Various artists - Love in the 50's (2004, CD)
Various artists - 20th Century Masters: The Best of Bluegrass (The Millennium Collection) (2002, CD)
Donna Fargo - Good Old Country (2000, CD)
Don Gibson - Good Old Country (2000, CD)
Patty Loveless - When Fallen Angels Fly (1994, CD)
Various artists - Real Hot Jazz (1982, mp3)
Jimmy Smith - Straight Life (1961, CD)
Various artists - Anti Sampler, Fall (2009, mp3 download)
Various artists - Brushfire Records Fall Sampler (2009, mp3 download)
Various artists - Anti Fall Sampler (2009, mp3 download)
Love in the 50's is something my wife bought, as are many of these. A collection of pop songs from the 50s that included both more established as well as up-and-coming artists, and I deleted more than half the collection. The big score on this one is Sarah Vaughan singing "Misty," which is one of my favorite songs, regardless of artist or genre.
The Best of Bluegrass is another from the Millennium Collection series and was purchased from yourmusic.com. Not a spotless collection, but pretty good. My only minor gripes are with Ricky Skaggs on the first track (which is okay) and Vince Gill on the last track (which doesn't even sound like bluegrass to me). In between are more traditional bluegrass artists: Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, The Osborne Brothers, The Stanley Brothers and a couple of others. Has "Rocky Top" by The Osborne Brothers so that's a big plus. I always liked that song a lot when I was a kid, except when I was a kid I thought it was a woman singing it. The dude had a high voice.
The two Good Old Country albums are apparently part of a series of more "classic" country singers. I think the "greatest hits" tape I had of Donna Fargo when I was a kid was better than this CD. This one had one spoken-word piece which I deleted. Don Gibson was one of the true greats of country music who seems to me to be too-often overlooked. This disc has a lot of good songs on it, most notably "Sea of Heartbreak" which has been covered a multitude of times by other, often lesser artists. P.S. The first time I ever heard "Johnny B. Goode," it was sung by Donna Fargo (but it's not on this disc).
Patty Loveless was another of my wife's purchases. I'm not sure I'm going to keep it. It doesn't really do anything for me.
Real Hot Jazz is another of those very early digitally-recorded CDs from the very early years of the compact disc. It is out of print and I received an mp3 CD of it in trade for an mp3 CD of my out-of-print First Class Jazz. It's a great collection. Artists include Don Menza's 80s Big Band, Jack Sheldon's Late Show All-Stars, John Dentz Reunion Band and Freddie Hubbard.
Then we have yet another album by the great jazz organist Jimmy Smith. One more for the collection.
The last three are all free mp3 downloads from Amazon.com.
CMJ09 turned out to be pretty good. I give it 7 out of 16 for notable artists and an overall score of 2.4, which is pretty good for these samplers. It's a mix of various kinds of indie/alt rock with one reggae track thrown in. Notable artists/group are: The Antlers, The Depreciation Guild, La Strada, The Generationals, Still Flyin', The Two Man Gentleman Band and The Budos Band. This collection has The Antlers' "Two," which I recently posted the video of.
The Brushfire sampler isn't quite as good. I gave it a 2.2 overall with only one notable artist: Zee Avi. She has a great voice. One track, "Peace, Love and Happiness" by G. Love and Special Sauce, I would have given a 2 but had to minus 1 for stupid lyrics.
The Anti sampler is another pretty good one, 7 out of 16 for notable artists and an overall score of 2.5. A wide sampling of various musical styles from the Anti label. Notable artists/groups: The Swell Season, Alec Ounsworth, Dead Man's Bones, Joe Henry, Booker T., Frank Turner, Jason Lytle. The Booker T. piece, "Hey Ya," is an instrumental that is funky, jazzy rock all rolled into one. Nice.
Total album count: 670.