P.J. Proby

The Best of P.J. Proby: The EMI Years (1961-1972)

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A native Texan, P.J. Proby had to relocate to England to find musical success, and he did it just as the British Invasion era was starting, finding the charts with energetic and soulful songs like "Hold Me." Proby was hardly a jingle-jangle mop top, though, and he had a strong theatrical side to his singing style, and he soon was sounding more like Tom Jones than any of the Beatles. Unfortunately, Proby's odd, dramatic singing style was at best an acquired taste, and at his worst, he sounded overblown and bombastic, if not downright bad. This generous single-disc collection draws key tracks from Proby's EMI years (1961 to 1972), and features "Hold Me" and his biggest American hit, "Niki Hoeky," which charted in 1967, among many others, including his British singles, some B-sides, key album tracks, and a couple of previously unreleased sides. The end result is an interesting period portrait of an unusual and quirky pop singer.

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