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Do you frown upon buying or those who buy "Best Of..." CDs?

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Do you frown upon buying or those who buy "Best Of..." CDs?

Old 06-17-03, 02:21 AM
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Do you frown upon buying or those who buy "Best Of..." CDs?

I ask this because I'm just curious as to how many of you own "Best Of..." CDs. I, myself, don't necessarily see a problem with buying them if the artist has a large collection of albums....say, 20 and up. For example, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Van Morrison, etc. (although I plan on selling my "Best Of..." CDs and eventually getting all of these artists' albums sometime). But what I do frown upon are the "Best Of..." CDs (and those that buy them) of artists that only have say less than eight albums. For example, The Beastie Boys, Jimi Hendrix, Alice In Chains, Nirvana, The Doors, etc.

I sometimes think that people who buy "Best Of..." CDs aren't really true fans, but then I remember that I have a couple. I brought this up because I was just now thinking of buying some Beach Boys albums, but then I thought, "Wait a minute...I could just buy a greatest hits CD." Then I said to myself, "Oh yeah, but wait...greatest hits albums are for housewives and little girls." So, I'm deciding to go with a few albums to start with. I personally prefer having albums, anyway.
Old 06-17-03, 02:34 AM
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Well...I think it all depends on the artist/band. Some of them really can't sustain an entire album so a quickly-thrown-together GH album [with the requisite "two BRAND NEW tracks" included] is ideal.

And on the other hand you have those artists which a GH album doesn't come close to doing them justice*, but being a fan, you feel obligated to buy it [with the requisite "two BRAND NEW tracks" included ].

But I suppose the real question is...how do you feel about box sets..?

* [Prince, Marvin Gaye, U2, Stevie Wonder, Parliament/Funkadelic, Bjork, Madonna, Janet Jackson -- f'rexample..]
Old 06-17-03, 06:14 AM
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I see nothing wrong with someone buying a GH album for ANY artist... even those you listed. I've got 2,000+ CD's and I only have one Doors disc which happens to be the 2-disc hits. I do have more than one Hendrix CD, but his hits disc is loaded. Crap, I think I have almost every single Ramones recording, but just picking up their greatest hits would really be enough for the casual fan (+ maybe one or two other recordings)

Sometimes it doesn't make sense owning everything. I have a single disc hits from Aretha Franklin that I like quite a bit. Later, I bought a 4-disc box set of her tunes and never listen to it. I'm going to sell it. You know, I also LOVE Van Morrison. "Tupelo Honey" and "Moondance" can't be any better, but no way would I try and buy all his albums. I'd go broke. And his hits disc is perfect for people who want a generous sampling.

Anyway, I don't think it's a big deal. Usually a hits CD + one or two featured recordings is a good way to go.
Old 06-17-03, 06:41 AM
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I have more XTC albums than any other artist in my collection, but I probably wouldn't have a single one if I hadn't picked up the "Upsy Daisy Assortment" collection and enjoyed it so much.
Old 06-17-03, 06:58 AM
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I personally try not to buy greatest hits collections, but they do serve a purpose. As mentioned by other members, compilations can help you discover a new bad, or expand your horizons. For instance, I did not buy The Doors complete studio box set until after I heard a copy of a Doors compliation from a friend, the same thing with the Ramones, and Rolling Stones.

Having said that though, you cannot call yourself a huge fan of a band if you only have a greatest hits disc. I personally only have greatest hits from the Cars, Elton John and Van Morrison.
Old 06-17-03, 08:12 AM
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It depends how much I like the band, there can be a lot of reasons to buy a greatest hits.

Some bands I don't want every CD by, so a greatest hits is fine. Others, there's no choice but to get the greatest hits, because other CDs by them are OOP, or were never released in that format. Also, there's some artists who I only really like a certain period, but that have songs (as opposed to albums) that came out later that I liked (such as Devo, I have all their early CDs, even a couple I had to import, and also I have their "Greatest Hits" and "Greatest Misses"). And sometimes, the Greatest Hits is just a great deal (like Queen-Platinum Collection 3 CD set for $16).

Last edited by Ginwen; 06-17-03 at 08:16 AM.
Old 06-17-03, 08:17 AM
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I will sometimes pick up GH comps to complete my collection, as I'm something of completist (maybe with a little touch of OCD). As someone listed above, I've got the DEVO GH's comps because they're one of my favorite bands, and I try to get everything that is released by/for/about them.

And of course I'll oftentimes pick up GH that have 'exclusive tracks'.

However, if it's an artist I'm wanting to become familiar with or learn more about, I'll usually do some reading, figure out what the earliest records are, and start there. I'd rather pick up the first couple of records in an artist's career and see if I'm into their albums, than pick up a GH thing.
Old 06-17-03, 09:01 AM
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Sometimes the true gems on albums arent the "hits" that are usally collected on greatest hits cd's.
So i perefer to buy the original releases & also GH cd's as well as box sets always throw in the more recent material that is usally really bad.
Old 06-17-03, 09:40 AM
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I couldn't care less who's a "true fan" or not for buying any CD. Some people like the artists and want to get everything by them and track their progression and hear all the rarities and such. Other people just want a CD full of familar songs that they can listen to in the car. It's not better or worse either way.

BTW, I personally have some artists who I've bought every album by and still bought their 'greatest hits' CDs for the one or two tracks that aren't available anywhere else (I've got THREE Siouxsie and the Banshee 'hits' collections and every studio album), but I've also got other artists who I've only bought the greatest hits of. (Romones, The Motels, etc.)

Then there are others who I've got one or two favorite albums of, and then bought their career spanning greatest hits CD, to supliment those albums. (Depeche Mode)
Old 06-17-03, 10:59 AM
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I by "Best of" for bands that I'm not a big enough fan of to buy all their albums. Some examples: The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, etc.
Old 06-17-03, 11:06 AM
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Originally posted by Josh Hinkle
I by "Best of" for bands that I'm not a big enough fan of to buy all their albums. Some examples: The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, etc.

I got the two U2 greatest hits albums and that's all I need. Not a big fan of them but they have some pretty good songs.
Old 06-17-03, 11:07 AM
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Some bands have very weak albums, while others have solid songs throughout. I have every Bruce Springsteen album from 1975-1992 (with the exception of 1982's Nebraska), and bought Greatest Hits in 1995 because it had Murder Incorporated, an unreleased song dating back to 1983. Otherwise, I'd have never bought that hits collection because it omitted some obvious hits.
Old 06-17-03, 11:18 AM
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GH collections definitely serve a purpose. They're great ways to own something by artists that I like but not enough to buy an extensive back catalog. For instance, I have no need to own any more Dead Milkmen than the songs that appear on Death Rides a Pale Cow: The Ultimate Collection.

What drives me nuts is when artists put one or two new songs on a greatest hits album to get their fans to spend $15 for a bunch of songs they already have.
Old 06-17-03, 11:20 AM
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Originally posted by Gdrlv


What drives me nuts is when artists put one or two new songs on a greatest hits album to get their fans to spend $15 for a bunch of songs they already have.
I have a sneaky feeling that is usually a record company decision, not an artist decision.
Old 06-17-03, 11:49 AM
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Had I not bought "Greatest Hits" albums, I would never have discovered artists like "The Doors" or Jimi Hendrix or The Who. I wasn't sure if I would like the artist, so I bought a CD, tried it out,a nd then went and bought full catalogs. I don't see an issue with it..
Old 06-17-03, 02:53 PM
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I would never frown upon anybody buying any CD, "Greatest Hits" or otherwise. If someone is posing as a huge fan even though they just have one CD, that seems odd, I suppose.

As I think back on my "Greatest Hits"-purchasing career, I've found that I've eventually got rid of most of the CDs that are the only CD in my collection (e.g., Tom Petty, the Pretenders, the Mavericks) and the "Greatest Hits" CDs still in my collection (e.g., U2, Matthew Sweet, They Might Be Giants) are from artists whose albums I (mostly) have. For me, they seem to work best to plug in some holes of my collection (for example, very early U2 albums and "Zooropa"). Otherwise, it's just 3 or 4 songs I like, which eventually leads me to get rid of the CD.
Old 06-17-03, 04:08 PM
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For me Greatest Hits albums are a nice survey of an artist's work. You listen and decide if you want to go into more depth.
Old 06-17-03, 04:31 PM
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Maybe 1/3 of my CDs are Greatest Hits or "Best Of" collections.

Ginwen & Gdrlv have probably summed it up for me already.
Old 06-17-03, 07:01 PM
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For me, the only reason to get a gh album is if you don't want to spend the extra money on the individual albums. Mostly all gh albums have one or two important or favorite songs that go missing or are edited.
Old 06-17-03, 08:07 PM
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I have a few friends who are huge music fans and own thousands of CDs and they agree that buying Greatest Hits CDs is a "no no". I have no problem with it myself.....
Old 06-17-03, 10:15 PM
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Re: Do you frown upon buying or those who buy "Best Of..." CDs?

Originally posted by Spike Jonze
"greatest hits albums are for housewives and little girls."
The first thing that I thought of when I saw this thread title was that Bruce McCulloch quote. Love that skit: "You want to be a Doors fan, you gotta do it right. It's very scientific. You gotta buy Waiting For The Sun. It's their third album, but really it's their first. We call it the departure point."

I have no problem with buying them. Heck, I have all of the Cure ones (and there are a few), but it was nice of them to throw the fans a bone and include the acoustic album (in addition to the requisite 2 new songs) with the latest one.

Though, I do admit that I opted to make my own Rolling Stones 2-disc set rather than buy the one they put out. My track selection was much better (w/out the crappy new stuff). As alluded to earlier, it's nice to have that in the car rather than lugging an entire artist's catalog with you. Granted, that's less of a problem with my mp3 player.
Old 06-18-03, 06:23 AM
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No problem with GH albums (well, one I'll explain later).

What with the godawfully high prices of CDs these days, I certainly understand the appeal. Unless you're a diehard fan, you're probably only going to want the "big" songs, anyway.

My one gripe is when bands put out goddamned greatest hits comps every couple of years. Hear that, Kiss? Aerosmith? And when they stick a couple of new songs on there, that would've been the singles on a new album. Bleh. It's like they're a bunch of lazy, greedy bastards out to fleece their fans by making one or two new songs, sticking them on yet another 2-disc "best of" album, and then charging their fans for a double-album.
Old 06-18-03, 11:46 AM
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Originally posted by Buttmunker
Some bands have very weak albums, while others have solid songs throughout. I have every Bruce Springsteen album from 1975-1992 (with the exception of 1982's Nebraska),
Not to go too far off topic, but what do you have agains Nebraska? That's a masterpiece.

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