Dionne Warwick box set reissue, album review

5.00

16 album Dionne Warwick reissue, Edsel

Let’s just get the facts and figures out of the way first. Here, on three double CDs and one three-CD set, are Dionne Warwick’s first 16 albums, recorded for the Scepter and Warner Bros labels from 1962 to 1973, along with 22 bonus tracks, many of which are previously unissued.

Together, they stand as an enduring monument to possibly the greatest  collaboration in pop history. Burt Bacharach wrote the music, lyricist Hal David the words and Ms Warwick  supplied the sublime vocals.

It was a triumvirate made in heaven, turning out  three-minute masterpieces that combined soulfulness and subtlety and set a benchmark that few others could aspire to.

The quality is apparent from the first album, Presenting…, with tracks such as the aching “This Empty Place”,  the powerful “Don’t Make Me Over” and the wistful “Wishin’ and Hopin’”.

By the time of album No 2, she has, with the help of B&D, conquered the market in power ballads with the achingly impressive “Anyone Who Had A Heart”. But it’s in the next album, Make Way For, that she reaches the heights.  Are there any other three consecutive album tracks that match the majesty of  “Reach Out for Me”, “You’ll Never Get to Heaven (If You Break My Heart” and my choice for the finest pop/soul song of the Sixties, “Walk On By”.

Dionne Warwick's 16 album reissue Dionne Warwick's 16 album reissue But it’s not all Bacharach and David. There’s an attractive version of the Disney staple “Zip-A-Dee Doo-Dah” done in Phil Spector-stlye on the first album, while The Sensitive Sound  has  clutch of tracks Dionne cut in London, including a storming version of the Roy Hamilton hit “You Can Have Him” where she gives full vent to her gospel background as one of the Drinkard Singers (another member of the  family-based group was her aunt, Cissy Houston, mother of the troubled Whitney).

By the time we’re on to the second collection, the collaboration is in full throttle with Dionne exploring some of B&D’s greatest songs including “What The World Needs Now is Love”, “I Just Don’t Know What to Do With Myself”, “Trains and Boats and Planes” and "Alfie", with some diversions on the way including a Live in Paris album which was anything but (sadly, its mostly studio tracks with dubbed applause) and the obligatory show tunes album, that includes “Summertime” and “You’ll Never Walk Alone”.

The standard set in the first two sets is maintained in the third with the world-weariness of “I Say A Little Prayer”, the heartache of “Another Night” and  songs such as “(There’s) Always Something there To Remind Me” and “Do You Know The Way to San Jose?” that show Dionne and her writing team at the top of their game.

The final set of four albums takes into the 70s, when the songs were still good – “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again”, “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head and the under-rated “They Don’t Give Medals (To Yesterday’s Heroes)” – but the cracks were beginning to show in the relationship between Bacharach and his lyricist David. 

Dionne battled on with a new label, Warner Bros, but success was getting harder to come by to and even a collaboration with ex-Motown songwriting stars Holland, Dozier and Holland failed to find a market (although after the timeframe of these albums she would find renewed success with “Then Came You”).

Still, these 16 albums display what can happen when the right singer finds the right songwriters – and there’s a bit of magic in the air.

Beautifully presented in slipcases with excellent sound and exemplary sleevenotes by soul music expert Tony Rounce, these are reissues to cherish.

Click here to buy the Dionne Warwick reissue set
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey

film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat

Arts and Entertainment
A sketch of Van Gogh has been discovered in the archives of Kunsthalle Bremen in Germany
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Eleanor Catton has hit back after being accused of 'treachery' for criticising the government.
books
Arts and Entertainment
Fake Banksy stencil given to artist Alex Jakob-Whitworth

art

Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift is heading to Norwich for Radio 1's Big Weekend

music
Arts and Entertainment
Beer as folk: Vincent Franklin and Cyril Nri (centre) in ‘Cucumber’
tvReview: This slice of gay life in Manchester has universal appeal
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
‘A Day at the Races’ still stands up well today
film
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tvAnd its producers have already announced a second season...
Arts and Entertainment
Kraftwerk performing at the Neue Nationalgalerie (New National Gallery) museum in Berlin earlier this month
musicWhy a bunch of academics consider German electropoppers Kraftwerk worthy of their own symposium
Arts and Entertainment
Icelandic singer Bjork has been forced to release her album early after an online leak

music
Arts and Entertainment
Colin Firth as Harry Hart in Kingsman: The Secret Service

film
Arts and Entertainment
Brian Blessed as King Lear in the Guildford Shakespeare Company's performance of the play

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
In the picture: Anthony LaPaglia and Martin Freeman in 'The Eichmann Show'

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Anne Kirkbride and Bill Roache as Deirdre and Ken Barlow in Coronation Street

tvThe actress has died aged 60
Arts and Entertainment
Marianne Jean-Baptiste defends Joe Miller in Broadchurch series two

tv
Arts and Entertainment
The frill of it all: Hattie Morahan in 'The Changeling'

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny may reunite for The X Files

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
TV
News
A young woman punched a police officer after attending a gig by US rapper Snoop Dogg
people
Arts and Entertainment
Reese Witherspoon starring in 'Wild'

It's hard not to warm to Reese Witherspoon's heroismfilm
Arts and Entertainment
Word up: Robbie Coltrane as dictionary guru Doctor Johnson in the classic sitcom Blackadder the Third
books

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Hacked off: Maisie Williams in ‘Cyberbully’

Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challenge

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything and Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game are both nominated at the Bafta Film Awards
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee