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4Play: Dixie Chicks, Steve Winwood, Art Garfunkel, Rod Stewart

Kristi Kates - June 21st, 2010
Dixie Chicks - The Very Best of Dixie Chicks - Playlist
Although non-country music fans can be quick to consider the Chicks a
typical country-music cliche, this trio is actually more pop than one
might expect, albeit pop festooned with Western-folk harmonies. The
trio’s political expressions and sensitive lyrics also take them miles
away from what most expect of country music, collected here from the
soaring visualizations of “Wide Open Spaces” to the determined
approach of “The Long Way Around,” the ode-to-a-devoted-boyfriend
“Easy Silence,” and the feisty stance of “Not Ready to Make Nice.”


Stevie Winwood - Revolutions: The Very Best of Steve Winwood - Island

With tunes personally selected by Winwood himself, this set showcases
his solo work from the ’70s forward, 50 years in all of songs. There
are plenty you’ll recognize, if you’ve ever either seen a Blues
Brothers film or been in a restaurant with a jukebox, among them
“Gimme Some Lovin’,” “Higher Love,” and “Roll With It,” the first two
of which snagged the singer Grammy Awards. The album also includes a
re-recorded version of Winwood’s popular “Spanish Dancer,” very likely
in pre-promotion for his tour dates this summer with Santana.



Art Garfunkel - The Very Best of Art Garfunkel - Playlist

The Very Best... of Art does include most of the best-known tracks by
the less-lauded member of Simon and Garfunkel, who is, of course, a
skilled songwriter and performer in his own right. AM Radio staple “I
Only Have Eyes for You” shares space here with Garfunkel’s James
Taylor duet (“Crying in the Rain”), the retro-flute-bedecked “Bright
Eyes,” and his traditional revamp of “Barbara Allen.” Garfunkel’s 1974
staple “Second Avenue” is oddly missing, but it’s still a good overall
compilation from an underrated artist.



Rod Stewart - The Story So Far: The Very Best of Rod Stewart Remastered - Warner

The pop/rock swagger of Stewart holds up well on this sampler, which
is essentially a distillation of Rod’s biggest radio hits. His earlier
tracks (“Maggie May”) contrast with the more arena-rock lighter-waving
tunes (“You’re in My Heart”), and the more sentimental, mellow tracks
of his later career (“Downtown Train,” “Have I Told You Lately,” “This
Old Heart of Mine.”) The Storyteller: The Complete Anthology box set
is a more complete overview, as this one is missing anything even
remotely obscure, but it’s still a decent overview.

 
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