Billy Vera & the Beaters

At This Moment: A Retrospective

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Considering that Billy Vera had written a ton of liner notes in the years preceding the release of At This Moment: A Retrospective (for which he penned the notes himself) and presumably cares about such things as dates and recording sources, the track listing and notes for this compilation are surprisingly vague about some such details. Certainly much of it comes from a 1995 live performance. And certainly a few of the remaining cuts come from the soundtracks to Blind Date, Rainbow Drive, Baja Oklahoma, Desperate for Love, and Ride the Wind ("Desperate Frame of Mind" was in fact used for both of the latter two movies). As for the version of "At This Moment," the number one hit that will certainly be the song to attract most interest on the collection, it's a studio version made for the picture Starstruck, though in the notes Vera seems to imply the CD includes a live recording of the tune (it doesn't). Whatever the discographical minutiae, these are journeyman blends of rock, pop, soul, R&B, and adult contemporary music (and even a bit of country at times, as on "Desperate Frame of Mind"), done by a man who obviously cares deeply about classic roots forms but is only an adequate singer. The Beaters are only serviceable as backers, sounding like a television house band with more funk than most.

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