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Release Round-Up: Week of June 28

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Queen, News of the World / Jazz / The Game / Flash Gordon / Hot Space: Deluxe Editions (Island/UMC)

The next wave of Queen remasters are out this Monday in England. If you don’t want to get them as imports, you’ll have to wait until September to get these as domestic reissues – by which point I’d imagine the third wave will be out in the U.K. (Official site)

Alice Cooper, Old School 1964-1974 (Bigger Picture)

This desk-sized box includes not pencils, not books, not black eyeliner, but four CDs of unreleased rarities from Alice Cooper’s early years, along with some vinyl goodies and extra swag. (Official site)

Teena Marie, Lady T: Expanded Edition / Irons in the Fire: Expanded Edition / First Class Love: Rare Tee (Hip-o Select/Motown)

The Ivory Queen of Soul is honored with expansions of her second and third Motown LPs plus a double-disc set of unreleased tracks (originally issued as a smaller-scale digital set). (Hip-o Select: Lady T, Irons, Rare Tee)

Alicia Keys, Songs in A Minor: Deluxe and Collector’s Editions (J/Legacy)

To mark ten(!) years since Alicia Keys’ first album was released, it’s been expanded with a host of vault material (and in the case of the collector’s edition, a new documentary). The original album has also been pressed on vinyl, too. (Official site)

The Left Banke, Walk Away Renee/Pretty Ballerina / The Left Banke Too (Sundazed)

Two long-out-of-print albums by The Left Banke, newly reissued on CD and vinyl (Sundazed: Walk Away CD, LP; Too CD, LP; CD bundle, LP bundle, CD and LP bundle)

The Doobie Brothers, Live at The Greek Theatre 1982: Farewell Tour (Eagle Rock)

A CD (or DVD – not both, sadly) set of The Doobies’ last tour before Michael McDonald went full-on solo, featuring guest appearances by a handful of former members. (Eagle Rock: CD, DVD)

Deep Purple, Phoenix Rising (Eagle Rock)

A treasure from the vault – documentary footage of the band’s live tour in 1975 – and all the rock and roll insanity that followed. (Eagle Rock: CD/DVD, Blu-Ray)

Various Artists, The Best of Soul Train Live (Time-Life)

I’ve been on a Soul Train kick lately, and it excites me to see this compilation of a handful of live performances on the long-running show get an official CD release. (Amazon)

Buddy Guy with Junior Wells and Junior Mance, Buddy and The Juniors (Hip-o Select/Verve)

The U.S. CD debut of this loose, laid-back record from the Blue Thumb catalogue. (Hip-o Select)

Paul McCartney, Run Devil Run (MPL/Concord)

Not nearly as expansive as the last McCartney reissues – this one’s just a straight-up remaster. (Official site)

Alicia’s “A Minor” Expansion Has a Track List

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The 10th anniversary reissues of Alicia Keys’ Songs in A Minor now have track lists with some tantalizing unreleased material – but how much you get, as is so often the case, depends on which version you buy.

As previously reported, the singer/songwriter/pianist’s Grammy-winning debut LP is being expanded across several formats for its 10th anniversary. A “deluxe edition” will feature a bonus EP of rare and unreleased songs, including two previously unheard demos. A long-boxed “collector’s edition” will include the album, a bonus disc of 12 songs (the six from the EP and six more unreleased cuts) and a DVD featuring music videos and a newly-filmed documentary on the album. (A newly-edited meld of the “Fallin'” and “A Woman’s Worth” videos – entitled A Harlem Love Story – will be featured as an enhanced feature on the second disc of the deluxe edition. And, for the first time, the original album will also get a commercial release as a double-disc 180-gram vinyl set.

All the sets are out on June 28. Hit the jump for the full track list breakdown!

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

May 18, 2011 at 18:54

Fallin’ All Over Again: Alicia Keys’ Debut to Be Reissued This Summer

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Has it really been a decade since that rich, soulful voice broke through the radio with a heartfelt “I keep on fallin’….i-i-i-i-in…and out…”?

It was the voice of one Alicia Keys, the Hell’s Kitchen-raised singer/songwriter/pianist, all of 20 years old at the time. She had a stunningly impressive resume for her age – a classically-trained pianist who started writing songs at 14, the valedictorian of New York City’s Professional Performing Arts School at 16, two failed record deals with Columbia and Arista that led to only one song buried on the Men in Black soundtrack by 18.

But she didn’t give up, and with a rather respectable guardian angel in the music industry – super-producer Clive Davis, who built the J Records label out of the ashes of Arista – she recorded her first album, Songs in A Minor, a massive crossover hit in the summer of 2001. The album moved more than 6 million copies and spawned two Top 5 hits, including the chart-topping “Fallin’,” which spent six weeks in the pole position, and “A Woman’s Worth.” Keys wrote or co-wrote nearly every tune herself alongside some top producers and songwriters, including Jermaine Dupri and Kandi Burruss. (One notable exception was her smoldering cover of “How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore?,” the great B-side to Prince’s “1999.”) Keys’ reputation was sealed the next year, when newspapers all over the world reprinted photos of her, topped with a black fedora and tightly braided hair, clutching the five Grammys her album won.

Now, ten years later, J Records is reissuing Songs in A Minor in a variety of formats in June. The first format, a two-disc deluxe edition, will feature the original album alongside a raft of as-yet-fully-unannounced bonus material. Keys’ official site has confirmed that demos, alternate takes, remixes and live material will be included, and specifically mentioned several songs by name, including a remix of “A Woman’s Worth” featuring rapper Nas, an alternate version of “Fallin’” from the soundtrack to Ali and previously unreleased cuts “Typewriter,” “If I Was Your Woman (Original Funky Demo)” and “Butterflyz (The Drumline Mix).”

Serious fans are going to want to get their hands on a three-disc collector’s edition, which takes the two CDs and puts them in specially-sized packaging alongside a new documentary on DVD of the making of the record. And vinyl-heads rejoice: a double-LP version will be released, too, marking the first time the album has ever been pressed to vinyl.

The celebration kicks off on June 28 in stores everywhere, and Keys will take the celebration a few steps further; tickets go on sale in May for Piano & I, a one-night-only performance at New York City’s Beacon Theatre in which Keys will perform the album in its entirety and more. A special on Songs in A Minor is also planned to air on BET in June.

Stick with us for the track lists as they arrive, and go to Amazon’s pre-order links here (Deluxe Edition), here (Collector’s Edition) and here (vinyl version).

Written by Mike Duquette

April 13, 2011 at 14:39

Posted in Alicia Keys, News, Reissues