Neil Diamond's five-decade career as a singer, songwriter, and performer has certainly been a successful one by any standard. He’s sold well over 115 million records worldwide to date and has had eight number one singles ("Cracklin Rosie," "Song Sung Blue," "Desiree," "You Don't Bring Me Flowers," "Love on the Rocks," "America," "Yesterday's Songs," and "Heartlight"), and if he hasn't always generated the kind of critical respect he probably deserves, he’s been a steady and dependable artist who has managed to keep his large core audience happy. This 23-track set surveys the whole of Diamond's recording career, collecting his key and signature sides, beginning with his first hits for Bang Records in the mid-'60s through his commercial peak for Uni/MCA between 1968 and 1972, cuts from 1980’s The Jazz Singer (a soundtrack album that went platinum five times over on Capitol Records), and ending with tracks from Diamond's two Rick Rubin-produced albums, 2005’s 12 Songs and 2008’s Home Before Dark, on Columbia Records.
Seven years in the making, Kramer has conjured what just might be his greatest CD ever—a brilliant tribute to the Jewish composers who made the legendary Brill Building in Times Square one of the centers of popular music songwriting for decades. From Bacharach to Carole King, Neil Diamond, Leiber and Stoller and Doc Pomus, these are the songs that made performers into superstars. Deeply personal yet wholly universal, Kramer captures all the poignancy and humor of these timeless classics. Welcome to The Brill Building!
Since Sedaka's Back was a hit, Neil Sedaka and co-producer Graham Gouldman saw no reason to mess with success on its follow-up, The Hungry Years. The record is essentially Sedaka's Still Back, complete with the same adult contemporary/MOR material and slick production that marked its predecessor…
While Neil Diamond's The Christmas Album is designed almost exclusively for his adult contemporary constituency, the vocalist still manages to light up most of the obviousness of these standards with his trademark gritty soul and flair for inflection.