Various Artists

1944: 20 Original Chart Hits

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Year-based compilations are nearly always enjoyable time capsules, and England's A Time to Remember label, with over 30 years of annual compilations, has trawled musical pop culture nearly as far into the past as the American Time-Life. 1944: 20 Original Chart Hits boasts a few more hits than other volumes in the series, including Judy Garland's "The Trolley Song," Anita O'Day's "And Her Tears Flowed Like Wine" (with support from the Stan Kenton Orchestra), and Johnny Mercer's "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive." The rest of the compilation is filled out by dance band acts -- Hutch, Geraldo, Joe Loss, Eric Winstone -- which may not ring a bell for listeners but function as a rare CD release for some obscure groups.

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