Donnie Elbert

The Greatest Hits of Donnie Elbert

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There's really only one hit by Donnie Elbert on this Collectables set, his glorious, caressing 1957 ballad "What Can I Do." Since this Greatest Hits of Donnie Elbert only includes his work from the '50s and '60s, none of his All Platinum hits are represented. Instead, it's his complete work for DeLuxe during 1957-58, both sides of eight singles, plus three early-'60s sides for Vee-Jay and four for Gateway from the mid-'60s. The arrangements are strictly period pop-soul, with modestly squawking saxes and a few swinging vocal choruses. The songs aren't much better, but Elbert shines in almost any setting; "Tell Me So" is a great follow-up to his hit that didn't make the charts, while his Vee-Jay A-sides "Will You Ever Be Mine" and "Half as Old" are great performances as well. Despite the presence of so many hits on the other volume, this one gets the nod since it's only a single disc and Elbert's crystal falsetto sounds better backed by music with a hint of doo-wop than the slightly mushy arrangements on his '70s material.

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