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The Essential Donovan

2 Ratings: 2.5
2004 audio CD release

Long after his earliest material -- recorded for Pye and Hickory -- was remastered and reissued in several intriguing permutations, Donovan s Epic years had still received only cursory treatment (even while, ironically, the original records of many lesser … see full wiki

Tags: Music, Albums, British Folk
1 review about The Essential Donovan

A big upgrade over the previous "Greatest Hits" package.

  • Dec 23, 2008
I purchased "The Essential Donovan" to replace my vinyl copy of "Donovan"s Greatest Hits" that was originally released in the U.S. back in 1969.  That collection had a couple of major flaws.  First, there were absolutely no liner notes offered.  More importantly,  two of Donovan's earliest hits namely "Catch The Wind" and "Colours" were re-recordings and not the original hits that appeared in the U.S. on Nashville's Hickory label.

While under no circumstances would I ever consider Donovan to be a five star performer, this recently released CD gives me just what I am looking for.  All 14 tracks are indeed the original recordings and the disc also includes three tunes not included on the original Epic "Greatest Hits" package.  They are "To Susan On The West Coast Waiting", the 1969 Top Ten hit "Atlantis" and finally a song I had not heard in years (somehow I survived the trauma) "Goo Goo Barabajagal" which Donovan recorded with the Jeff Beck Group. Donovan proved to be equally popular on both sides of the Atlantic, achieving approximately the same chart success is Britain as he did here in the States.  He had a considerable amount of success on the Billboard Hot 100 Album charts as well.  In the early 1970's Donovan walked away from it all.  According to the liner notes "Six years of fame was enough.  I had done everything.  It was extraordinary; you couldn't get any more famous and any more successful."   In the early 1990's, my wife and I saw Donovan perform in a local park about a mile from our home.  It was just him, his guitar and a microphone.  He clearly was enjoying himself and the crowd loved him.

One final note--the remastering job on "The Essential Donovan" is first rate.  Combine that with the aforementioned liner notes and a great price and you have pretty good bang for your buck.  Recommended!
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November 03, 2009
I love Donovan. I need to get some more of his stuff...maybe I'll check this out.
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