Various Artists

Girls! Girls! Girls! 25 All-Time Classics of the Girl Group Sound

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Girls! Girls! Girls! 25 All-Time Classics of the Girl Group Sound is a well-chosen selection; along with the huge girl group hits on offer here (like the Shirelles' "Mama Said," the Jaynetts' "Sally, Go 'Round the Roses," the Chiffons' "He's So Fine," and the Murmaids' "Popsicles and Icicles"), the producers of the disc cast their net over a wide range of singers and groups and made some interesting song choices. By focusing on the girl group sound rather than the usual girl groups themselves, they are able to include middle-of-the-road girl singers like Linda Scott ("I've Told Every Little Star"), Marcie Blaine (the charming "Bobby's Girl"), and Kathy Young (the tremulous "A Thousand Stars"), soul singers like Barbara Lewis ("Hello Stranger"), Barbara George ("I Know [You Don't Love Me No More]"), and Barbara Mason ("Yes I'm Ready"), and some groups whose obscurity is completely unjustified, like Candy & the Kisses, whose soulful dance groover "The 81" should have been a huge smash, the Sapphires, whose "Who Do You Love" is a melancholy gem equal to the best of the Shirelles, and the Jelly Beans, who contribute one of the disc's best tracks with the heartfelt and sassy "I Wanna Love Him So Bad." There are also some big-name purveyors of the girl group sound here, but they aren't represented by their trademark hits; in a rare show of imagination, the producers decided to choose songs that are just as good as the classics but haven't suffered the tragic fate of being played to death on good-time oldies radio. So instead of "Leader of the Pack" by the Shangri-Las, listeners get the transcendent "Give Him a Great Big Kiss." Instead of the tired "Iko Iko" by the Dixie Cups, listeners get the laid-back and dreamy "People Say." Instead of the obvious "My Boyfriend's Back" by the Angels, listeners get their weepy ballad "'Til." There are a couple of stinkers (Felice Taylor's pale Diana Ross imitation on "It May Be Winter Outside [But in My Heart It's Spring]" and Brenda & the Tabulations' "Right on the Tip of My Tongue," which not only falls outside of the girl group sound as it was recorded in 1971 and sounds it, but is also pretty tuneless vocally), but not enough to be problematic or keep this from being one of the more interesting mainstream girl group collections. The blend of the familiar and the farther afield make Girls! Girls! Girls! a joy to listen to for fans of girl groups and any fan of 60's pop music.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:25
2 2:16
3 2:07
4 2:28
5 2:23
6 2:35
7 3:06
8 2:52
9 2:56
10 2:25
11 2:43
12 2:07
13 2:51
14 2:25
15 2:25
16 3:06
17 2:33
18 2:05
19 2:05
20 2:25
21 2:38
22 3:14
23 2:37
24 3:20
25 2:13
blue highlight denotes track pick