The Best of Linda Ronstadt: The Capitol Years

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
The title of Capitol's 2006 collection The Best of Linda Ronstadt: The Capitol Years is a little misleading: this isn't a mere single-disc overview of hits; this double-disc set is a virtual complete recorded works of Ronstadt's stint at Capitol between 1969-1974, encompassing the entirety of four albums -- her 1969 solo debut, Hand Sown..Home Grown, its 1970 sequel, Silk Purse, 1972's self-titled third album, and its 1974 follow-up, Heart Like a Wheel, which brought her stardom -- plus five bonus tracks, two of them capturing her live at The Troubadour. Apart from Heart Like a Wheel, these LPs for Capitol were not hits, due partially to the fact that Ronstadt ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
The title of Capitol's 2006 collection The Best of Linda Ronstadt: The Capitol Years is a little misleading: this isn't a mere single-disc overview of hits; this double-disc set is a virtual complete recorded works of Ronstadt's stint at Capitol between 1969-1974, encompassing the entirety of four albums -- her 1969 solo debut, Hand Sown..Home Grown, its 1970 sequel, Silk Purse, 1972's self-titled third album, and its 1974 follow-up, Heart Like a Wheel, which brought her stardom -- plus five bonus tracks, two of them capturing her live at The Troubadour. Apart from Heart Like a Wheel, these LPs for Capitol were not hits, due partially to the fact that Ronstadt was still finding her footing as a record-maker during this time. It wasn't until her eponymous third album that everything began to click, thanks to her finally finding a sympathetic backing band who would become Eagles not long after this record was cut, and then producer Peter Asher came in for Heart Like a Wheel and helped her find a slick, streamlined variation of her soft country-rock. And while it's true that her first two albums sometimes find her stumbling as she tries to blend country, pop, and folk while working with session musicians some less-charitable listeners might find such period flair as fuzz-toned steel guitar as a detriment, too, although there's a certain undeniable charm to these dated sounds, they have aged remarkably well, warts and all, because they showcase a singer with excellent taste and restless ambition. Ronstadt was never a songwriter, but she had a terrific ear for good songs, choosing them primarily from the plethora of great singer/songwriters who cluttered the landscape in the late '60s and early '70s -- not just Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Jackson Browne, and Randy Newman, but Fred Neil, Mickey Newbury, Paul Siebel, Gene Clark, Bernie Leadon, Livingston Taylor, Eric Andersen, John D. Loudermilk, Wayne Raney, and Lowell George, among others. Her interpretations, while not idiosyncratic, were energetic and impassioned, an appealing blend of laid-back Californian country-rock, folky songs, and pop attitude that was enjoyable even when it wasn't always entirely successful. Yet, in retrospect, especially in the context of this generous collection, the awkwardness of her first two albums no longer seems so pronounced. In fact, Hand Sown...Home Grown and Silk Purse look like flawed minor gems, while Linda Ronstadt and Heart Like a Wheel still stand as high-water marks of '70s Californian soft rock. And this double-disc set, boasting fine remastering and liner notes which remain good even if there are no details about the bonus tracks and Lowell George is credited as "George Lowell", is the definitive portrait of Ronstadt at her creative peak, when she was a vital part of Los Angeles' thriving music scene of the early '70s.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/30/2006
  • Label: Emi Europe Generic
  • UPC: 724356075122
  • Catalog Number: 5607512
  • Sales rank: 2,983

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Linda Ronstadt Primary Artist
Technical Credits
Johnny Cash Composer
Mickey Newbury Composer
Mel Tillis Composer
Eric Andersen Composer
Woody Guthrie Composer
Fred Neil Composer
Paul Siebel Composer
Paul Anka Composer
Jackson Browne Composer
Gene Clark Composer
Bob Dylan Composer
Carole King Composer
Randy Newman Composer
Linda Ronstadt Arranger
James Taylor Composer
Neil Young Composer
Irving Mills Composer
Phil Everly Composer
Lowell George Composer
Gerry Goffin Composer
Eric Kaz Composer
Livingston Taylor Composer
Dewey Terry Composer
Dan Penn Composer
Earl Ball Composer
Hank Cochran Composer
Paul Craft Composer
Chip Douglas Composer
Cliff Friend Composer
Steve Gillette Composer
Don "Sugarcane" Harris Composer
Harlan Howard Composer
Fred Karlin Composer
Bernie Leadon Composer
Huddie Ledbetter Composer
John A. Lomax Composer
John D. Loudermilk Composer
Elliot Mazer Arranger
Anna McGarrigle Composer
Ron McMaster Mastering
Chips Moman Composer
Ralph Mooney Composer
Wayne Raney Composer
Dick Reynolds Composer
J.D. Souther Composer
Gary White Composer
Hank Williams Composer
Ken Edwards Composer
Barry Alfonso Liner Notes
Tylwth Kymry Composer
Raynard Miner Composer
Tom Recchion Art Direction
Ivy J. "Jimmy" Bryant Composer
Clint Ballard Jr. Composer
Chuck Seals Composer
Jack Rhodes Composer
Roy Cash Composer
Tom Campbell Composer
Traditional Composer
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A reviewer

    Linda's solo efforts after the Stone Poneys also includes her smash "Heart Like A Wheel" that put her on the road to megastardom. All four solo efforts are here in pristine 24 bit remastering including some rare alternate/bonus tracks (a particularly fine live version of her hit "Long, Long Time". This release is historically important to show Ronstadt's growth as a singer. Although few can beat her when it comes to her "chops", when you hear tracks from "Heart" and compare them to the earlier Lps, the listener will find a songstress in search of a consistently fine full Lp. Now if WEA would release some of her great 70s material on 24 bit, many fans would be happy. Her CD counterparts and compressed and lack the depth and clarity of their Lp counterparts. WEA, through Mobile Fidelity has released her recording for the group "Don't Cry Now". So let's see more.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews