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Very Best of [Import]

Neil DiamondAudio CD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (372 customer reviews)

Price: $25.01 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 23 Songs, 2011 --  
Audio CD, 2011 $9.00  
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For Neil Diamond, it’s always started with a song. Over the course of his astonishing career, Neil has sold more than 128 million albums worldwide. He’s charted 56 songs on the Billboard Hot 100, including 12 top 10 hits, and has released 16 Top 10 albums. He’s a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and in 2011, he was honored by the ... Read more in Amazon's Neil Diamond Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 1, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sony UK
  • ASIN: B009D8CRJM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (372 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #585,736 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
108 of 112 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Between the years 1966 and 1983 Neil Diamond was one of the most consistent hitmakers in American popular music. During this period he placed an impressive total of more than 50 singles on the Billboard Top 100 charts. All the while Neil was selling tons of albums and filling concert halls and arenas all across America. But I have always thought of Neil Diamond as primarily a singles artist. For years I have been waiting for a comprehensive anthology of all of Neil Diamond's biggest hits. The problem was that Neil Diamond recorded for four different labels over the years and contractual obligations prevented this from happening...until now. At long last Sony Legacy has mustered all of Neil Diamond's biggest hits onto one 23 track single disc collection called "The Very Best of Neil Diamond: The Original Studio Recordings". As the title indicates these are the original hit recordings you would remember from the radio. This impressive anthology reminds us that that Neil Diamond was not only a terrific recording and performing artist but was also an extremely gifted songwriter as well. As best I can tell Neil Diamond wrote each and every one of the songs included in this collection.

25 year old Neil Diamond burst onto the scene in 1966 with a tune called "Solitary Man". Although it was not a major hit the first time around (it was reissued in 1970) Neil Diamond grabbed the attention of the record-buying public and went on to have a series of hit singles on the Bang label that included "Cherry, Cherry", "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon", "Shilo" and "Kentucky Woman". These are fine examples of Neil Diamond's earliest work which was pretty much just Neil and his guitar. All are included in "The Very Best of Neil Diamond".
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100 of 113 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars DEAR MUSIC APPRECIATORS November 30, 2011
Format:Audio Cassette
Dear Music Appreciators,


After some serious soul searching and hand wringing over my feelings for Neil and his discography (HOT AUGUST NIGHT was the first cassette I ever bought with my own money and I played it endlessly throughout elementary school) I've decided to offer a two faced/split personality review of this, his latest musical offering to the world - hopefully Neil will understand - I'm conflicted because I care...

Smiley Face Review = Five Stars

If you're looking a for a single-disc, budget priced, career-spanning compilation that contains a little something from each of the labels Neil Diamond has recorded under, with no pesky live versions, then this is the album to buy.

Frowny Face Review = Three Stars

Is this really "The Very Best of Neil Diamond?" The title itself offers some evidence to the contrary, considering there have been other albums previously issued with this same title, which is an excellent way to mislead fans and confuse search engines. Yes, there's the addition of the subtitle "The Original Studio Recordings" but those words seem to be an afterthought, and were we getting something besides the original studio versions on all those other compilations anyway? Maybe so, but I believe the average Neil Diamond fan does not want to have to think too much about which version they're getting - either it's live or it's the one from the album - anything more would be the territory of the Dylanphiles.
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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
As anyone familiar with Neil Diamond's career knows, he's had more hits than could possibly fit onto a single CD. But drawing across his stints on Bang, Uni, Capitol (for which he recorded the soundtrack to The Jazz Singer) and Columbia, this twenty-three track set shows Diamond's maturation from Brill Building songwriter to hit-making singer to worldwide superstar to reinvented elder statesman. Of course, given the set's non-chronological programming, you'll only hear the actual arc of his artistic development if you reprogram the tracks as 12, 4, 9, 10, 16, 21, 20, 18, 6, 11, 21, 7, 5, 13, 8, 17, 2, 14, 1, 3, 15, 22, 23, 19. If you play the set as-is, you'll start near the end of Diamond's hit-making career with 1978's "Forever in Blue Jeans" and spin through a few other 1970s releases before jumping back to 1966's "Cherry, Cherry."

Given the focus on hits, it's easy to excuse the great album tracks left behind, but the inclusion of lesser sides in place of the hits "Thank the Lord for the Night Time," "Longfellow Serenade" and "Heartlight" is surprising. The mix of Top 10s, Adult Contemporary hits ("Beautiful Noise"), low-charting singles that were hits for other artists ("I'm a Believer" and "Red Red Wine") and latter-day sides with Rick Rubin ("Pretty Amazing Grace" and "Hell Yeah") covers the breadth and depth of his career, but the muddled timeline and interweaving of mono Bang-era tracks with modern stereo productions is without obvious purpose. Segueing from the 1980's "Love on the Rocks" to hard-rocking guitars of "Cherry, Cherry" is awkward, as is the mood shift from 1972's "Play Me" to 1967's bubblegum-soul "I'm a Believer.
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