The Shangri-Las The Best of the Shangri-Las 
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- Released: February 1, 1997
- Originally Released: 1997
- Label: Polygram Uk
Q - 12/96, pp.160-1614 Stars (out of 5) - "...Mary Weiss's crystal-clear vocal combined with George 'Shadow' Morton's thunderous production to define the sound of the '60s Red Bird label....Briefly brilliant, they were troubled girls ahead of their time."
NME (Magazine) - 9/21/96, p.536 (out of 10) - "...solid..."
- 1.Remember (Walking In The Sand)
- 2.Leader Of The Pack
- 3.What Is Love?
- 4.Give Him A Great Big Kiss
- 6.Out In The Streets
- 7.Give Us Your Blessings
- 8.Heaven Only Knows
- 9.Never Again
- 10.What's A Girl Supposed To Do?
- 11.Dum Dum Ditty
- 12.Right Now And Not Later
- 13.Train From Kansas City
- 14.I Can Never Go Home Anymore
- 15.Long Live Our Love
- 16.Sophisticated Boom Boom
- 17.He Cried
- 18.Dressed In Black
- 19.Past, Present, And Future
- 21.Love You More Than Yesterday
- 22.Sweet Sounds Of Summer
- 23.I'll Never Learn
- 24.Take The Time
- 25.Footsteps On The Roof
The Shangri-Las: Mary Weiss, Elizabeth Weiss, Marguerite Ganser, Maryann Ganser (vocals).
Producers: Shadow Morton (tracks 1-11, 13-25); Ronald Moseley, Robert Bateman (track 12).
Compilation producers: Bas Hartong, Bill Levenson.
Recorded at Dynamic Studios, Ultrasonic Studios, Bell Sound, Mirasound and A&R Studios, New York, New York. Includes liner notes by Don Charles.
Liner Note Author: Don Charles.
Recording information: A&R Studios, New York, NY; Bell Sound; Dynamic Studios, Genoa, Italy; Mirasound; UltraSonic Studios.
Unknown Contributor Roles: Mary Weiss; Elizabeth Weiss.
Arrangers: Robert Bateman; Artie Butler.
With over two-dozen tracks, this is among the most thorough single-disc compilations to feature the Shangri-Las. Under the direction of producer Shadow Morton and armed with the songwriting talent of the Brill Building, NYC-based sisters Mary Weiss, Betty Weiss, and their high school classmates Marge Ganser and Mary Anne Ganser -- who happened to also be twins -- would make rock & roll history as one of the '60s seminal girl groups. The young ladies' association with Morton actually predated their professional career. Morton would occasionally use them on demos that the song's author(s) would hock around to various artists and labels. One such imprint was Jerry Leiber's Red-Bird Records, who would issue the Shangri-Las' six Top 40 hits: "Remember (Walkin' in the Sand)," "Leader of the Pack," "Give Him a Great Big Kiss," "Give Us Your Blessing," "I Can Never Go Home Anymore," and "Long Live Our Love." Of course all those can be found here, as can many of the equally angst and drama-filled cuts that didn't make the upper reaches of the singles chart. "What Is Love" -- from the "Leader of the Pack" 45 rpm, "Heaven Only Knows" which was the flip of "Give Us Your Blessing," as well as "Sophisticated Boom Boom," which backed "Long Live Our Love" are but a few of the earliest inclusions. By the mid-'60s, the ladies were still able to garner attention with "Right Now Not Later," "He Cried," and "Past, Present & Future" while still on Red-Bird. But what separates this package from other best-of compiles are the Mercury era selections "Past, Present & Future," "The Sweet Sounds of Summer" -- which made it into the Top 100 -- and the lesser-known "Take the Time." These harder-to-find songs are represented along with their respective B-sides, giving more credence to The Best of the Shangri-Las  over some of the lesser-endowed anthologies. ~ Lindsay Planer
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