• Two exciting new Carpenters releases are now available. The new book Carpenters: The Musical Legacy can be ordered here. A big thanks to the authors and Richard Carpenter for their tremendous effort in compiling this book! Also, the new solo piano album Richard Carpenter's Piano Songbook is available for ordering here.

20th Century Masters track list

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JAZZ4JEFF

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They have announced the track listing for the 20th Century masters collection due out on Sept. 24th. The cover art is the same as the A&M 25th anniversary collection. Here is the track listing.


1. Yesterday Once More 7. I Believe You
2. I Need To Be In Love 8. Top Of The World
3. Please Mr. Postman 9. Love Is Surrender
4. Bless The Beasts And Children 10. Maybe It's You
5. This Masquerade 11. Only Yesterday
6. I Just Fall In Love Again 12. Goodbye To Love

Wow, no "Close to you", no "We've only just begun"? How can you have a definitive collection without their two signiture tunes?.

Jeff Gehringer
 

scottb

Well-Known Member
Nice to have "Love Is Surrender" on this CD. It will be interesting to see if they used the remix.

Scott B
 

LPJim

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With Carpenters and other A&M acts, my preference is owning the original studio album on vinyl, and its CD counterpart (with bonus trax). These compilations are unnecessary for me, especially this look-alike 20th Century series and it's skimpy 10 or 11-track 'offerings.'
It's a shame the labels would rather churn the catalogs of a small number of well known artists than branch out and reissue the long out-of-print work of equally deserving acts.
Financially, it's safer to stick with the dependable cash cows than take a risk on creativity.
JB
 

Mike Blakesley

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Jazz4jeff: They do not claim this is a definitive collection. (Carpenters have never released what I would call a definitive collection! There are ALWAYS great things missing from every one of their compilations, with exceptions being the SINGLES sets, which really are what they claim to be.)

On the other hand, I think it's kind of nice that they are showcasing a few lesser-known tracks. After all, everybody has already heard "Close" and "Begun." They might pick up some sales from people who had previously bought "The Singles."

I agree the "Millenium Collection" series is kind of boring, but 12 tracks is really fairly generous considering the price of the series ($11.98 list, probably available for 9 bucks or less in stores). And you get a tri-fold booklet with most of these albums, with liner notes and sometimes-rare photos. That's more than most budget priced "hits" collections offer.
 

CraigGA

Well-Known Member
This is a pitiful collection, and if the other artists profiled have similar offerings, this concept is a wasted one, surely to hit the discount volume shelf of $4.99 in just a few months time. I cannot believe it is even in discussion.

Craig
 

Harry

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Mike Blakesley said:
They do not claim this is a definitive collection. (Carpenters have never released what I would call a definitive collection! There are ALWAYS great things missing from every one of their compilations, with exceptions being the SINGLES sets, which really are what they claim to be.)

I'd say that the YESTERDAY ONCE MORE collection is pretty definitive, and it's gotten multiple releases under different titles/track listings. For a one-disc compilation, the imports THEIR GREATEST HITS or TWENTY-TWO HITS seem to be pretty definitive.

Mike Blakesley said:
On the other hand, I think it's kind of nice that they are showcasing a few lesser-known tracks. After all, everybody has already heard "Close" and "Begun." They might pick up some sales from people who had previously bought "The Singles."

Agreed. There are only three song overlaps between this new disc and the old SINGLES set.

Mike Blakesley said:
I agree the "Millenium Collection" series is kind of boring, but 12 tracks is really fairly generous considering the price of the series ($11.98 list, probably available for 9 bucks or less in stores). And you get a tri-fold booklet with most of these albums, with liner notes and sometimes-rare photos. That's more than most budget priced "hits" collections offer.

Agreed again. They seem to sell well, and are constantly an "on sale" item going for the $9.99 price. With all of the other Carps discs available, I have no problem with a discount title available for the "on-the-fence" buyers. I object when ONLY a compilation is available like with Mr. Alpert. Should the Alpert catalog ever get completely re-issued, I'd have no problem with a TJB entry in ther 20th Century series.

Harry
...wondering if a Mendes entry is planned, online...
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
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Universal's generic "collections" usually come across as cheap knock-offs to get a few bucks out of the back catalog, usually consisting of 10 or 12 tracks chosen without any rhyme or reason. Target locally sells these for $8.98, and to be honest, I've never felt compelled enough to pick one up off of the store shelf to look at it.

Suprises me even more that Richard would have allowed such a set to be released. As much control as he had over previous compilations, it makes me wonder if the gap between Univer$al and Richard is widening with each passing month...

-= N =-
 

Mike Blakesley

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I guess I was thinking along the lines of what RCA used to do....they would release a "very best of" on one of those paper thin LPs, in a singlefold sleeve with no liner sleeve, and only 8 songs on the album with a running time of 20 minutes or so, and the list price on it would be $4.98, which is about 3/4 of what the list price for mainstream releases was at that time. In comparison, with this Millenium series, at least you get a "complete" CD pacakge, even if it is a bit brief.

This is probably the lowest priced Carps collection available at this point, isn't it? Maybe Richard had to agree to this release in order to get all the original albums remastered and released last year?
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
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Mike Blakesley said:
I guess I was thinking along the lines of what RCA used to do....they would release a "very best of" on one of those paper thin LPs,

Aaaaaaah! The evil "dynaflex" LP returns!! (As if the "DynagrooVe" recordings weren't enough!) You could, literally, bend this LP into a "U" shape and it would rebound. If I had to guess, Fantasy may have used RCA to press a few of their LPs. I have two copies of the Cal Tjader LP, Tjader, which actually sag in the middle when you hold it by the edges!!

-= N =-
...who thinks RCA's "floppy discs" predated the computer "floppy disks" by a number of years....
 

PJ

Member
Given that this release is part of a Universal Mid Price Catalogue , Carpenters set was overdue to arrive.

The thinking behind this release is not to appeal to longterm Fans or buyers of Carpenters Studio Albums , rather to casual Music buyers and first timers who are seeking a cheaper release.This makes sense for all Artists to have Full Price , Mid-Price and Budget sets available to appeal to various buyers :cool:

I am surprised by some omissions , CTY & WOJB etc , Richard as compiler probably wanted to include some Album favourites.There are six Carpenter-Bettis songs to keep the publishing royalties flowing ...... :)

Overall this is an interesting selection of tracks , all from the 1970's Albums ! and should do well both in USA and internationally , other 20th Century Albums have been steady sellers in Japan and UK / Europe.

Perhaps Richard seeing the huge sales for Carpenters and Reflections Budget release in UK / Europe agreed to Universal's request for USA set.With some Fall promotion this is a potentially steady seller to new / young buyers.Shame Universal just dumped Singles 1969-1981 on the market and never supported that set :sad:

The only real surprise is that Richard agreed to an Autumn release alongside the revised 4 CD Box set and this led to Universal postponing RC Christmas Solo Album !
There are rumours that Richard decided to delay this Solo release due to the continuring poor relationship with Universal and the uncertainity with Universal Music Group , whether there will be a de-merger from Vivendi Universal or another sale ? :confused:

Perhaps these releases will be the last under Universal USA and 2003 will bring the surprise and hope of Carpenters & Solo Contracts with a new Music Company and the promise of further new material / Carpenters rarities :D :D
 

Harry

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As an old-time A&M'er, I think I might have reservations should Richard and 'Carpenters' ever land on another label. There's something comforting in seeing the A&M logo on their albums -- a sense of continuity. I don't particularly feel deprived in terms of Carpenters output, and I don't know that 'jumping ship' to another label would entice me to buy any further Carpenters product, particularly more compilations. Certainly if a motherload of 'new' songs from Karen were discovered and worked into full arrangements by Richard, I'd be more than happy to shell out the bucks to whatever label it was on. But if he signs on with another label just to churn out more of the same-old same-old, I'd likely skip them. Initially, I didn't bother with the Readers' Digest set or the Time-Life stuff, and only added them for the sake of completeness.

Harry
...ready to try to find the Millenium set tomorrow, online...
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
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Harry said:
But if he signs on with another label just to churn out more of the same-old same-old, I'd likely skip them. Initially, I didn't bother with the Readers' Digest set or the Time-Life stuff, and only added them for the sake of completeness.

The only unknown: how much is Universal holding back Richard from releasing what he wants to release? Good example is As Time Goes By, which probably had all of its demand satisfied by the import release.

-= N =-
 

Harry

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^^ Right. I've got mine -- it says "A&M" on it and I'm a happy camper.

Harry
...who wouldn't buy another copy on another label, online...
 

mr J.

Well-Known Member
HARRY, the carpenters will never "land" on another label! A & M owns the rights to all their A & M recordings,which is now owned by Universal.However,Karen and Richards original A&M contract gave them final approval over every album,and prohibited A&M from releasing anything without their permission.These original terms have continued all the way through today,allowing richard to supervise the coordination of every compilation and boxed set released.As far as unreleased material is concerned,while there is approximately 6 albums worth of material sitting in the A&M vaults,most of this material is unreleasable or not worthy of release.Most of these tracks are songs similar to "BEECHWOOD","HONOLULU CITY LIGHTS" etc.There is no "prime" material sitting in the vaults.(except the "Karen/Ella medley"-due to a contract dispute-and possibly "I got Rythym". There is also a good rendition of "the moon is a harsh mistress" from 1980-with a test vocal.)Most of the tracks on the import AS TIME GOES BY were not designed for a studio album(medleys,instrumentals,demos from 1967),and they certainly don't belong on the upcoming ESSENTIAL COLLECTION boxed set.(except,of course,the KAREN/ELLA MEDLEY).The main reason Richard included 4 cuts from karen's solo album on LOVELINES in 1989 was because there were no more good carpenters outtakes to fill out a whole album.(TRYING TO GET THE FEELING and FROM THIS MOMENT ON weren't found until 1991-and were promptly included on INTERPRETATIONS.)
 

Harry

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mr J. said:
HARRY, the carpenters will never "land" on another label!

I, for one, would hope that to be the case, purely for my own fascination with the label as well as Carpenters. PJ, however, seems to have other ideas in this regard, and I'm not sure of the source of that information.

As to your other statements, of course, I am quite aware of the status of the alleged unreleased tracks. I've always assumed that Richard has not been holding back on us and that there simply aren't anymore "worthy-of-release" songs from Karen sitting in the vaults.

I've heard the leaked, unreleased solo tracks - yes, some of those are fun to listen to, but I can understand Richard's (and Karen's!) desire that they not be released. It's not out of the realm of possiblility that those tracks might have been "leaked" intentionally, just so that we the fans could hear them, without Richard having to get "involved".

Looking over the tracklist for the new box set, I'm quite sure that this is the work of Richard, with his attempt at making something which already exists, better. And I'm pretty sure that it will be, better, that is.

Harry
...ready for a new, low-priced Carpenters disc (20th Century - Millennium), online...
 

Rudy

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mr J. said:
HARRY, the carpenters will never "land" on another label! A & M owns the rights to all their A & M recordings,which is now owned by Universal.

IMHO, this is a major crime. What's to stop Universal from one day declaring that no more Carpenters be released? In no case should ANY label ever own the masters for a recording artist!! But thanks to some legal maneuverings in the 60's and 70's, it had become the industry norm.

Through my work with other bands and artists, I know all too well how a record company, especially the evil, greedy Universal Music Group, treats the master tapes. Once the label feels an artist is no longer profitable, the tapes remain in the vaults, untouched. It's a one-way street. If the artist wants something reissued or a compilation made, forget it...it doesn't happen. If the label wants a release, then it happens. Whoever thought it wise, originally, for artists to sign their rights away, obviously did not forsee what would happen in the future, nor did they have the artists' best interests at heart. The labels dangle the carrot of fame and fortune in front of the artist when they sign that nice big contract, and gloss over the little tiny fact that they can never possess the masters of their own music.

Here's one glaring example. Universal, in the jazz industry, is well known for their destruction of GRP Records. (And they're now doing the same to Verve, slowly but surely--Verve By Request was the best reissue project they had going, and UMG mothballed it.) In GRP's case, Grusin and Rosen sold out, and UMG took over. For years, GRP had a steady, available catalog with a lot of artists who, seemingly, stayed there forever. Once UMG came along, they did some housecleaning. I'm estimating anywhere from 80-90% of the catalog was thrown into cut-out bins or destroyed (and I went on a buying binge, picking up a couple dozen CDs for $2.50 each); the majority of the artists were unceremoniously dumped from the label (or not offered a renewal), the same artists whose sound built GRP into the unique label that it was: Rippingtons, Eddie Daniels, Lee Ritenour...we're not talking minor league jazz artists here! Their only strategy now is to keep the tapes in the vault and release ill-conceived compilations every two or three years. The artists can't even touch the tapes, even if they wanted to buy them and put them out on a different label...UMG won't even sell them!!

Letting a label control an artist's masters is suicide. One day when UMG gets fed up with Carpenters and "units" don't sell anymore, that'll be it. It's sad that Richard will forever be enslaved to the evil Universal Music Group. Their reluctance to overcome licensing issues for As Time Goes By is, IMHO, the writing on the wall. You'll notice that UMG unconditionally will reissue a compilation...but let's see what happens when Richard wants to reissue yet another batch of original album releases. I know too many artists and bands who have been stung by UMG to be anything but extremely bitter and pessimistic toward this label. (But not as bitter as these same artists, many of whom are now starting their own independent labels or signing deals with small labels in order to gain freedom.) The fact that UMG, a non-U.S. owned company, is also behind the RIAA's crusade against consumers and recording artists, does not sit well with me.

I just feel bad that Carpenters originally signed for one of the best independent labels ever, and they're now stuck in a no-win situation. You can bet the UMG attorneys scoured that Carpenters contract with a fine-toothed comb, finding any loophole they could for future reference...

If Richard could ever break free from that enslavement with all the masters in his possession, more power to him! I would rather have seen A&M just disappear, rather than see how it has been perverted and twisted at the hands of UMG. :mad: To them, it's nothing but an ink imprint and an office run with generic bottom-line-oriented managers. Carpenters are lucky--they are still active sellers. But to think of all of the other earlier A&M artists who are virtually ignored...it's sickening. (Some don't even rate a compilation!)

And that's why we're here. If UMG had their way, the old A&M recordings would just conveniently up and disappear, forgotten. Never mind the fact that without all of A&M's 60's successes, there would BE no A&M! Today's A&M has no soul. The soul left when Alpert and Moss sold out in 1989...and when a label is reduced to "logo" status for a conglomerate, I don't have an emotional attachment to it anymore. Makes me miss the old days.

-= N =-
 

Harry

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I picked up the new CD this morning on the way to work, and as expected, there's not a whole lot special about this release. It's simply a Carpenters entry into the series that Universal has been churning out since the "turn of the century."

That's not to say that there isn't *anything* interesting on here. First off, it features the latest and greatest remixes of virtually every track. Most interesting about that is that Richard actually segued "Love Is Surrender" into "Maybe It's You", just the way they first appeared on the CLOSE TO YOU album, but now in remixed fashion.

The new liner notes were written by Robyn Flans, in July 2002, and are a rehash of the stories we've heard a thousand times. The credits list Richard as the compilation producer and Bernie Grundman as the masterer, so some continuity to the old days still exists. There's a listing of currently available Carpenters albums which includes the new ESSENTIAL but not the old FROM THE TOP. Also listed are others in the Millennium series from other artists. The track listing inside has production credits and chart information if applicable.

It's been noted in this thread that neither "Close To You" nor "We've Only Just Begun" are included in this release. The other two huge 'bread+butter' songs not present were the next two big singles, "Rainy Days & Mondays" and "Superstar." Plus, their first chart entry "Ticket To Ride" is also absent. So Richard was able to compile this low-priced entry without giving away the store, yet still include their two number one singles and three more top-ten hits.

The entire Millennium Collection set of discs seems to be on sale at Borders, where I picked this up. $7.99 + tax -- unbeatable! The list of albums in the series (minus this one and perhaps other new entries) can be found at: http://www.universalchronicles.com/catalog.asp?cattype=4

Harry
NP: radio at work
 

davidgra

Active Member
Speaking of "Maybe It's You" on this new CD, has anyone else noticed that this remix (the 1990 remix from FROM THE TOP) has an alternate vocal take on the first verse?

Karen's phrasing and at least one of the actual notes she sings are different from the original CLOSE TO YOU recording on the phrase "just never been the kind who can pass a lucky penny by."

Has anyone ever heard an explanation for this change? Was perhaps the original lead vocal track damaged and Richard replaced it with the work lead or with an alternate lead take? Or could it have been an accident, using the wrong lead recording in the remixing?

I'd love to know what the story is...

David
 

Harry

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davidgra said:
Karen's phrasing and at least one of the actual notes she sings are different from the original CLOSE TO YOU recording on the phrase "just never been the kind who can pass a lucky penny by."

It happens on the word "never". In the original album track, Karen sings both syllables of the word "never" on the same note. In the alternate take that's present on FROM THE TOP and now the new 20th CENTURY disc, Karen changes the second syllable of "never" up to match the next word, "been".

It's likely either a technical glitch that Richard was hearing and wanted to correct, or perhaps he really liked the phrasing on that part of that particular take better, and as long as he was remixing the whole thing, decided to make it as good as he could. With such attention to detail, it's no wonder that it seems to take forever for these remixes to filter out.

Harry
NP: "Maybe It's You" Carpenters
 

Rick

Member
After having the new 20th Century Masters disc for over 24 hours now here are a few of the surprises I've noted:

On "Please Mr. Postman" there seems to be a few new bass and guitar lines. Especially at 1 minute 33 seconds into the song where Karen sings "a card or a letter" there's an interesting quick little guitar part.

Both "Bless The Beasts And Children" and "Love Is Surrender" have new and stronger drum patterns. "Love Is Surrender" seems to also have some new keyboard, guitar and percussion parts. I really like what Richard has done with this song.

I am very pleased to have this new disc.

"This Masquerade" is the best song on the set. They really need to promote this song and get it played on the radio. For some reason it seems like the day has come for this song to be a hit!
 

scottb

Well-Known Member
Thanks to Harry I picked up my copy from Borders for $7.99. I'm very happy with this CD. The sound quality is stunning and the remixes are excellent. Any Carpenters compilation that has "Love Is Surrender" will find a happy home in my CD collection.

This is just a warm up for the box set.

Scott
 

Harry

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scottb said:
Thanks to Harry I picked up my copy from Borders for $7.99. I'm very happy with this CD. The sound quality is stunning and the remixes are excellent. Any Carpenters compilation that has "Love Is Surrender" will find a happy home in my CD collection.

This is just a warm up for the box set.

It IS better than I expected.

Gee I wish I got a commission from the sale at Borders!

Harry
NP: radio at work
 

Geographer

Well-Known Member
While purchasing this CD today, I found it in the "Bargain" bin for $9.98. Then browsing in the same store, it was also in the "Carpenters" bin for $11.98. Same CD, two prices. Guess which one I bought?

I think the mix of "Postman" is the same as on the "Carpenters Collection" which was offered only on TV. It has a new, stronger, baseline.

I like Richard's remixes! I agree with Scott. "Love is Surrender" is great!
 

Harry

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Same thing at Borders. There was a huge 20th Century sale rack with all titles stickered at $7.99. I didn't bother looking through them, since they weren't in order and I didn't have time to "shop." I went straight to the "Carpenters" section in Vocal/Easy Listening, and saw it marked with the standard $11.98 price. I grabbed that and went to pay for it. At the cash register, it scanned as "on sale" for $7.99, even though it wasn't stickered as such.

Harry
...running out for an early morning car appointment, online...
 
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