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Perhaps the most gifted and versatile vocalist of her generation.

  • Jan 16, 2009
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When you pause to consider Linda Ronstadt's entire body of work over a period of four decades it it difficult not to come to the conclusion that Linda really is one of the great singers of the past half century.  She is more than capable of singing all manner of material from rock and roll to country to tunes from the Great American Songbook.  In 2003 Rhino records released the outstanding single disc anthology "The Very Best of Linda Ronstadt".  Just one listen to this disc should make you a huge fan.

"The Very Best of Linda Ronstadt" offers 21 tracks featuring some of Linda's biggest singles and most memorable recordings.  In 1965 Linda Ronstadt moved to Los Angeles and was a founding member of the Stone Poneys.  Within a relatively short period of time the group signed a recording contract with Capitol records and in 1967 had a pretty impressive Top 20 hit with a tune called "Different Drum".  Linda did a terrific job singing lead on that record and Capitol decided that they had a potential star on their hands.  In 1970, Linda Ronstadt would have her very first hit as a solo artist.  The song "Long Long Time" remains my very favorite Ronstadt tune of all time.  Here is the most poignant song about the pain of unrequited love that you will ever hear.  I still get chills each and every time I hear it.  Also featured in "The Very Best of Linda Ronstadt" are a couple of other hits from her days at Capitol in the early 1970's including "When Will I Be Loved" and her only #1 record "You're No Good" from 1974.

In 1975 Linda made the move to Asylum records and went to work with a new set of producers.  Her first big hit for the label was a remake of the Martha and the Vandellas 1963 hit "Heat Wave".  Over the next five years Linda would experience tremendous success recording new versions of old favorites such as "Blue Bayou", "It's So Easy" "That'll Be The Day" and even "Hurt So Bad" which was a Top Ten hit for her in 1980.  All are included here.  Linda Ronstadt's career would take an incredible turn in 1983 when she agreed to record an album of standards with the legendary bandleader Nelson Riddle and His Orchestra.  The album "What's New" was a monumental success and remains one of my favorite albums ever.  I was disappointed that this particular collection does not include any tunes from this album.  Having said that I was quite pleased to see that Rhino saw fit to include a pair of outstanding Top Ten hits that Linda had in the late 1980's.  Both "Somewhere Out There" recorded with James Ingram and "All of Me", a duet with Aaron Neville, made it all the way to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

In my humble opinion, the "Very Best of Linda Ronstadt" is easily the best compilation of her hits ever assembled.  I remain a huge fan and have purchased a number of her albums over the years.  If you do not own any one her albums then this would be a great place to start .   Very highly recommended!
Linda Ronstadt

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July 21, 2009
I love Linda Ronstandt and have this CD. Nice review.....very informative.
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Paul Tognetti ()
Ranked #2
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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Her first and only career-spanning single-disc hits collection gathers 21 tracks released on Capitol and Elektra/Asylum between 1967 and 1993. Features the #1 pop smash "You're No Good," plus Top-10 classics "When Will I Be Loved," "Blue Bayou," and "It's So Easy."  Linda Ronstadt got her start singing with the L.A. folk trio the Stone Poneys. In 1967 they released their debut album, Stone Poneys Featuring Linda Ronstadt. Over the next year the group released two more albums and scored a hit with the Michael Nesmith-penned "Different Drum." Beginning with 1969's Hand Sown Home Grown, Ronstadt's first few solo albums adopted a country rock flavor, foreshadowing the sound that would come to define the early-'70s L.A. music scene. In fact, her self-titled third album featured a group of musicians later known as The Eagles. Her unique style culminated in 1975's Heart Like A Wheel, a landmark album of California mellow rock. Following several successful variations on her signature sound, Ronstadt challenged herself throughout the '80s and '90s, broadening her palette with New Wave, standards, Latin folk, and Brill Building pop.

Tracks When Will I Be Loved? (Love Is Like A) Heat Wave You're No Good It's So Easy Blue Bayou Just One Look Different Drum Poor, Poor Pitiful Me Tracks of My Tears That'll Be the Day Ooh Baby Baby Long Long Time Back in the U.S.A. Love Is a Rose Hurt So Bad Heart Like a Wheel Adios Somewhere Out There Don't Know Much All My Life Winter ...

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Performer: Linda Ronstadt
Release Date: September 24, 2002
Label: Rhino
Genre: Pop Vocal
Release Date: September 24, 2002
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