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Profile for William R. Weiss > Reviews


William R. Weiss' Profile

Customer Reviews: 30
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Helpful Votes: 2163

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William R. Weiss "Bill" RSS Feed (Maine USA)

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Top Gear 22
Top Gear 22
DVD ~ Jeremy Clarkson

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably won't see it now..., August 2, 2015
This review is from: Top Gear 22 (DVD)
I'd love to see this released, but I doubt it ever will be now. It was scheduled for release on June 5th, but we all know what happened with Clarkson and the BBC show. Clarkson, Hammond and May had already sold out a Top Gear Live tour which had to be renamed "Clarkson, Hammond & May Live" due to contractual stuff, like them not being affiliated with Top Gear any more. The BBC is in no hurry to release this now (and may indeed need permission from the 3 to do it) when C, H & M have just announced a new show, and Top Gear will be returning with new hosts. The Beeb doesn't want to give them any more money if they can help it. And why would C, H & M want to help promote their old show anyway, when they've got a new one coming out? It might confuse some viewers. And I wouldn't doubt that they even pull the DVD's and BD's that are in print with C, H & M. (Series 10-21 on DVD, 14-17 on BD) Series 9 has been released in DVD in Germany, by the way.

Singing Fisherman
Singing Fisherman
Offered by Fulfillment Express US
Price: $227.20
24 used & new from $135.16

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW, July 7, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Singing Fisherman (Audio CD)
Wow. All I can say is wow. This is truly a box set to end all box sets, and it is the beginning and end for all Johnny Horton fans. From the moment I opened up the box from Amazon and saw the sheer size of this thing, I was amazed. This is an LP sized (12x12) box, but it's about as thick as 15-20 LPs put together. The music is on 9 CDs stored in 5 jewel cases. The set contains two beautiful hardcover books, each 288 pages in length. You'll never find so many photographs of Johnny Horton together in one place. And many of them are full color. The other book was written in hand by Johnny's mother, shortly after he died, in a diary type notebook. This book reproduces those pages, in color. It's touching to read her memories and thoughts. And the MUSIC in this set, WOW. EVERY song he ever recorded. Other sets focus on Johnny's music from 1956-1960, but this one starts at the beginning, in 1950. The sound quality is wonderful. There is only one other JH CD on the planet that bests the sound quality of this set, and that's the "Johnny Horton Makes History" CD that was mastered by Steve Hoffman, directly from the original 3-track (yes, 3-track) masters. But that CD only contains 12 songs, this set has like 300. Bear Family says in the notes they used first generation stereo (and mono) masters where available. Of course many of the really early songs on here were taken from vinyl records. But they sound good (for the time period) and that stuff is so rare you won't hear it anywhere else. There are demos galore, as well as early (and other) takes on some songs. This is a must-have for any Johnny Horton fan. You can't call yourself one if you don't own this box set. Well done, Bear Family and thanks to longtime Horton family friend Jerry Hope for helping with the loan of rare recordings and other items, as well as some of the information contained in the book. You have truly given us a complete look at one of the most underrated country/rockabilly singers of all time.

Ripper Street: Season Three [Blu-ray]
Ripper Street: Season Three [Blu-ray]
DVD ~ Various
Price: $22.39
25 used & new from $19.90

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great series and still a good Blu-ray, June 25, 2015
Still a decent Blu-ray set. Lots of talk about editing (and the BBC has indeed been guilty of this before on their DVD/BD releases, it's usually due to musical/song royalties/clearances though). I'm not sure if these are really edited from what's available to watch online, the times look similar to the times, but the times might be longer. Here's what I found by checking the BD episode times in my Oppo BD player:

Episode 1 - 1:01:45
Episode 2 - 1:01:43
Episode 3 - 1:00:52
Episode 4 - 1:01:38
Episode 5 - 1:01:43
Episode 6 - 1:02:06
Episode 7 - 1:01:46
Episode 8 - 1:01:52

There are absolutely NO extras on these two BD discs. No commentary, no nothing. It doesn't bother me, but some people like them. It's also interesting to note that this 3rd series BD is presented in only 2.0 stereo, not 5.1 as the last series was. So there is no surround, your surround/back speakers will sit this one out. says it was probably due to budget cuts. But it still sounds good and has subwoofer support. These discs DO have English subtitles.

I was happy to get them on BD because I like the series but I don't have cable and I didn't want to pay 2 or 3 bucks each to watch them online.

A Hard Day's Night (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray + DVD)
A Hard Day's Night (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray + DVD)
DVD ~ John Lennon
Offered by newbury_comics
Price: $24.49
42 used & new from $17.99

26 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wait for it, May 8, 2014
How can ANYONE write a "customer review" of a product before it's released? Shame on Amazon for allowing this before CDs/DVDs/Blu-rays are released. Don't tell me what you THINK it will look or sound like. Wait until you've bought, seen or used the product before you pass judgement on it. I've given this 5 stars to try to offset the brain donors that gave it bad reviews before it's even been released. Even good reviews before it's released skew the score.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 5, 2014 6:31 PM PDT

The Complete Dunhill/ABC Hit Singles
The Complete Dunhill/ABC Hit Singles
Price: $15.99
33 used & new from $10.53

17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Original mono singles mixes, but not the most pristine sound, March 28, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'm a long time Grass Roots fan, 56 years old. I have all of their original vinyl albums, and the following CD "best of" compilations:

The Grass Roots Greatest Hits Vol 1 (MCA 1987)
The Grass Roots Greatest Hits Vol 2 (MCA 1987)
The Grass Roots Anthology (Rhino 1991)
The Grass Roots All-Time Greatest Hits (MCA Import 1996)
The Complete Dunhill/ABC Hit Singles (Real Gone 2014)

I can appreciate the work that went into this new Real Gone CD, especially knowing the fate of most of the original mono masters. And for the life of me, I can't really tell which songs on this new CD were taken from vinyl (needle drops) and which ones were taken from master tapes, and the booklet doesn't say. But after comparing all of these CDs on my home stereo system, and ripping all of these CDs onto my hard drive using EAC (Exact Audio Copy) and then comparing the wav files in Gold Wave, I can honestly say that SOUND QUALITY wise, the 1987 CDs are probably the best, sonically. YES I KNOW THEY'RE STEREO and not the mono single versions we got to know on AM radio. But from a pure SOUND QUALITY point of view...being "clean", "clear" and un-messed with as far as compression and eq, those 1987 CDs are the best overall. The 1991 Rhino set wasn't bad, but it was eq'd a bit and compressed slightly. The MCA Import "All-Time Greatest Hits" was driven a bit harder, compression-wise, and the top end was eq'd to the point of harshness.

This new Real Gone CD sounds a bit muddy by comparison to any of these other CDs. And compressed. And dare I say even a bit flat and full of midrange. Yes you might say it's "warmer" but it's not as clean. Many vocals and instruments are buried by comparison to the 1987 MCA CDs. And it's not just because those 1987 CDs are in stereo either. Those stereo master tapes really outshine the masters made and used on this new CD, clarity wise. In 1987 CDs hadn't yet entered the "loudness wars" phase, and most decent CDs were almost exact digital copies of the analog master tapes. Loads of glorious dynamic range. No-fatigue listening. Not too "digital" sounding. Just right, to me anyway. (Many 1980's CDs are now highly sought after for their sonic quality) And those CDs have what many call "sound stage" where you can not only hear the instruments cleanly, but you can also hear the space between and around them. This new CD is sadly lacking in that department. It's all in your face.

And I have to say that SOME of these mono mixes are not THAT much different from their stereo counterparts, other than the fact they're in mono. Some are quite a bit different. And call me a heathen, but for my money, the Rob Grill overdub version of "Where Were You When I Needed You" is better than the original...I just like Grill's singing better. But that's just my opinion. The Grill version was also used on the 1971 "Their 16 Greatest Hits" LP. It was also used on the 1987 Greatest Hits Vol. 1 CD. True long-time fans know that there were actually 3 different Grass Roots versions of this song with three different lead singers, before the end of 1967...Bill Fulton, P.F. Sloan and Rob Grill. And that's not counting any of the re-recorded "new versions" from the 1980's/90's.

I'm glad I have this Real Gone CD in my collection, and finally have the singles versions of these songs. This CD is definitely worth owning, but sonically those short 10 song each 1987 greatest hits CDs sound the best. Yes I know that even put together they're missing a few songs.

I'm not going to get sucked into a mono vs stereo debate, as to which mixes are better, I'm just saying that for pure sonic quality, this Real Gone CD is more like what we heard on AM radio back in the day, and (probably) less like what was heard in the studio, off the multi-tracks when these songs were recorded.

This is my opinion, your mileage may vary.
Comment Comments (14) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 18, 2015 5:22 PM PDT

Silver Dagger
Silver Dagger
Price: $0.89

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love her voice, June 7, 2013
This review is from: Silver Dagger (MP3 Music)
I came to know of Ebony Buckle in her appearance on George Gently. She sang two songs on that episode ("Gently with Class") and they're now available for download on Amazon and iTunes. Both songs are traditional English folk songs, with new life breathed into them by Ebony and her band. Versions of "Silver Dagger" were done by Judy Collins, Joan Baez, Dolly Parton (probably the worst version ever!) and many others over the years. Listen to the preview and let this young lady's talented voice speak for itself. Then download and enjoy it. Great stuff.

Matty Groves
Matty Groves
Price: $0.89

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff!, June 7, 2013
This review is from: Matty Groves (MP3 Music)
I too came to know of Ebony Buckle from seeing her on George Gently. Watching her sing in that episode ("Gently with Class") it seemed to me that she was actually doing the singing - it was not dubbed in. I think I was right, and with a little Googling I found the two songs from that episode available on Amazon (also on iTunes) and I couldn't download them fast enough. "Matty Groves" is an old English folk song, also covered and made famous by Fairport Convention (and others) over the years. But Ebony Buckle's version sparkles and kicks it at the same time. Hands down it's my favorite version of this song.

Foyle's War: Set 7
Foyle's War: Set 7
DVD ~ Michael Kitchen
Price: $25.71
23 used & new from $20.74

145 of 149 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still A Great Show, May 22, 2013
This review is from: Foyle's War: Set 7 (DVD)
The UK DVD's have the proper series numbers. Series 7 just came out last week in the UK, and I got mine and watched it already

To correct some of the bad misinformation that's going on here, both the UK "series 7" and the US "set 7" are the same. I buy the UK versions (a region-free DVD player is needed) because they come out months sooner than the US versions. And many times, the US versions are edited. If the series was shown here on PBS, and there is a PBS logo on the front of the DVD (ie, Downton Abbey DVD's) they are edited usually. FYI, the episode titles for series 7 AND set 7 are: The Eternity Ring, The Cage, and Sunflower. Only 3 episodes. And longtime fans of the series will probably miss the Paul Milner character, played by Anthony Howell - he's not in this series. Honeysuckle Weeks returns as Sam, but no Milner.

It was nice to see Foyle again, but it's strange that he's taking orders from others, as he's working for the government instead of the police. The "old" Foyle that I know and love would have told them to bugger off instead of letting them recruit him so easily - literally after he just gets off the ship, returning from his trip to America. Buy Foyle does get to quietly correct and politely admonish his superiors, something he's very good at. He has a quiet strength about him. If you've seen Michael Kitchen in other roles, this role is not really a stretch for him, he really does speak and act that way.

This series deals more with the post war "cold war" that was also going on in England. It's a tad darker than the first 6 series I think. Even Sam has lost some of her youthful good nature, maybe that's down to struggling through the war and it's aftermath, I don't know, but she's not as cheerful this time out.

This series may not 100% up to par with the middle series of Foyle's War, but it's still a great show. The acting is great, and if you watch a lot of British TV shows, you'll know many of the actors by sight.

So again, in England, there are and have only been 7 SERIES of this show, no matter what US TV or Acorn US has done with the numbers. They are not "seasons" in the UK, they are series. Partly because they're very short series, and they can come and go at any time, not in the autumn like here in America (I lived in London for two years). Heck, there were 4 years between the 1st and 2nd series of Fawlty Towers.
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 21, 2014 5:38 AM PST

On My Mind / In My Heart
On My Mind / In My Heart
Price: $17.55
51 used & new from $2.95

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There's nothing like it, March 19, 2013
I've been a fan of Jesse Dee since I saw him in concert (as the opening act) with James Hunter a few years ago. This guy, with just his guitar, won over that room full of James Hunter fans after just a few songs. In some ways, their music is similar, but they differ as well. Jesse's songs are a bit more "soulful". If you listen to this CD with your eyes closed, I guarantee the image of what you hear won't match the image on the album cover. Jesse invokes the spirits of Sam Cooke, Ben E. King, Percy Sledge and others. He doesn't copy them - he's been influenced by them - writing his original songs and performing them in a soulful/bluesy way that no "white boy" from Boston has a right to. The dude nails it.

Some of these songs have been in his arsenal for a few years - I remember him doing "Sweet Tooth" live a few years ago and I love that song. Some of these songs are a bit bouncy, ("I Won't Forget About You", "On My Mind/In My Heart", "No Matter Where I Am" and "From The Start", a duet with Rachel Price) complete with really great horn sections, and some are a little edgier - "Fussin' And Fightin'". Some are more mellow - "Boundary Line" could have been sung by Percy Sledge. But it's obvious by the way that Jesse Dee wrings pure emotion out of every line, he means what he says.

To sum it up, Jesse Dee is not emulating these R&B singers of the past - though I'm sure he loves their music. These are new, original songs, done the way that only Jesse Dee can do them.

This IS Jesse Dee.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 20, 2013 4:15 PM PDT

Domke 725-310 FA-031 U.S. Post Office Shoulder Pad
Domke 725-310 FA-031 U.S. Post Office Shoulder Pad
Price: $18.17
9 used & new from $7.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars It came apart, March 19, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I used this shoulder pad for four (count 'em, 4) days and the rubber part separated from the black part. Actually, it had already begun to come apart in the package. I had one of these in the 90's and it lasted quite a while. I'm not sure what kind of glue they're using on these nowadays, but it's worthless. I should have sent it back right away, now I'm stuck with it. Maybe I'll see what type of glue/epoxy/adhesive is best for gluing quasi-foam rubber to quasi-leathery-plastic stuff and see if I can fix it.

Maybe you'll have better luck with yours than I did. Good luck.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 11, 2015 11:42 AM PDT

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