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Stuck in the Middle with You

3.9 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Stuck in the Middle with You by Stealers Wheel

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 10, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: K-tel
  • Run Time: 30 minutes
  • ASIN: B003R0MJEU
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,657,950 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Tim Brough VINE VOICE on December 1, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It may have taken a decade for Gerry Rafferty to come to terms with his past (his classic "Baker Street" was about meeting Joe Egan several years post-Wheel breakdown), but "The Best Of Stealers Wheel" will rekindle the flame for anyone who puzzled over originally hearing "Stuck In The Middle With You." Thanks to some more obsessive fans (Quentin Tarrentino has used both "Stuck" and "Star" in his movies), Stealers Wheel has held on to their cult audience. This "Best Of" is the definitive collection, being the first to include "Stuck In The Middle With You," "Star" and "Everyone's Agreed That Everything Will Turn Out Fine," Stealers Wheel's three charting American Singles.

The US got tricked by the Wheel back in 1973. A single with a lyric that sounded torn from Bob Dylan's back pages and harmonies that mirrored CSN&Y climbed into the Top Ten. "Stuck In The Middle With You" was an immediate classic, and the brains behind Stealers Wheel suddenly found themselves turned into overnight success stories. Gerry Rafferty and Joe Egan had been kicking about England for several years (Rafferty had cut a solo album and recorded with folk rockers the Humblebums before forming Stealers Wheel), and the group had already been signed, broken up and reformed before the first album came out.

That debut, a delicious mix of English folk harmony and Beatlesque pop, contained several great songs. These included "You Put Something Better Inside Of Me" and "I Get By." Produced by the legendary Lieber/Stoller team (writers and producers for the likes of Elvis Presley, Ben E King and The Coasters), the album had a clean and uncanny sense of craft. Unfortunately, Rafferty and Egan were a volatile pair.
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Format: MP3 Music
Folks, these are not the original recordings- they are remakes. I was burned because the :30 preview for "Star" is so close to the sound of the original that it fooled me. If you want the original singles, go with one of the UMG compilation offerings. YOU WILL BE DISAPPOINTED with the tracks on this album.
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Format: Audio CD
Amazon in its infinite wisdom (like they do for most stuff) has combined reviews for a couple of different collections of Stealers Wheels releases. Avoid the 8 track K-Tel version as it has some re-recordings that DON'T feature Gerry Rafferty. If you want to get a solid collection of Stealers Wheel's three albums the Spectrum release "Stuck in the Middle with You: The Hits Collection" with 18 tracks is the way to go as it generously samples all three Stealers Wheel albums (if you can get collect the original albums on good sounding vinyl or CDs that would be the way to go though).

This was recently reissued due to Gerry Rafferty's death at the beginning of 2011.

Opening with the band's biggest hit "Stuck in the Middle with You" (written about dealing with executives of the music business although it was vague enough to be interpreted a variety of ways) and followed by their other hit written by the other member of Stealers Wheel Joe Egan "Star" (a should have been hit separates them "Everything'll Turn Out Fine")the only flaw of the album is the sequencing--while it works for the most part a chronological sequencing would have worked better (and you can resequence it yourself if you feel that way).

It would have been nice if the set had extensive sleeve notes on the band but we do get a complete credits for each song which is a step up compared to other compilations. The sound quality on this compilation is pretty good.

Stealers Wheel was a woefully unappreciated band and it's a pity the pressurs of generating another hit single caused the band to implode because Rafferty and Egan had huge potential together. If you're interested in picking up the band's full discography they are/were available on the Lemon label.

Recommended.
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Format: Audio CD
Compiled from their three albums of the early 70's, this actually turned out to be quite a fine piece of pop music. I purchased this CD based on my appreciation for "Stuck in the Middle with You" but soon found that it turned out to be one of the weaker numbers on the compilation. Complete with slide guitar, harmonica, violins, jangly piano, this is certainly a band that has the rock-country-folk sound down to a science. Virtually every song is a winner. Some of the standouts, in my opinion, include "This Morning", "Star", "Steamboat Row" and "Go As You Please". It's mellow, but also includes a couple tunes that can get you up and dancing. Gerry Rafferty has never really broken through as a big talent and it's a bit curious as to why he hasn't. Certain alt-country bands of the 90's sound quite a bit derivative. It's easy now to see where some of their influences have come from. If you're a fan of Son Volt, Uncle Tupelo, or Slobberbone, you might want to give this disc a spin.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
"Stealers Wheel: The Hits Collection" is a generously filled CD of the best of Stealers Wheel. Calling it a "hits" collection seems a bit odd as most people are only familiar with 1972's "Stuck in the Middle With You": indeed, their only hit that made it to the top 10. But don't let that scare you off as this CD stands as proof that this group recorded some of the most accessible, guitar driven pop of the early '70s. Often referred to as the UK's answer to Crosby Stills and Nash because of their tight harmonies I've always thought the group sounded more like the Beatles or Badfinger.

During its short life Stealers Wheel released 3 LPs between 1973 and 1975 and due to constant in-fighting and uncertainty about the bands future, only the first LP, 1973's Stealers Wheel, was properly marketed and managed. It made it to the top 50 in the US and Polygram's Spectrum Music has included 7 of the 10 tracks from the debut here including "Stuck..." and other essentials like "Late Again" and "You Put Something Better Inside Me".

1974 found the group reduced to Gerry Rafferty and Joe Egan (after Egan persuaded Rafferty to return to the fold) and the release of the excellent Ferguslie Park. The album didn't even crack the top 100 but the material represents the group at its artistic peak and contains standout tracks such as "Star", "Blind Faith", "Good Businessman", and "Everything Will Turn Out Fine", all featuring the groups signature harmonies and hooks. (6 of the 12 tracks from "Ferguslie Park" are included here.
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