Good Motown anthology?
October 25, 2005 3:02 PM   Subscribe

My sister-in-law loves Motown and my wife and I would like to get her an anthology of the big hits, hopefully not more than three disks (because we can't spend big bucks this Xmas). Motown reissues being a notoriously tricky subject, can anybody recommend one with good sound and good value?
posted by languagehat to Media & Arts (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Not a reissue, but fun is the Motown Remixed album that came out earlier this year!
posted by k8t at 3:30 PM on October 25, 2005

It's not Motown, and it's 9 CDs so it's probably out of your price range anyway, but the Stax/Volt box set is a worthy addition to the collection of anyone who enjoys classic R&B and soul. Put it on your wishlist.
posted by kindall at 3:35 PM on October 25, 2005

A buddy of mine used to be a producer of Motown reissues/anthologies... I have an email out to him to see which ones he recommends.
posted by scody at 3:41 PM on October 25, 2005

Best answer: I'm guessing you can't do better than this. Four discs, $35, even cheaper used.
posted by kimota at 3:46 PM on October 25, 2005

Response by poster: kimota, that looks great! Unless scody's buddy disses it and/or suggests a better alternative, we'll go with that.
posted by languagehat at 4:02 PM on October 25, 2005

Best answer: Languagehat, I just borrowed that Hitsville compilation (recommended by kimota) from the library two weeks ago. I'm not Motown scholar, but I loved the collection. It's got some great songs on it, especially as things kick into high gear in the mid-sixties. I recommend it. There's a second Hitsville set, but it's not nearly as good.
posted by jdroth at 4:48 PM on October 25, 2005

Response by poster: OK, that pushed me over the edge—I just ordered it. Thanks, all!
posted by languagehat at 5:21 PM on October 25, 2005

Motown Remixed is great fun, like k8t said. My four-year-old's favorite song at the moment is "I Just Want to Celebrate" by Rare Earth.
posted by SashaPT at 7:25 PM on October 25, 2005

Best answer: I second, third and fourth the Hitsville compilation...although you already ordered it, so I guess you don't need the recommendation. But it's fabulous, and has a mix of the standard Motown hits (Shop Around, ABC, For Once in My Life, etc) as well as some terrific but far lesser-known songs from the Velvelettes, Jr. Walker and Chris Clark. And don't bother with Hitsville's just a collection of songs from the 70s and later, after Motown lots its unique identity and classic sound.
posted by apple scruff at 8:44 AM on October 26, 2005

I heard back from my friend last night (he was out of town and didn't get my message till then), and he recommended the Hitsville comp as well! He had a few other suggestions too, though, so if you find yourself wanting to augment your gift down the road with even more amazing Motown box sets, drop me a line and I'll pass on his other recommendations.
posted by scody at 3:21 PM on October 28, 2005

Response by poster: It was a big hit. Thank, all!
posted by languagehat at 6:36 AM on November 12, 2005

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