Runaround Sue: The Best of the Rest

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It doesn't need to be said that a compilation of little-known Dion tracks from the early 1960s, half of them outtakes and alternates that didn't see first release until the 1980s, is for fans only. If you are a fan, and accept that his lesser-known tracks from the period were (as they were for virtually every rock artist of the time) not nearly up to the standard of his hit singles, this is still a worthwhile collection. The alternate versions here are often so slightly different from the familiar ones as not to be worthy of much attention, though it's interesting to hear "Runaround Sue" taken at a much faster tempo, and (less so) to hear "Little Diane" without the strange kazoo featured on the ultimate hit rendition. As for the 1960-63 tracks here that were actually released during those years, aficionados might want to note that these are all in stereo. They're not such great songs, however, though he certainly gives his vocal all, even when the teen idol sculpted material doesn't merit it. You do get the chance to hear Dion tackle a number of covers that you wouldn't necessarily associate him with, from straight adult pop oldies like "Moon River" and the Gordon Jenkins-John Mercer composition "P.S. I Love You" to Roy Orbison's "Crying" and Jimmy Reed's "Baby What You Want Me to Do." Of the little-known numbers here, perhaps the most interesting is the bluesy Otis Blackwell song "North East End of the Corner." [This U.K. import is not available for sale in North America.]

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:41
2 2:22
3 2:58
4 2:23
5 2:20
6 3:01
7 2:44
8 3:24
9 2:37
10 3:56
11 2:00
12 2:37
13 2:56
14 2:54
15 2:54
16 2:55
17 2:44
18 2:36
19 2:40
20 2:03
21 2:58
22 2:03
23 2:25
24 2:39
blue highlight denotes track pick