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The Greatest Hits of All

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George Benson 7/8/2003

Review

Basically, this "greatest hits of all" is simply that: the highest-charting tracks in George Benson's long career -- highest-charting pop and adult contemporary tracks, that is. Benson had been on the scene over a decade before signing with Warner Bros., and many of his jukebox and R&B hits were recorded for Creed Taylor's CTI label. Some of Benson's recorded work that held those hits has been reissued in the past two years. Of the Warner material, they have gauged success by chart placement -- not sales, not radio play, not artist choice. Therefore, while the stellar tracks from Breezin', namely "This Masquerade," which charted at number one on pop and R&B in Billboard, and its follow-up, the album's title track, kick the album off along with "On Broadway" and "The Greatest Love of All." But there are many stops along the way to the present from that 1976 issue, such as Benson's singularly beautiful read of "Unchained Melody," "Never Give Up on a Good Thing," and his duet with Aretha Franklin, which stormed through the radios of literally millions of lovers, "Love All the Hurt Away." Benson's streak is remarkable in that he consistently recorded tracks of similar weight, length, and dynamic with essentially the same timeless production that took him to the top in the first place. Thus, cuts such as "I Just Wanna Hang Around You," "Kisses in the Moonlight," "Never Give Up on a Good Thing," "Shiver," "Love X Love," and "Let's Do It Again," while being very different songs, come across in exactly the same way. The formula is a winning one even today. The Greatest Hits of All may not truly have Benson's great material, but the album does tell a story of one man's ability to consistently conquer the charts for a long period of time. And that, in this day and age, is an accomplishment realized by few. Benson virtually defined the quiet storm format with his slick, sheeny, lights-down-low approach to recording, and as this collection evidences, this made him an enduring artist. For those who dig the Warner material, this is the collection to have. ~ Thom Jurek
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 This Masquerade George Benson 3:22
  3. 2 Breezin' George Benson 5:40
  4. 3 Greatest Love of All George Benson 3:32
  5. 4 On Broadway George Benson 5:14
  6. 5 Love Ballad George Benson 4:19
  7. 6 Unchained Melody George Benson 3:55
  8. 7 Give Me the Night George Benson 3:43
  9. 8 Love X Love George Benson 3:49
  10. 9 Turn Your Love Around George Benson 3:51
  11. 10 Love All the Hurt Away George Benson 4:9
  12. 11 Never Give Up on a Good Thing George Benson 4:6
  13. 12 Being With You George Benson 3:55
  14. 13 Lady Love Me (One More Time) George Benson 4:1
  15. 14 20/20 George Benson 4:5
  16. 15 I Just Wanna Hang Around You George Benson 3:55
  17. 16 Kisses in the Moonlight George Benson 3:55
  18. 17 Shiver George Benson 3:36
  19. 18 Let's Do It Again George Benson 3:41
  20. 19 Standing Together George Benson 4:9

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