Paul Jones

The Paul Jones Collection Vol. 2: Love Me, Love My Friends

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An expanded version of Jones' 1967 album Love Me, Love My Friends, with ten bonus tracks. That 1967 LP was supposed to be a concept album of sorts, though not a very adventurous one, the idea being to base it around songs with names in the titles -- "Poor Jenny," "Charlie Brown," "Bony Moronie," etc. The results are as hackneyed as you'd expect, Jones compromising his strengths -- his excellent R&B and soul sensibilities, as demonstrated in Manfred Mann -- for weak material, anchored by Mike Leander's period-piece British orchestral-pop arrangements. Jones is at his best when he gets even a bit rootsy, as on "Nosher Burns" and "Little Sadie," though the juxtaposition of lame remakes of the Coasters and the Everly Brothers next to a folk-rock reading of Bob Dylan's "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll" is somewhat ludicrous. The bonus cuts, aside from the "Sons & Lovers"/"Three Sisters" single, were all previously unissued. None are especially interesting, although it's a shock to hear him covering the Electric Prunes on "Sold to the Highest Bidder."

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