Growing up in the 70s, I discovered a number of bands, and their back-catalogues, through compilation albums. It surprises many people when I tell them my favourite Beatles album is the Red Album, for example.
The Rolling Stones – Hot Rocks 1964-1971
The South African version had a different track listing to the US release. Included ‘Little Red Rooster’ and ‘Under The Boardwalk’ for example, and omitted ‘Brown Sugar’ and ‘Wild Horses’.
Track list for South African Album
Time Is On My Side
Little Red Rooster
Under The Boardwalk
Heart Of Stone
Play With Fire
(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
Get Off Of My Cloud
As Tears Go By
Mothers Little Helper
19th Nervous Breakdown
Paint It Black
Under My Thumb
Let’s Spend The Night Together
Jumpin’ Jack Flash
Street Fighting Man
Sympathy For The Devil
Honky Tonk Women
You Can’t Always Get What You Want (single version)
Two double albums, with every song a masterpiece. When these were re-released on CD in 1993, I bought them the day they came out. And though the whole of the Red Album could have been fitted onto a single CD, I didn’t mind paying full double album price. How many double CDs have so many classic chart-topping and million-selling songs on them? Worth every cent.
American Graffiti (soundtrack)
My introduction to rock ‘n roll history.
The Who – Pinball And Other Wizards 1965-1975 (South African only release)
Actually only goes up to 1971, despite the title, but a great collection, nonetheless. I have compiled an imaginary disc 3 to help fill in the gap.
Triple album collection from Glastonbury Fayre in 1971. A strange mixture of artists and genres that introduced me to bands like Gong, Pink Fairies and The Grateful Dead.
Thin Lizzy – The Continuing Saga Of The Aging Orphans
Great album, that helped me discover the early years of Thin Lizzy, though I already knew Vagabonds Of The Western World, which is still one of my all-time favourite albums.
The Moody Blues – This Is The Moody Blues
A double compilation album with all the songs crossfading into each other. Like Pink Floyd’s Echoes collection many years later.
Suck It And See
Double album sampler from Vertigo, this time. From Folk (Magna Carta) to Metal (Black Sabbath) and most places in-between. The South African pressing had a different track listing to the overseas version.
Let The Good Times Roll (soundtrack)
Not really a compilation but the soundtrack to a film of a live rock and roll revival, that I saw over and over again. Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Little Richard, Chubby Checker and others just blew me away. And the sampled soundbites from old TV shows, backstage comments and DJ introductions made it even better.
Mabu Vinyl in Cape Town is a place that reminds me of the type of record store I used to hang-out in when I was a teenager.