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Comprehensive collection of the band in all its incarnations.

  • Aug 5, 2010

When this collection was released some years ago  I was rather amused by another reviewer's description of "Jefferson Airplane/Jefferson Starship/Starship Hits" as being rather "bizarre".  I must  concur that this is an apt description as this is one group that changed personnel and musical directions so frequently that it would make your head spin.  But in the final analysis, this outfit left us with a pretty impressive body of work.  This two CD set released in 1998 is no doubt the best collection that has ever been offered.  RCA/BMG has included a generous 35 tracks beginning with the best work of Jefferson Airplane from the late 60's. Aside from the obligatory "Somebody To Love" and "White Rabbit" selections include "Ballad of You & Me & Pooneil" as well as the title cuts from two of their popular albums of the day "Crown of Creation" and "Volunteers".

For me there is no question that the group did it finest work in the mid to late 70's when they were known as Jefferson Starship.  All of the hit singles are here including "Miracles", "With Your Love""Count On Me" and one of my personal favorites "Runaway" from 1978.  Another terrific tune, 1984's "No Way Out" is also included here.

The group had another metamorphisis in 1985 when they re-emerged as simply Starship. And much to my amazement, the group scored with several of its biggest hits ever including "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now", "Sara" and of course "We Built This City".  All three of those tunes reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.

While I enjoyed the music, Jefferson Airplane/Jefferson Starship/Starship was never among my very favorite bands.  There are really more tracks here that I required.  But as a practical matter "Jefferson Airplane/Jefferson Starship/Starship Hits" remains the best collection available.  The remastering job is excellent and the 12 page booklet that is included is OK.  Recommended.

Comprehensive collection of the band in all its incarnations. Comprehensive collection of the band in all its incarnations. Comprehensive collection of the band in all its incarnations. Comprehensive collection of the band in all its incarnations.

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August 05, 2010
This band has certainly had a strange progression. Although there was some continuity through Grace Slick, I think membership changes had a lot to do with the fluctuating styles. I prefer the Jefferson Airplane incarnation myself.
August 05, 2010
Well there was a style to suit just about everyone!
August 05, 2010
It is interesting to contrast their progression with that of their contemporaries, the Grateful Dead. The Grateful Dead had a relatively stable lineup throughout the same time period (except for keyboards mostly) and didn't deviate a whole lot from their original style.
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Paul Tognetti ()
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I guess I would qualify as a frustrated writer. My work requires very little writing and so since 1999 I have been writing reviews on non-fiction books and anthology CD's on amazon.com. I never could … more
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One of the oddest best-of albums in rock history, HITS documents, in chronological order, the evolution of Jefferson Airplane, a band that provided the soundtrack for a great deal of the '60s counterculture, into Starship, a band that provided the soundtrack for the Reagan-era Andrew McCarthy movie MANNEQUIN. Which is to say that despite the presence of ice-queen vocalist Grace Slick on just about every song here, there's next to no stylistic connection between the Airplane's acid/folk/rock agit-pop, Jefferson Starship's slick, neo-Fleetwood Mac California-pop-lite, and Starship's even slicker '80s new-wave ear candy. Of course, the fact that the same band (nominally) could be responsible for both "White Rabbit" and "We Built This City" is obviously a metaphor for something; whether it's devolution or progress is a judgment call listeners will have to make for themselves.

Track List

It's No Secret
Somebody to Love
White Rabbit
Embryonic Journey
Plastic Fantastic Lover
Comin' Back to Me
Ballad of You and Me and Pooneil
Greasy Heart
Crown of Creation
Wooden Ships
Good Shepherd
Have You Seen the Saucers
Pretty as You Feel
Third Week in the Chelsea
Long John Silver
Ride the Tiger
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Artist: Jefferson Airplane, Jefferson Starship, Starship
Label: RCA Victor Europe
Genre: Rock
Release Date: September 29, 1998

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