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The Essential Johnny Mathis

4.7 out of 5 stars 116 customer reviews

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The Essential Johnny Mathis
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Audio CD, May 24, 2004
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Frequently Bought Together

  • The Essential Johnny Mathis
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Editorial Reviews

40 legendary performances from probably the top male vocalist of the last 40 years or so. Includes Wonderful! Wonderful!; It's Not for Me to Say; Chances Are; The Twelfth of Never; No Love (but Your Love); Wild Is the Wind; Teacher, Teacher; A Certain Smile; Misty; Maria; Gina; What Will My Mary Say; Too Much, Too Little, Too Late (with Deniece Williams); I'm Coming Home; On a Clear Day You Can See Forever , and more.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 24, 2004)
  • Original Release Date: May 24, 2004
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Sony Legacy
  • Run Time: 139 minutes
  • ASIN: B000219986
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (116 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,188 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Edgar Olivares on August 1, 2004
Format: Audio CD
My relatives were Johnny Mathis fans when I was growing up. I liked his music then so I was curious to hear this double-album. Not surprisingly, I'm glad I got it.

The forty tracks on this compilation cover 1956 through 2000. To the new listener, it's an excellent introduction to a legendary artist. To the long time fan, it's a very impressive collection with tracks not found on previous Jon Mat compilations. The first eight tracks are mono. Most of his early hits like "Chances Are", "The Twelfth of Never" and "It's Not For Me To Say" were performed with Ray Conniff. Other hits include "Wonderful! Wonderful!", "A Certain Smile", "Gina" and his popular duet with Deniece Williams "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late". There's one Christmas song: "Sleigh Ride". "99 Miles From L.A." was originally from the 1975 album "Feelings" but here it's a live version. "A Time For Us" is actually the Love Theme From Romeo and Juliet.

He also sings songs from Broadway shows such as "Gypsy", "Cats", "West Side Story" and "Evergreen" to name a few. He also has a few movie tunes here as well. There are also several cover songs including most recently "Unbreak My Heart" and "Because You Loved Me". A few album cuts and some minor hits make up the rest of the album. The booklet has no essay; instead there's a track listing with recording dates, chart positions and some photos.

If you're just getting familiar with Jon Mat, you found a great place to begin your collection. If you have other collections already give this some consideration since it covers slightly more material. If you want just one Johnny Mathis compilation, this is it.
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Format: Audio CD
You won't find "Tonight" (from Westside Story) in this collection. And you also won't get liner notes. Seems like a rush job to cash in on this remarkable singer and snag wallets from the pockets of nostalgic baby-boomers without doing a thing to earn the right.

The best thing I can say about this collection is that most casual fans will like the first disc, and they'll get turned on to new things they'll like on the second disc. I know of no other single CD disc you can buy that has as extensive a collection of recognizable "greatest hits" than what you'll get all on the first CD of this 2-CD set.

But if you're a real fan... get "The Music of Johnny Mathis -- A Personal Collection" 4-CD box set. It's really not a lot more money. (In fact, for a box set, it's a steal.) And you get informative liner notes. I know that's a lot of music, but like walking through someone's prolific garden, you get to pick and choose. And you probably won't miss what you were looking for. (Unless if you were looking for his great recording of "All the Time"...) Ah, well... I tried to help.
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Format: Audio CD
The Essential Johnny Mathis is a splendid two CD set that is an absolute must have for fans of the great Johnny Mathis. The sound quality is excellent and I like the artwork.

"Fly Me To The Moon (In Other Words)" starts the first CD with Johnny crooning just as well as any crooner ever could! The arrangement highlights Johnny's vocals and this suits me just fine. Johnny handles this tune with sophistication. "When Sunny Gets Blue" features Johnny with a lush musical arrangement; his voice is as smooth as silk. "It's Not For Me To Say" is a Johnny Mathis classic; he aces this number and it's gorgeous to hear! "Wonderful! Wonderful!" stuns me with its beauty; and listen also for "Chances Are." "Chances Are" is a rather romantic number that features Johnny front and center; it's beautiful when he delivers this so flawlessly.

"A Certain Smile" again features Johnny's excellent vocal talents and the arrangement makes good use of the strings; and there's also "Misty." "Misty" is easily worth the price of this CD set alone; I love every minute of it! "What Will My Mary Say" is another huge hit for Johnny Mathis; he bats this one straight out of the ballpark! Awesome!

The first CD ends with Johnny singing "The Look Of Love." Johnny never sings a superfluous note and this really impresses me.

The second CD continues the hits. "I'm Coming Hone" is a fantastic tune and Johnny sings this with panache, heart and soul. "What I Did For Love," a song from A Chorus Song, showcases Johnny's vocal talents as he sings this with great sensitivity. "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late" is a beautiful duet between Johnny and Deniece Williams; their voices complement each other perfectly and I love it!
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Format: Audio CD
I have been listening to Johnnie Mathis for over 40 years. And, while I did "stray" from his music in my 30's, I have found that as the years go by, I am making my way back to him. This is an album that does exactly that: takes me back to his music that I know and love. Regardless of your mood, there is a song on this album for you. When I listen, certain songs bring back very, very fond memories, while others are used to create new ones in my life today. It's an album worth having.
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