He launched his career as a fill-in for the recently deceased Buddy Holly, Bobby Vee scored several pop hits during the early '60s, that notorious period of popular music sandwiched between the birth of rock & roll and the rise of the British Invasion. Though a few of his singles – "Rubber Ball," for one – were as innocuous as anything else from the era, Vee had a knack for infectious Brill Building pop, thanks to his ebullient voice as well as the cadre of songwriters standing behind him.
Adam Faith was a contemporary of early British rock & rollers like Cliff Richard and Billy Fury, but Faith's sound was less Elvis Presley-derived and more aligned with teen idol pop such as that of Bobby Vee (who covered Faith's number one U.K. hit "What Do You Want?"). John Barry had a hand in Faith's early efforts, and the instrumental arrangements are truly remarkable, from the surprising hoedown-style fiddling on "Don't That Beat All" to the musical saw on "What Now." In fact, it is the arrangements that elevate this music above standard teen idol fare. Faith rocked occasionally, as on "Made You," had moderate success adapting to the changes wrought by the Beatles, and later worked with folk-pop material. The Very Best of Adam Faith tracks his evolution by collecting 26 U.K. chart hits from 1959-1966, four of which were recorded with the Roulettes. Faith had two minor hits in the U.S. in 1965 that aren't included, but The Very Best of Adam Faith is otherwise an exemplary and essential anthology of an early British pop star.