Gord's Gold: As Good As It Gets - 5 Stars
This outstanding album is a compilation of Gordon Lightfoot's very best songs up to the time of its original release as an LP (1975). The CD contains 11 songs originally recorded at United Artists (two as medleys) and 12 songs from his first five albums at Warner Brothers/Reprise. Three of his four biggest commercial hits are on this album (If You Could Read My Mind, Sundown, and Carefree Highway) making this an excellent first Gordon Lightfoot album to buy. (The fourth big hit, Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald, was written and recorded later in 1975. You can find it on Summertime Dream, Complete Greatest Hits, Songbook (boxed set) or, in a rerecorded version, on Gord's Gold Volume II).
The rerecorded songs from his UA period ('66 - '69) are all truly exceptional songs. A true Lightfoot fan would want to have both the original UA recording (in a much simpler style) and this one, but there is no arguing with the fact that the Gord's Gold versions of these songs are exquisite. In particular, the recording of Canadian Railroad Trilogy, perhaps his finest song, sends chills down my spine and the recordings of Early Mornin' Rain and the medleys For Lovin' Me / Did She Mention My Name and I'm Not Sayin' / Ribbon Of Darkness demonstrate his songwriting and singing at their very finest.
In addition to the three top-10 hits from his Warner Brothers years, Lightfoot has included several other masterpieces of that era. My favorites of these are Minstrel Of The Dawn, Beautiful and Don Quixote.
This album is a 'must have'.
Originally written June 29, 1998
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