Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fanny - First Time in a Long Time: The Reprise Recordings (1969-1973 us female rock and pop rock - Rhino handmade boxset - MP3 320K and FLAC)

It's amazing that this four-CD box set exists in the first place, considering not only that Fanny never had a Top 100 album, but that they've never had a particularly big cult following either.

But here it is, albeit in a limited edition of 5,000 (sold in North America only). And all the stops were certainly pulled to assemble material, including not only all four of their early-'70s Reprise albums, but dozens of extras, many of them unreleased.

Non-LP singles, single-only versions, home and studio demos (the earliest of them dating from July 1969, when they were still known as Wild Honey), alternate versions, outtakes: they're all here.

Plus there's more: the tracks on the Canadian version of their debut album (which included three alternate versions never released elsewhere, as well as some cuts that only came out in the U.S. as non-LP singles) that didn't make it onto the U.S. configuration; seven songs from an April 1973 Philadelphia concert; four tracks from a live April 1972 Cleveland performance; six cuts from a demo session for the Mother's Pride album; even four Reprise radio commercials.

Not to mention a 52-page booklet with extensive interview quotes from June Millington, Jean Millington, and Alice de Buhr. By definition any serious fan of any act is going to be pleased with such thoroughness. But all the bells and whistles don't act as convincing evidence that Fanny were any more than an ordinary, at times mundane, early-'70s rock band, leaving aside their pioneering status as an all-woman group on a major label that played their own instruments and wrote most of their material.

The loads of non-LP and unreleased material aren't all that different than from what ended up on the four proper albums, though sometimes they show a more explicitly soul direction, as on the cover of Maxine Brown's "One Step at a Time" and the unreleased take of the Supremes' "Back in My Arms Again."

The live recordings do prove that the band could rock convincingly and tightly on stage, and the fidelity on those is decent, though on the Cleveland cuts in particular it probably wouldn't have been judged up to release standard.

Some of the demos are a mite folkier and more singer/songwriter-oriented than the albums, though that might be due more to the more basic arrangements than the material.

Note that this doesn't include absolutely everything Fanny did; there's nothing from their post-Reprise album for Casablanca, and an archival live album of 1972 stuff done in Cleveland contains music not on this box (by Richie Unterberger).

Fanny - Blind Alley (1971):

Disc 1:
01.Come and Hold Me 2:46
02.I Just Realized 4:00
03.Candlelighter Man 3:35
04.Conversation With a Cop 3:09
05.Badge 3:01
06.Changing Horses 3:48
07.Bitter Wine 3:17
08.Take a Message to the Captain 3:31
09.It Takes a Lot of Good Lovin' 4:25
10.Shade Me 4:39
11.Seven Roads First Version 4:19
12.Charity Ball First Version 2:52
13.Place in the Country First Version 3:34
14.Changes 2:16
15.One Step at a Time 3:03
16.Nowhere to Run 3:20
17.Seven Roads Second Version 3:47
18.Lady's Choice 2:47
19.New Day 3:43
20.I Find Myself Demo Version 4:04
21.Queen Aretha Demo Version 4:20
22.Flame Tree Demo Version 3:11
23.Fanny Reprise Records Promo One 0:23
24.Fanny Reprise Records Promo Two 0:23
25.Fanny Reprise Records Promo Three 0:32

Disc 2:
01.Charity Ball Second Version 2:29
02.What Kind of Lover 2:58
03.Cat Fever 3:23
04.A Person Like You 2:58
05.Special Care 4:23
06.What's Wrong With Me? 1:43
07.Soul Child 3:51
08.You're the One 4:10
09.Thinking of You 3:25
10.Place in the Country Second Version 3:08
11.A Little While Later 5:40
12.Charity Ball Single Version 2:29
13.True Blue 1:03
14.Candlelighter Man 2:54
15.Summer Song 4:07
16.Tomorrow 2:15
17.Rock Bottom Blues Instrumental 3:08
18.Ain't That Peculiar 4:05
19.Knock on My Door 3:19
20.Blind Alley 4:35
21.You've Got a Home 3:47
22.Wonderful Feeling 3:18
23.Borrowed Time 3:26

Disc 3:
01.Hey Bulldog 3:55
02.Think About the Children 4:10
03.Rock Bottom Blues 3:08
04.Sound and the Fury 3:04
05.The First Time 4:57
06.Rock Bottom Blues Original Vocal 3:14
07.Wonderful Feeling Single Version 3:16
08.Young and Dumb 3:33
09.Hey Bulldog Live 4:41
10.Summer Song Live 4:44
11.It Takes a Lot of Good Lovin' 3:52
12.Badge Live 3:31
13.Young and Dumb Live 4:53
14.Last Night I Had a Dream Live 4:57
15.Ain't That Peculiar Live 4:35
16.Borrowed Time Live 3:30
17.Place in the Country Live 3:38
18.Knock on My Door Live 5:05
19.Charity Ball Live 5:46

Disc 4:
01.Lonesome Pine 4:43
02.Beside Myself 4:05
03.I'll Never Be the Same 4:08
04.All Mine 4:25
05.Old Milwaukee 3:12
06.Long Road Home Demo Version 3:29
07.Back in My Arms Again previously unreleased 3:43
08.No Deposit, No Return previously unreleased 2:27
09.Last Night I Had a Dream 3:55
10.Long Road Home 2:55
11.Old Hat 4:14
12.Solid Gold 2:54
13.Is Otvreally You? 5:23
14.All Mine 3:24
15.Summer Song 3:11
16.Polecat Blues 3:14
17.Beside Myself 3:54
18.Regular Guy 2:25
19.I Need You Need Me 4:55
20.Feelings 1:58
21.I'm Satisfied 3:08
22.Fanny Reprise Records Promo Four 1:03
23.'Till Then Demo Version 0:18

*Jean Millington (vocals, bass)
*June Millington (vocals, guitar)
*Alice de Buhr (vocals, drums)
*Nickey Barclay (vocals, keyboards)

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