13.Tired of Trying, Bored with Lying, Scared of Dying
14.My Little Red Book
16.If You Gotta Go, Go Now
17.There's No Living Without Your Loving
18.With God on Our Side
19.Hi Lili, Hi Lo
21.Just Like a Woman
22.Semi-Detached, Suburban Mr. James
23.Ha! Ha! Said the Clown
24.Mighty Quinn, The (Quinn the Eskimo)
25.My Name Is Jack
26.Fox in the Run
28.Up the Junction
Liner Note Author: Ian McFarlane.
Arrangers: Manfred Mann ; Mike Hugg.
Manfred Mann's story isn't necessarily a complicated one -- the band went through two distinct phases, neatly separated by a switch in lead singers that happened to coincide with a switch in labels -- but their discography sure is complicated. It's cluttered with compilations, almost all of them recycling the EMI recordings from 1963-1966 when Paul Jones was the lead singer and the group was an expert, jazzy British R&B band. There are far fewer comps documenting their Fontana recordings from 1963-1969, when Mike d'Abo was fronting the band as it was getting psychedelic, and there were absolutely no compilations that contained both eras on one disc until Raven's 2008 release Hit Mann! The Essential Singles 1963-1969. A distillation of their double-disc 2000 release All Manner of Menn: 1963-1969, the multi-label approach works even better on the single-disc scale, as it not only provides a useful purpose by gathering all the hits from "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" to "The Mighty Quinn" on one platter, but it also provides a succinct overview of the band's history. As a group with one big hit on oldies radio and then a lot of music that doesn't fit those confines quite so easily, Manfred Mann are perennially overlooked, but Hit Mann! goes a long way toward offering a riposte to that assumption, as it runs through the muscular blues, swinging mod jazz, hip Dylan covers, and colorful psych pop that form their legacy -- a legacy that's easier than ever to appreciate via this long overdue superb disc. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine