Ok, how many recordings of I Think I Love You can one person have? For a band that only put out seven mainstream albums (minus the Christmas album), having FIVE so-called "greatest hits" compilations seems a bit excessive. But who am I to argue? After all, I bought them all. And I bet most of you did, too.
|AT HOME (Bell 1107; 1972)
is the first hits package released and includes tunes from the first four albums, plus Neil Sedaka's Breaking Up Is Hard To Do -- popped up and harmonized in ways that put Neil's original to shame.
One side 1, you'll find I Think I Love You, I'll Meet You Halfway, It's One Of Those Nights (Yes, Love), Echo Valley 2-6809, I Woke Up In Love This Morning, and I Can Feel Your Heartbeat. Side 2 offers us Doesn't Somebody Want To Be Wanted, Am I Losing You?, Brown Eyes, She'd Rather Have The Rain, and the aforementioned Breaking Up Is Hard To Do.
Now, I don't know what constitutes a "greatest hit". Is it record sales? Radio play? Somebody at Bell really, really, REALLY liked the song? I have to question, however, the inclusion of some of these tunes. While they are all nice songs, I'd hardly say that Brown Eyes or Echo Valley 2-6809 were the finest the PF had to offer. Why not Point Me in the Direction of Albuquerque or Summer Days (each definately much more popular - at least with fans - than the other two)?
|THE WORLD OF THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY (Bell 1319; 1974) was once considered an oddity to me. I remember finding it a bargain record bin at the local department store back in the late 70s, never knowing of its existence. When I discovered the PF message board on AOL, few people had heard of this gem, either (oh, how young and foolish we were!). Plus, there's no mention of it in Joey Green's book, "The Partridge Family Album". And yet, there it was in my hot little hands in all it's double-album glory!
In later years, of course, WORLD OF... became less mysterious and copies of it abound if you know where to look. Released by Bell in 1974 (after Bulletin Board), it contains the following cuts:
Side 1: I Think I Love You, Point Me in the Direction of Albuquerque, She'd Rather Have The Rain, I Really Want to Know You, It's One of Those Nights (Yes, Love).
Pretty much looks like they just took AT HOME and added another disc to it to include the last 3 albums, huh? Well, think again!
A quick look shows us that, out of these 20 songs, there are 5 songs from FAMILY ALBUM, 3 from UP TO DATE, 3 from SOUND MAGAZINE, 3 from SHOPPING BAG, 1 from AT HOME, 3 from NOTEBOOK, 2 from BULLETIN BOARD...and absolutely nothing from CROSSWORD PUZZLE! I have to wonder how one (read: Bell) justified including a song such as I Really Want to Know You (which doesn't even include lead vocals by David Cassidy) and nothing from an album that contains such great songs as As Long As There's You, Sunshine, or It Means I'm In Love With You?
|LUNCHBOX (Arista ARCD-8604; 1989), released in 1989, brought the PF to the high-tech age of the CD...and, while generally a good collection, is basically not what it seems. There are 16 cuts on this little beauty, but one of them is Come On Get Happy (a nice TV theme song, but hardly a "greatest hit") and two (Cherish, Could it Be Forever) are solo David Cassidy tunes! I felt cheated. So, we are left with: I Think I Love You, Doesn't Somebody Want to be Wanted, I'll Meet You Halfway, I Woke Up In Love This Morning, It's One of Those Nights, I Can Feel Your Heartbeat, Am I Losing You, Point Me in the Direction of Albuquerque, Echo Valley 2-6809, Summer Days, Looking Through the Eyes of Love, How Long is Too Long, and One Night Stand (nope, no Neil Sedaka or Brown Eyes this time... and still nothing from CROSSWORD PUZZLE - someone really hates that album!).|
|DAVID CASSIDY'S PARTRIDGE FAMILY FAVORITES (Slamajama 812-2; 1998) is a compilation CD put out by David Cassidy's record label, Slamajama (David Cassidy, executive producer). The supposed highlights of this collection were that a) the tracks were hand-picked by David as being (as the title notes) his favorite PF tunes and b) it contained some Partridge Family tracks that were never previously released. While the second point is certainly true, I have to wonder just how much input David had in selecting the CD's tracks: I Think I Love You (you're surprised, I know!), Point Me in the Direction of Albuquerque, Doesn't Somebody Want to be Wanted (the age-old story that David hated making this record because of the spoken section makes me question his overall involvement), I'll Meet You Halfway, I Woke Up in Love This Morning, It's One of Those Nights (Yes, Love), Am I Losing You, and Looking Through The Eyes of Love. Guess David wasn't a big fan of CROSSWORD PUZZLE either... or BULLETIN BOARD...or that darn Sedaka tune!
Of the four previously-unreleased tracks, only one, It's Time I Knew You Better, actually even made it on the show (Episode 39 - you know, the one with Meredith Baxter as the hippie chick).This would have put it around the Sound Magazine/Shopping Bag era. The other three are: Warm My Soul (1972), Sweetness (1971), and Mystical Lady (1971). Warm My Soul appears in a different version on the DC solo album ROCK ME BABY and was first recorded as a PF tune to be included on UP TO DATE, but was ultimately rejected as being a bit too suggestive. To the best of my knowledge, Sweetness and Mystic Lady were never used at all.
Listening to the new tracks takes some getting used to, but it's definitely a must-have for all PF fans and completists. I would have chosen different tracks (such as Listen to the Sound and I'm Into Something Good), but then again, it isn't called MICKEY'S PARTRIDGE FAMILY FAVORITES, is it? :-)
|DAVID CASSIDY AND THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY: THE DEFINITIVE COLLECTION (Arista; 2000). Released by Arista records (formerly Bell, the PF's original company), and claiming to be "the first definitive collection" (huh? what were the other collections?), this CD combines both Partridge hits with those from David Cassidy's solo career.
The tracklist for this CD is: I Think I Love You, Doesn't Somebody Want To Be Wanted, I'll Meet You Halfway, I Woke Up In Love This Morning, Cherish, It's One Of Those Nights (Yes Love), Could It Be Forever, Am I Losing You, How Can I Be Sure, Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, Rock Me Baby, Looking Through The Eyes Of Love, I Am A Clown, Friend And A Lover, Walking In The Rain, If I Didn't Care, Daydreamer, Please Please Me, Some Kind Of Summer, Point Me in the Direction of Albuquerque.
|THE VERY BEST OF THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY: COME ON GET HAPPY (Arista/SONY/BMG; 2005) is the latest entry in the PF catalogue. To be released May 2005. (review forthcoming)|
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