Gary Lewis & The Playboys: The Complete Liberty Singles
Gary Lewis & The Playboys
Label: Real Gone Music
Released: August 28, 2012
Reviewed: October 7, 2012
The definitive Gary Lewis & the Playboys two-CD, 45-track The Complete Liberty Singles anthology came and went in a heartbeat a few years ago; the critical and commercial response was so good (and continues to be — used copies sell for megabucks online) that Real Gone Music decided to reissue it. It’s still the ideal way to explore the recordings of one of the great singles bands of the ’60s, featuring the A- and B-side of every single they issued on the Liberty label.
Many of these original mono singles mixes and most of the B-sides were completely unavailable until this collection came along — these after all are the mixes fans heard cracklin’ from their radio back in the day. The annotation by Ed Osborne features interviews with producers Bones Howe and Snuff Garrett, drummers Hal Blaine and Jim Keltner, singer (and Gary’s “ghost” voice) Ron Hicklin and even Lewis himself.