Various Artists

Blockbuster Summer Series: '60s Pop

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This ten-track compilation presents some rock hits that were in Billboard's Hot 100 between the spring of 1964 and the spring of 1969. The thing all ten have in common, of course, is that they are all owned by the major label EMI, although they were released originally on Ascot, Imperial, Liberty, and United Artists, as well as the EMI subsidiary Capitol. Six were Top Ten hits, and two of those, Manfred Mann's "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" and the Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations," hit number one. But the collection also reflects the movement toward less-pop-oriented album rock of the era, featuring songs such the Steve Miller Band's "Living in the U.S.A." and the Band's "The Weight," neither of which made the Top 40, but of which are nevertheless remembered as major- '60s rock songs, and Canned Heat's "Going Up the Country," which missed the Top Ten in early 1969 but was a favorite of the Woodstock festival later that year, as heard in the film and on the soundtrack album. (The original studio recording is included here.) The heavier, hippie-era recordings are contrasted by such lighter fare as the British Invasion rockers "Gimme Some Lovin'," dance rockers like "Nobody but Me," and the TV theme "Hawaii Five-O." The material is much anthologized, but it sounds as good here as it does anywhere else.