in an attempt to get above the band. BUT, thankfully, not all - fortunately, she possessed a magnificent voice and some of the arrangements, Something Wonderful, Will You Still Love me Tomorrow, My Calendar are more to my taste.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good voice, but some terrible material. May 25, 2011
Format:Audio CD
I would have thought it was a `no brainer' that when a young girl with a voice like this chooses to sing a blues song as her first ever demo recording - that is the style suited to her voice. Instead she was then given mediocre and poorly written pop songs which often were badly produced. The corniness of some of the words and use of the girl choruses is beyond belief.

Having said that, there are some gems in here - over 30 excellent or very good songs, and for the price thats good value. It's a pity Helen didn't have a better producer who gave her far better material to suit her strong voice. The Beatles did write "Misery" especially for her, but her producer didn't even mention this to her. I think she would have made a real song of it. The Rarities CD was a pleasant surprise and contains songs which begin to show what she was capable of.

However, the three CDs are crisp and clear with a wide range of material supplied. The remastering has resulted in excellent sound quality and clarity of voice. I liked the notes in the booklet supplied, but would have appreciated the dates of the original recordings to have been shown in the cover notes. For the quality of her voice and the overall sound of these CDs I give it 4 stars. Its just sad that she wasn't given better material to work with.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars UK'S GREATEST SINGER---EVER!!! May 15, 2011
Format:Audio CD
It seems EMI finally went into Youtube and found out what HELEN SHAPIRO fans the world over were asking for! The impossible-to-find HELEN IN NASHVILLE from 1963 is included on this massive package! Sadly, Helen's jazz efforts are not here as EMI does not own those recordings. One listen to this incredible singer will be all you need to know why THE BEATLES were Helen's opening act! I've collected anything and everything HELEN SHAPIRO for the past three years. This is not a mere EMI's 99.99% complete. A MUST have for any collector...HELEN can sing it all...see if you aren't "gob-smacked," by the talent of this performer...and if you will agree with me: "AMERICA WAS ROBBEDDDDDD!"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Commemorating the 50th anniversary of Helen Shapiro's first hit single, this is an excellent collection featuring 89 tracks that she recorded as a teenager.

This set is divided into categories, which are sometimes arbitrary. The first CD is titled Singles and features the A sides of Helen's own hits, but is not limited to them as they only occupy the first dozen tracks. Her first four UK hits were also her biggest, with two of them (You don't know, Walking back to happiness) going all the way to number one and the other two (Don't treat me like a child, Tell me what he said) making the top three. After that, she had just one more top ten hit (Little Miss Lonely) and six minor hits, ending with a cover of Fever (Peggy Lee). The rest of the first CD no doubt includes failed singles.

The second CD is titled Hits of the 60's and features covers of other people's songs. It was common in those days for people to record cover versions, and I, for one, am just as happy to listen to covers of proven songs as to original songs. It is clear from other reviews that a lot of people don't like cover versions, but I knew that years ago. Helen recorded so many covers that you'll find more elsewhere in this set, as you'll see from the track listings of CD 1 and CD 3.

The third CD is titled Rarities, but I'm not sure if they all fit that category. Helen was the first singer to record It's my party (a few months before Lesley Gore) but it has been released on CD before on more than one occasion. It is included here because it was part of an album (Helen in Nashville) that appears in its entirety here in this set. The two tracks released as a single (Not responsible, Woes is me) are on CD 1, while the rest of the tracks from that album form the first ten tracks on CD 3.
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