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Best of Michael Franks: A Backward Glance [Import]

Michael Franks Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 42.95
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The Best of Michael Franks: A Backward Glance The Best of Michael Franks: A Backward Glance 4.5 out of 5 stars (18)
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Product Description

This crossover star mixed smooth jazz, soft rock and Latin flavors to the delight of fans from the '70s to the '90s and beyond. This anthology covers all those years, bringing you his 1976 pop hit Popsicle Toes plus Eggplant; Tiger in the Rain; Soul Mate; Island Life; Baseball; Hourglass , and more! --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Frankly speaking .... Dec 1 2002
Format:Audio CD
If you haven't cottoned on to Michael Franks by now, it's time you wised up.
I heard "The Art of Tea" and "Sleeping Gypsy" at the one sitting in the late Seventies. I became an instant addict.
Eventually, my Michael Franks RECORD collection included every one of his albums. I'm now in the process of replacing the older ones with CDs.
I've only ever done that with a handful of discs (Pet Sounds, Sergeant Peppers, some Kenny Rankin stuff, and Miles' Quiet Nights ... oh yeah and Sinatra and Jobim)
Anyway, the Franks repertoire is cool, hip and sexy-smart. There's a hypnotic quality to the grooves - they seem familiar and you swear you've heard them somewhere else before. The lyrics are quirky, observational and intelligent - most of all intelligent.
Image Blossom Dearie a hundred years younger. If you love Blossom, you'll love Michael Franks.
If you've not traveled down the Franks road, then this greatest hits collection is a fair place to start.
But there's a danger here. Once sampled, you may find yourself on the right side of a Michael Franks' addiction.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Perry Como of the 'Boomer generation June 2 2001
Format:Audio CD
The above thought occurred to me when Como's passing coincided with a recent spell of Michael Franks listening on my part. My first impression of Franks was that, despite his skill at songwriting, he was a bit of a lightweight--I asked myself; "Who says jazz needs its own John Sebastian?" Anyone who has that initial reaction to Franks should do what I did--let him grow on you. It isn't an easy thing to do for rock fans, who are used to the first impression either hitting you or missing you by a mile--we're used to being figuratively smacked upside the head by our entertainers. But this album's a good start--the song you might already know is love song cum geography lesson "Popsicle Toes". Who can argue with the cleverness of a song that says the thing that turns you on the most about your lady is that she has cold feet? Which correspond of course to Tierra del Fuego? Franks' writing style is literate and tongue-in-cheek sexy and his talent for arranging shows the capacity to come up with whatever fits the song, rather than songs that all sound alike except for the lyrics and melody a la Barry Manilow. He can even come up with lyrics for another artist's tune (see "The Dream", based on the Yellowjackets' "Local Hero", found on his "Dragonfly Summer" as well as their live set). The singer-songwriter format is alive and well, and in Franks' case, better than ever. It's just that artists like him go more for staying power than short-term overhype.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolute Franks Oct. 30 1998
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
This compilation of "The Best Of Michael Franks", samples some of his best work from his 23 year body of work. It must have been an agonizing process in deciding which songs were to be included and which were to be left out (no "Living On The Inside","Down In Brazil", "Abandoned Garden", or "Rainy Night In Tokyo"? COME ON!). From "Posicle Toes", to "Tiger In The Rain", through "When I Give My Love To You" and finishing with "Hourglass", each song will conjure great feelings and familiar rythms of recent and distant memories. My only regret after listening to "The Best Of Franks", is that it was not produced as a live cd, where some new and possibly different nuances could have been added. An example of a different nuance of his work could be found in the song "3 today" from his "previously Unavailable" album, and how he subsequently performed "3 Today", at live concert at the Cellar Door in Washington, DC. In conclusion, the Jobim influences,his 1st class, all star studio musicians including Joe Sample, the Brecker Brothers, Larry Carlton, Jeff Lorber,Earl Klugh, and Bucky Pizzarelli,and of course Franks' unique vocal stylings make this cd a "must order", and a "must listen to" for any non- pretentious Jazz aficionado.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Smooth Jazz with a twist Oct. 16 2002
Format:Audio CD
I am a real hater of smooth jazz; in the old days people who hated jazz hated it for it's shronk-fests (think John Coltrane's "Ascension"), but now the hardcore generation know not of jazz's fire and only of its snooze-fests thanks the popularity of smooth jazz.
So why would I give a smooth jazz artist a fairly good rating? The reason is that Franks does create pretty sleepy songs, but the point of his music, unlike many other smooth jazz musicians is to be interestingly lyrical. He doesn't have very cliched song ideas (who would sing about popsicle toes and tigers in the rain?) and that is what makes him memorable. Just like real jazz artists attempt to amaze the audience with their creative improvising, Franks marvels us with his witty and metaphore-rich lyrics. Isn't that what jazz is about, pushing the boundaries? Well done Franks, you have proved that a genre that is so often so boring can have true artists.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful collection of gorgeous jazz/pop Dec 10 1998
Format:Audio CD
Subtle vocals, understated instrumentation, warmth and intimacy...Michael Franks is the quintissential adult contemporary artist: clever enough to win jazz listeners and slick enough to lure pop fans. This wonderfully comprehensive compilation includes popular early work like "Popsicle Toes" and "The Lady Wants to Know" as well as later, radio-friendly fodder like "Your Secret's Safe With Me" and "When I Give My Love to You." Some tunes (notably "The Art of Love" and "Soul Mate") are missed opportunities for commercial success when viewed in hindsight, and the drop-dead gorgeous ballads "Tiger in the Rain" and "Hourglass" are attestments to the strengths of Franks' arrangements, and production, and songwriting prowess. Oddball tunes like "Baseball" and "When Sly Calls" are forgiven in the face of such beauty.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Michael Franks A Backward Glance (Greatest Hits): Good collection of...

Michael Franks was born on September 18, 1944 in La Jolla, South California. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Dr. Joseph Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Overview, Excellent Swan Song
This cd marks Michael's departure from Warner Brothers. Before saying goodbye to the label that helped his career get firmly established, he produced this excellent highlight of... Read more
Published on Nov. 7 2002 by James Fenos
4.0 out of 5 stars Michael's Musical Moods
As one who purchased the Art of Tea on vinyl and have
followed his music over the decades, this CD is a
good representative mixture of Michael in all his moods. Read more
Published on June 4 2002 by "smithy0412"
4.0 out of 5 stars Mike is THE MAN
Contrary to what Bill Cooper said in his review, Michael Franks is a UNIQUE stylist. His voice is so unique and soothing..... Read more
Published on Aug. 28 2000 by Tony Lewis
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of the Best
Wow! I've loved Michael Franks' music since the 70's and this compilation expresses through each selection all my reasons why. Read more
Published on Aug. 3 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Slick, Sophisticated Smooth Jazz
An Italian tenor he's not, but Michael Franks has a style that's very comfortable. His lyrics are fun and filled with metaphores. Read more
Published on March 26 2000 by Donald E. Saint Pierre
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrible, even for a best-of collection
How this guy ever got a recording contract is beyond me. Boasting elevator music-styled lite jazz arrangements that make Kenny G. Read more
Published on March 1 2000 by Bill Cooper
5.0 out of 5 stars Quintesential Jazz Vocalist
Michael Franks' silky alto and prolific lyrics make him the quintesential vocalist of the pop- jazz movement. Read more
Published on Jan. 28 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Good collection of song's.
If you are a fan of Michael Frank's,then this is for you.This recording has song's from all of his recording's.I listen to it anytime. Read more
Published on Aug. 3 1999 by "spicer12"
5.0 out of 5 stars Out of this world
I give kudos to John Jones, above, who tried to use lovely words to describe the beauty of this Michael Franks album. Read more
Published on July 3 1999
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