Greatest Hits [Collectables]
Back-Trac Records was founded in the 1980s with the philosophy that there were certain recording stars who had only a handful of hits and that there should be low-priced compilations consisting of those hits and not much else. Back-Trac generally licensed only about ten tracks per artist from the major labels for their bargain-basement LPs and cassettes. Gary Puckett & the Union Gap were perfect for this no-frills approach, and their Back-Trac album was typical. The group scored five Top Ten hits in the late '60s -- "Woman, Woman," "Young Girl," "Lady Willpower," "Over You," and "This Girl Is a Woman Now" -- and all five were included, along with the Top 40 hit "Let's Give Adam and Eve Another Chance." ("Don't Give in to Him," a Top 20 hit and the Union Gap's one other chart entry, was missing.) For the other four tracks, the compilers chose Union Gap covers of two familiar songs, the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody" and Neil Diamond's "Kentucky Woman," plus two more B-sides written by the band's producer, Jerry Fuller, who had also written most of their hits, "Could I," and "Daylight Stranger." The collection has proved surprisingly durable. In 1995, long after Back-Trac Records disappeared, Sony Music Special Products reissued the album on CD. In 2002, it was licensed by Collectables Records for its "Priceless Collection" series, with brief liner notes by Al Fichera added. And it continues to fulfill the same function it always has. If you remember a couple of Union Gap hits and want to hear them on a cheap album, this disc is for you.