The Very Best of Yanni

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A handful of his millions of fans worldwide are bound to not have every big Yanni hit in their collection, and so this collection -- perhaps the final Private Music greatest-hits collection, because there have been various others -- certainly serves a functional purpose. Because of the seemingly simple compositional nature of his tunes and his intense showmanship, the Greek-born keyboardist has inspired his share of detractors, too. But these songs, from the classically inspired "Aria" (first heard on a series of British Airways commercials) to the exotic, Middle Eastern-flavored "Looking Glass" and lush, percussive "Swept Away" proves that if he's not the world's greatest technician, he can definitely write a strong melody. And that's what pop music is all about, so lighten up. The solo piano number "One Man's Dream" is now a precious new age classic, as is "In the Mirror." These tracks make the most emotional impact, even though most of the songs here that made him most popular are a bit more of the synth-created variety. If you are a big Yanni fan, check the track listing; chances are, you have all these songs somewhere else. Still, The Very Best of Yanni is a good primer on the man and his music.

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