The Pomus & Shuman Story Double Trouble 1956-1967 CD, Compilation, Import
To complement our soon-to-conclude Leiber & Stoller series, Ace UK now presents its first salute to the 'other' great song-writing team of Rock 'n' Roll's Golden Age.
Individually and collectively, Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman have written more classics of American Pop than almost any other writers of their era. They had more songs accepted and recorded by Elvis Presley than even Leiber & Stoller did (apparently, without ever meeting the King even once).
This package offers a strong mix of the obvious classics we couldn't leave out, and songs that should have been as big as those that did become major hits. It also includes songs that will surprise people who think that P & S only wrote teen pop, tackled by artists including Irma Thomas, Howard Tate, Ray Charles and the McCoys. Many of these tracks are making their CD debut here.
We are also privileged to include, for the first time on an Ace CD, an Elvis Presley recording as our title track - one which, incidentally, was the last song that Pomus & Shuman ever wrote together before dissolving their song-writing partnership in 1966.
Released with the blessing of the Estates of both Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman, "Double Trouble" is the sort of tribute that writers of their calibre deserve. Don't bet against there being a volume two sometime in the near future.
There are a couple of cases where it would have been nice to hear a mono version instead of the overly familiar stereo (A Teenager In Love for example).
The Del Shannon version of His Latest Flame is a particularly disappointing stereo, and the volume on the track is way too low in relation to other tracks on the compilation. The stereo has nothing happening on one channel for nearly half the record :(.
There seems to be an actual defect on the Fabian track, at about the 1 minute mark.
But these are trivial concerns, compared to having a nice companion to the Leiber and Stoller series.
deserve them, this release is a bit frustrating not only because of
the selection used, but also because some of the greatest tunes of all
times are again in MONO. I know that there are a lot of "purists" who
prefer mono recordings but if an original stereo version does exist,
I prefer that because a lot of "unexisting" instruments on a mono
recording can be heard on the stereo one. There's a lot of difference
when you hear "Save The Last Dance For Me" in stereo. The mono version
loses a lot. Ben E King's "First Taste of Love" is one of the greatest
songs ever if you can hear it in stereo. On this CD it's in mono and
it loses half of the instrumental back-up orchestra. Some other songs
however, like Hushabye, are wonderfully presented so at least it
still can be classified as a 4 star CD.