Kenny Rogers / Kenny Rogers & the First Edition

Something's Burning

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This 16-track collection contains tunes recorded by Kenny Rogers when he fronted the folk-rock unit the First Edition in the 1960s at the very beginning of his career. That said, every cut here is a gem, from "Ruby Don't Take Your Love to Town" to "Reuben James" to the closer, "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)." The sound is fine and so are Kurt Wolff's liner notes. But there are other compilations that do a far better job of documenting this period -- they may not have the fine liners, but they are cheapo and have a hell of a lot more tunes. (Direct Source's Legends: Kenny Rogers & the First Edition and The Legends Collection, the latter of which contains two discs for the price of one, are examples.) This is fine for what it is, but it's hard to picture someone choosing this over the others.

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