The Seekers

Studio and Concert Rarities

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As part of a five-volume series presenting most of the Seekers' recordings, these 23 live and studio recordings from the 1960s are really only of interest to the completist. Their marginal nature (and, sometimes, marginal sound quality) make them the least musically essential volume in the series. Yet for collectors who already have most or all of the more commonly circulated stuff on the other four CDs, they will by virtue of their very rarity be potentially the most desirable acquisition of the five. Kicking off the set -- in disappointingly thin fidelity -- are a half-dozen songs from their 1965 homecoming concert in Melbourne (interrupted by a gold record presentation), including spirituals, folk songs, and a couple of Bob Dylan covers (but, strangely, no "I'll Never Find Another You"). Some 1962 radio jingles and a half-dozen sea shanties (complete with accordion) from a 1963 radio broadcast follow, which are hardly typical of their output -- in fact, the sea shanties were never part of the group's permanent live set -- but, again, something for collectors to value for their very oddity. (Note that the version of "South Australia" from that broadcast has different lyrics than the one the group later released.) The lushly orchestrated "This Is My Song" is a 1967 outtake from their Seen in Green album, while four 1968 live recordings -- again in kind of crappy fidelity -- offer further oddities in a cover of Rick Nelson's "Hello Mary Lou," a "Maple Leaf Rag" with Judith Durham on piano, and "The Olive Tree," which had been a Durham solo single. Bringing this motley if well-packaged group of odds and ends to a close are the two versions of "Georgy Girl" from the soundtrack to the film of the same name, both of which are different from the recording used on the famous hit single. Studio and Concert Rarities was included as one of the discs in Australian EMI's Complete Seekers box set, which contains all five volumes of the series.

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