Millie Jackson

Totally Unrestricted: The Millie Jackson Anthology

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It would seem that a double-disc Millie Jackson anthology would be definitive, all that anyone would need from the notoriously raunchy soul singer. That's not necessarily the case with Totally Unrestricted: The Millie Jackson Anthology. Over the course of two discs, Totally Unrestricted compiles highlights from her recordings for Spring Records. Jackson was with the label from 1971 to 1983. During those years she had a number of Top 40 R&B hits -- including the Top Ten singles "Ask Me What You Want," "My Man a Sweet Man," "Hurts So Good" and "If You're Not Back in Love by Monday" -- and the majority of those tracks are featured on this extensive retrospective. By featuring the cream of her '70s and early-'80s recordings, Totally Unrestricted certainly offers a good portrait of the peak of her career, but that doesn't mean the collection is flawless. For one thing, it's too long for casual fans. Two discs and 36 tracks is a lot of material, and much of Jackson's music is simply too similar for the set to be consistently compelling. Furthermore, the double-disc length might have made sense if it also encompassed her rare '60s recordings and her infamous X-rated late-'80s records for Jive, since that would have conveyed the full scope of her career. Instead, the set draws a portrait -- one that some might call a little too detailed -- of a specific, albeit successful, portion of her career. By doing so, it is far away the best Millie Jackson collection on the market, but most casual fans will prefer to hear this material on a single disc.

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