By 1990, when Colin Brown compiled this unlicensed Bing Crosby collection for the British reissue label ASV/Living Era, all recordings made prior to 1940 were in the public domain in Europe, where a 50-year copyright limit exists. Thus, Brown could make transfers from old 78s originally issued by Brunswick and Decca Records and assemble an album like this in whatever way he chose. More likely, the selections were made on the haphazard basis of whatever he was able to obtain from collectors and that ASV/Living Era hadn't already put out on such previous albums as Here Lies Love. How else can one explain the inclusions and their sequencing? The first eight tracks all come from 1931-1933, and in some cases they represent either side of a particular single, such as "I Found a Million Dollar Baby" and "I'm Through with Love" (Brunswick 6140) and the standards "Stardust" and "Dancing in the Dark" (Brunswick 6159). As of the ninth track, "My Heart Is Taking Lessons," the time period abruptly jumps to the 1937-1939 period for a batch of Decca recordings, most of which are also songs Crosby sang in such late-'30s films as Paris Honeymoon and East Side of Heaven. Among the 20 tracks there are some memorable songs, some Crosby hits, and some interesting, obscure performances (e.g., the rarely heard "Thine Alone"). But as a collection, the album is random and incoherent.
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann