Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Varèse Sarabande Releasing Quality Compilations From Classic Veteran Artists

by VVN Music

In the beginning, back in 1972, Varèse Sarabande was known as Varèse International and was known for releasing avant-garde classical music.

In 1977, Varèse Sarabande was created when Sarabande Records merged with the original company. The company continued to produce classical albums from the catalogs of Decca, Remington and JVC until, the next year, the released their first soundtrack album, The First Nudie Musical.

Set on a new track, the label became the home for many soundtracks over the next few decades with executive producer Robert Townson overseeing over 1,100 releases.

Then, a decade or so back, the label started resurrecting some of the best music of the past sixty years via their Varèse Vintage subsidiary.  Unlike many reissue labels, Varèse takes care to produce albums of superb sound quality and with most including historical commentary and complete original issue information including chart positions.

Over 250 releases later, they have one of the deeper catalogs of classic artists who are passed over by the major labels, including both compilations and complete albums from the vaults.

Our top three recent releases by Varèse Sarabande:

  1. The BBC Radio Sessions - The Zombies - While there are many BBC Radio Sessions albums out from various artists, it was the Zombies who released the very first. Recently, Varèse Sarabande expanded this release to a two disc set that includes all of the band's sessions from their start up until the release of Odyssey & Oracle. Included a short interviews with Rod Argent, Colin Blunstone and other band members and multiple versions of some of their biggest songs along with deep cuts and covers.

  2. 25 All-Time Greatest Hits - Charlie Rich - Many remember him as an early Sun artist or the prickly guy who lit the card with John Denver's name on fire in protest at the CMA Awards, but Charlie Rich had some of the best smooth, sophisticated country hits in history.  This album has them all including Behind Closed Doors, The Most Beautiful Girl in the World and Rolling With the Flow complete with original release information, chart positions and commentary.

  3. The Very Best of Paul Davis - Paul Davis - Davis was taken from us too soon at the age of 60 but, from 1970 to 1982, he had a number of classic examples of AM radio hits that are now relegated to the lower levels of many oldies station's playlists. It's a shame because these are really great songs and they are all collected on this album including Ride 'Em Cowboy, I Go Crazy, Sweet Life, Do Right, Cool Night, '65 Love Affair and a great cover of Love or Let Me Be Lonely. Once again, the album comes with complete track details. 
While we can't list the complete catalog, here are some of the best titles that are available from Varèse Sarabande:
  • The Very Best of the Searchers - Searchers
  • Good Times (Soundtrack) - Sonny & Cher
  • Rockin' My Life Away - Jerry Lee Lewis
  • All-Time Greatest Hits - Mitch Rider and the Detroit Wheels
  • The Very Best of the Happenings - Happenings
  • Silk Purse - Linda Ronstadt
  • The BBC Radio Sessions - Zombies
  • The Best of the Impressions: The Curtom Years - Impressions
  • The Very Best of Paul Davis - Paul Davis
  • The Hit Singles - Cilla Black
  • The Very Best of Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas - Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas
  • 25 All-Time Greatest Hits - Charlie Rich
  • The Complete Hit Singles - Buckinghams
  • Lotta Love: The Very Best of Nicolette Larson - Nicolette Larson
  • Mark-Almond - Mark-Almond
  • Malo - Malo
  • A New Place to Begin - Ray Price
  • All American Alien Boy - Ian Hunter
  • Songs Our Daddy Taught Us - Everly Brothers
  • Wall of Voodoo: Lost Weekend - The Best of the IRS Years - Wall of Voodoo
  • Sweet Live: Are You Ready? - Sweet
  • The Very Best of Wanda Jackson - Wanda Jackson
  • The Essential Sun Records Country Hits - Jerry Lee Lewis
  • 12 Number One Hits - Conway Twitty
  • Their Very Best - Amazing Rhythm Aces
  • Complete Singles 1964-1966 - Sir Douglas Quintet