Various Artists

Super Oldies of the 50's, Vol. 7

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As "oldies'" radio stations have progressively played newer music, few bother to reach back to the first decade of rock & roll in the '50s. Serial compilations like Super Oldies of the 50s, then, provide fans with a good starting place to return to doo wop and rock & roll's beginning and create their own version of oldies" radio. Super Oldies of the 50s, Vol. 7, like most of the volumes in the series, includes several very well known songs juxtaposed with lesser-known fare. Even casual fans of the era will be familiar with Bill Haley & His Comets' "See You Later Alligator," the Clovers' "Love Potion Number 9," the Coasters' "Charlie Brown," and Frankie Avalon's "Venus." There are also fun songs like "Mr. Blue" and "Tequila" that are probably better known than the bands that performed them (the Fleetwoods and the Champs, respectively). And finally, there are those happy oddities that may not qualify as classic but are nonetheless intriguing as byproducts of an era, songs like "Tiger" by Fabian and instrumentals like "Happy Organ" by Dave "Baby" Cortez. While Super Oldies of the 50s, Vol. 7 is quite enjoyable as a collection, the series lacks liner notes and the sound quality of the Super Oldies is less than pristine. Volume 7 will nonetheless allow the listener to re-create a nearly hour-long version of oldies radio, '50s style.

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