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Bear Family sampler (BCD17038)

Marvin Rainwater, Bill Haley, Smiley Lewis, Conway Twitty, Amos Milburn, Dale Hawkins, Buddy Knox, Bob Luman, Jerry Lee Lewis, Wanda Jackson, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Frankie Lymon, Jack Scott, Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran, Carl Mann, Fats Domino, Treniers, Johnny Burnette, Rick Nelson, Cadillacs, Ronnie Hawkins, Bobby Darin, Glen Glenn, Sleepy LaBeef, Roy Hall, Carl Perkins, Piano Red, Shirley & Lee, Charlie Rich, Roy Orbison, Rusty York, Lloyd Price, Sonny James, Connie Francis, Pat Boone.

Taken from the Bear Family label's famous reissue programme that covers the cream of America's greatest rockers, this 36 tracker is a treasure chest of rock'n'roll and rhythm and blues tunes and although it is essentially a sampler, this CD stands as a tribute to American music when it was filled with raw and reckless passion.

Hard bitten rockers like Dale Hawkins' Susie-Q, The Trenier's Rockin' is Our Business, The Cadillac's Speedoo, Charlie Rich's Break Up, Wanda Jackson's Let's Have A Party, Jerry Lee Lewis's Breathless and Amos Milburn's Chicken Shack Boogie rub shoulders with Sleepy LaBeef's Tore Up, Frankie Lymon's I Want You To Be My Girl, Roy Hall's Three Alley Cats, Ricky Nelson's Stood Up, Jack Scott's Leroy and Piano Red's Big Rock Joe From Kokomo.  Connie Francis appears with her 1959 hit Lipstick On Your Collar, Bobby Darin rips into the fabulous Queen Of The Hop and other folks sing their versions of the hits - Bob Luman screams out Billy Lee's Red Hot, Pat Boone fools around with Rock Around The Clock, Carl Mann cranks out a creditable Blueberry Hill and the Johnny Burnette Trio brings new life to Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee.  I've just realised how short these tunes are - only one of these plays for more than two and a half minutes. Who'da thunk that Eddie Cochran could fit all the rockin' frenzy of 20 Flight Rock into just one minute forty two seconds?

All We Wanna Do Is Rock is a great taster for the Bear Family catalogue but more than that, it's a thrilling set of high energy 1950s rock music that sounds completely fresh and vibrant. Guaranteed, you'll be checking out your favourite tracks from the info supplied on the sleeve and getting more Bear Family CDs onto your racks (All available from yo' pals here at Red Lick of course!) ...but right now I'm going for another blast of Tore Up by Sleepy LaBeef


Review Date: July 2010

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