Greatest Hits: Shining Like a National Guitar

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The various compilations of Paul Simon's work that have been released with his input over the years have been an unsatisfying bunch, leaving out key tracks in favor of the artist's own favorites, so that none of them could be recommended unreservedly. The international release Greatest Hits: Shining Like a National Guitar is by far the best such collection ever released, selecting 19 songs from Simon's studio recordings originally released over a 25-year period between 1972 and 1997. All ten of Simon's British chart singles are included, though American fans picking up import copies will note the omission of a number of U.S. singles, notably the Top 40 hits "American ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The various compilations of Paul Simon's work that have been released with his input over the years have been an unsatisfying bunch, leaving out key tracks in favor of the artist's own favorites, so that none of them could be recommended unreservedly. The international release Greatest Hits: Shining Like a National Guitar is by far the best such collection ever released, selecting 19 songs from Simon's studio recordings originally released over a 25-year period between 1972 and 1997. All ten of Simon's British chart singles are included, though American fans picking up import copies will note the omission of a number of U.S. singles, notably the Top 40 hits "American Tune" which, confusingly, is discussed in Peter Doggett's liner notes as if it were present, "Gone at Last," and "One-Trick Pony." That leaves room for plenty of album tracks, and Simon shows consistency in his choices, again picking, for example, "Rene and Georgette Magritte with Their Dog After the War" and "Hearts and Bones" from Hearts and Bones, just as he did for 1993's The Paul Simon Anthology, rather than, say, "Train in the Distance" which Doggett talks up or the exquisite "Song About the Moon." But that's just a way of saying that Simon has too many great songs to fit onto a single disc, and, of course, it is the fate of underrated albums like Hearts and Bones and Songs from The Capeman to be underrepresented on greatest hits albums. The real strength of this one lies in its sequencing. Simon has experimented with many different styles of writing and music, which would seem to make it difficult to fit the light jazz of "Still Crazy After All These Years" with the South African and Brazilian music he employed later on. But this compilation reveals the similarities between, for example, "You Can Call Me Al" from 1986's Graceland and "Mother and Child Reunion" from 1972's Paul Simon, which follows it, just as the distinctive march-drum pattern of "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover" segues well into the massive drums of "The Obvious Child." It's impossible to listen to this album and not marvel at Simon's accomplishment as a musician over a quarter century, and that's as strong a recommendation for a compilation as anybody should need. Unfortunately, though it was a chart success across Europe, Greatest Hits: Shining Like a National Guitar was not issued in the U.S., remaining a pricey import, and with the release only a few months later of a new Simon album, You're the One, it seemed unlikely it would get stateside release. Note that, as is typical on Simon compilations, several tracks have been trimmed slightly to fit so many songs on one CD.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/23/2000
  • Label: Wea International
  • UPC: 632427619826
  • Catalog Number: 47721

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Paul Simon Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Electric Bass, Bass Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals, 6-string bass, Hi String, 6-string Electric Bass
The Oak Ridge Boys Vocals, Background Vocals
The Dixie Hummingbirds Background Vocals
John Tropea Electric Guitar
Ladysmith Black Mambazo Vocals
NanĂ¡ Vasconcelos Electric Guitar, Berimbau, gourd
Patti Austin Background Vocals
Adrian Belew Synthesizer Guitar
The Everly Brothers Vocals
Phoebe Snow Background Vocals
Michael Brecker Synthesizer, Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone, EWI
Ronnie Cuber Baritone Saxophone, Bass Saxophone
Jon Faddis Trumpet
Rob Mounsey Synthesizer
Lew Soloff Trumpet
Pete Carr Guitar, Electric Guitar
Alex Foster Alto Saxophone
The Harptones Background Vocals
Arlen Roth Acoustic Guitar, Guitar
Kevin Harrison Background Vocals
Ralph MacDonald Percussion
Jackie Jackson Bass
Uakti Percussion
Milton Cardona Background Vocals
Kim Wilson Harmonica
Airto Moreira Percussion
Ademola Adepoju Pedal Steel Guitar
Clifton Anderson Trombone
Bobby Allende Bell-tree
Robby Ameen Drums
Mingo Araujo Conga, Triangle
Dave Bargeron Trombone
John Beal Bass
Barry Beckett Keyboards, Electric Piano
Crusher Bennett Shaker
Briz Background Vocals
Hux Brown Guitar
Wells Christy Synclavier
Kim Cissel Trombone
Cissy Houston Background Vocals
Ray de la Paz Background Vocals
Charles Doherty Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Shannon Ford Drums
Steve Gadd Drums
Eric Gale Electric Guitar
Earl Gardner Trumpet
Russell George Bass
Morris Goldberg Penny Whistle
Paul Goldberg Penny Whistle
Myrna Lynn Gomila Background Vocals
Winston Grennan Drums
Roger Hawkins Drums
Oscar Hernandez Synthesizer, Celeste, Glockenspiel, Vibes
Neville Hinds Organ
Bill Holloman Trumpet, Tenor Saxophone
David Hood Bass
Errol Ince Trumpet
Anthony Jackson Bass, Contrabass Guitar
Rev. Claude Jeter Falsetto
Jimmy Johnson Electric Guitar
Larry Knechtel Piano
Denzel Laing Percussion
Tony Levin Bass
Michael Mainieri Jr. Marimbas, Vibes
Hugh McCracken Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar
Clyde Mitchell Trumpet
Isaac Mtshali Drums
Youssou N'Dour Percussion
Vincent Nguini Bass, Guitar
Onward Brass Band Horn, Overdubs, Musician
Horace Ott Piano
Dean Parks Hi String
Greg Phillinganes Synthesizer
Michael Ramos Accordion
Alan Rubin Trumpet
Robert Sabino Piano
Valerie Simpson Background Vocals
Von Eva Sims Background Vocals
David Spinozza Guitar
Richard Tee Synthesizer, Piano, fender rhodes
Assane Thaim Percussion
Robby Turner Pedal Steel Guitar
Paul Livant Guitar
Makhaya Mahlangu Percussion
Renelie Stafford Background Vocals
Asante Drums
Ken Asher Organ, Piano
Ronald E. Brecker Trumpet
Babacar Faye Percussion
Forere Motloheloa Accordion
Leonard Pickett Tenor Saxophone
Deidre Tuck Background Vocals
Bakithi Kumalo Bass
Chikapa "Ray" Phiri Guitar
Oriente Lopez fender rhodes
Michael Mainieri III Marimbas
Teana Rodriguez Background Vocals
Sara Ramirez Vocals
Husks Brown Guitar
Wallace "Red Rat" Wilson Rhythm Guitar
Groupo Cultural OLODUM Drums
Yo Yo De La Nelson Chakeire
Technical Credits
Paul Simon Composer, Producer
Bob James String Arrangements, Woodwind Arrangement
The Harptones Vocal Arrangements
Georges Delerue Orchestration
Dave Grusin Horn Arrangements
Lynn Goldsmith Cover Photo
Roy Halee Producer
Oscar Hernandez Producer, Vibe Master
Phil Ramone Producer
Joseph Shabalala Composer, Contributor
Russ Titelman Producer
Antonio Luis Alves de Souza Director
Peter Doggett Liner Notes
Forere Motloheloa Composer
Michael Mainieri III Vibe Master
The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section Producer
Neguinho DeSouza Alves (Do Samba Contributor
Antonio Luis Director
Eleanor Swan Contributor
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