Jerry Lee Lewis

Platinum & Gold Collection

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The only bad thing that can be said about BMG Heritage's 2004 compilation Platinum & Gold Collection is that it may be a little bit too predictable, sticking to the most familiar of Jerry Lee Lewis' seminal singles for Sun during the '50s, including the timeless hits "Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On," "Great Balls of Fire," "Breathless," "You Win Again," "Crazy Arms," "High School Confidential," and "It'll Be Me." Then again, any Sun collection that doesn't contain those singles could not hope to be a good sampler or introduction, which the 12-track budget-line collection Platinum & Gold is. By pairing those hits with such excellent non-hit Sun sides as "Big Legged Woman," "Real Wild Child (Wild One)," and "Lovin' Up a Storm," this not only satisfies the needs of a casual fan, but it gives an indication of the depth of Jerry Lee's work for the label and how consistently satisfying it is. Sure, there are other great tracks that could have been here, such as "Break-Up" or "Down the Line," but everything here is excellent. Sure, there are other compilations that are longer and more comprehensive -- Rhino's 1994 18 Original Sun Greatest Hits remains the best overview -- but as a budget-line compilation, this is first-rate and a good introduction to one of the giants of American music of the 20th century.

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