Producers: Neil Diamond, Tom Catalano, Chip Taylor, Chips Moman, Tommy Cogbill.
Compilation producer: Mike Ragogna.
Includes liner notes by Mike Ragogna.
Digitally remastered by Erick Labson (MCA Music Media Studios, North Hollywood, California).
An overview of the pop legend's 1969-'72 stint at MCA, THE NEIL DIAMOND COLLECTION brings together the singer/songwriter's finest studio work from this period, some of the best music he ever recorded. The 18 tracks form a definitive picture of Diamond's aesthetic. With one foot in rock and one in adult-contemporary pop, Diamond borrowed elements from folk, gospel, country, and R&B, synthesized these in his deep, expressive baritone, and delivered the whole with a dramatic flair.
COLLECTION plays like a '70s radio hits mix, with every cut except the Hollies' "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother," penned by Diamond. Nearly every track here charted, with two number ones ("Cracklin' Rosie;" "Song Sung Blue") and several others following close behind. Even lower-charting songs like "Stones," Soolaimon," and "Done Too Soon" showcase the strength, emotion, and accessibility of Diamond's enduring songcraft. COLLECTION is more thoughtfully selected than the double-disc NEIL DIAMOND GOLD, and has superior sound and more tracks than 12 GREATEST HITS. A perfect retrospective of an important artist, COLLECTION is the finest available anthology of Diamond's early work.