Hard Workin' Man - The Jack Nitzsche Story Vol. 2 - Paper Reviews

"Hard Workin' Man" a printed record
I'm keen to feature all reviews, in print and on the web that have something of interest to say about the release of, "Hearing Is Believing". Lazy re-writes of the reviews of others which tend to litter the web are of no interest but favourable, or otherwise opinions are very welcome.
I can't read everything on the web and in print so would appreciate reviews being sent to the site. All contributors will be acknowledged. If the paper reviews could be typed and the original printed page scanned, I'd be very grateful!


Uncut Music November 2006 (pub. 10.09.2006)
* * * * *
Second compilation of genius producer's work

This follow-up to Hearing Is Believing manages to eclipse its predecessor, such is the diversity of the artists produced or arranged by the late Jack Nitzsche. From Bobby Vee's Brill Building pop to the Beefheart-sung title track (from the Paul Schrader film, Blue Collar) there are many highlights, but the sequence from The Everly Brothers' cover of Buffalo Springfield's "Mr Soul" (a 1968 out-take), through The Turtles' "You Know What I Mean" to The Monkees' finest moment, the single version of "Porpoise Song"complete with Nitzsche's glorious string coda, makes this seem like the best compilation tape someone ever made you.
Nathaniel Cramp

Uncut features a 60s photo from Jack's Reprise years. Check suit, white button down and black tie shades, you know the photo session. Captioned: Tinted love: another cool comp of Jack Nitzsche productions


Music Week October 14th 2006

Following the excellent reception afforded to Hearing Is Believing, which anthologised some of Jack Nitzsche's best work from 1962 to 1979, this equally impressive second volume corrals another 26 recordings made between 1960 and 1999 - the final work he produced before his 2000 death. Perfectly balancing the need for familiar material and rarities, Hard Workin' Man includes five previously unreleased tracks and another four that have never been on CD, alongside hits such as The Righteous Brothers' Just Once In My Life and The Turtles' You Know What I mean. Merry Clayton's powerful take on It's In His Kiss - the first recording of the song - more than matches Betty Everett's, while The Tubes' Don't Touch Me There is a tongue-in-cheek, punkish pop parody of Nitzsche's sometime partner Phil Spector's style and Teardrops Till Dawn draws one of the strongest vocals of the enigmatic country/soul vocalist Timi Yuro's career.
Extensive liner notes and rare illustrations complete an excellent and wide-ranging package.


record Collector December 2006 (pub. 10.11.2006)
* * * * *
Kaleidoscopic panorama of Nitzschean magic

Just as its companion, Hearing Is Believing featured 26 tracks from a range of artists, so volume two repeats the dose with 26 more selections from the priceless treasures that lurk among Jack Nitzsche's production credits. a glance at the track listing uncovers names as diverse as Captain Beefheart, Frankie Laine, the Everlys, The Righteous Brothers, Timi Yuro, Bobby Vee, Crazy Horse, The Turtles, The Monkees, John Lee Hooker, Miles Davis & Taj Mahal, not to mention Mr. Jack Nitzsche himself.
Mixed and matched in non-chronological order, the less obvious selections and previously unreleased tracks (from the likes of The Robins, Karen Verros, Tammy Grimes, Ral Donner, The Satisfactions, Zal Yanovsky and Nooney Rickett) offer a fascinating contrast to the more familiar material. The stylistic overspill from Nitzsche's historic association with Phil Spector and The Wall Of Sound is audible across large parts of the collection, but Nitzsche's particular genius is more than confirmed. In all, it's an overview of evolving pop and rock styles from the early 60s to the early 90s and beyond, all bound together by Nitzsche's unfaltering Midas touch.
Grahame Bent



Review from The Times 8 December 2006
* * * *

What this collection of the work of the arranger, producer and conductor Jack Nitzsche shows is the difference between a good record man and an inspired one. Nitzsche was able, for instance, to take a Fifties star such as Frankie Laine and coax him into providing the best performance of his life on Iím Gonna Be Strong. He also worked miracles with Bobby Vee, the Monkees and the session singer Merry Clayton.
John Clarke


Los Angeles Times 12 December 2006

The first career retrospective of the brilliant arranger-producer stirred so much interest last year that london-based Ace Records is issuing a second volume, a 26-track disc that includes six previously unreleased recordings. Nitzsche, who arranged such classic singles as Ike 7amp; Tina Turner's "River Deep, Mountain High," worked with a wide variety of artists and producers. This set includes such gems as a Captain Beefheart vocal on a tune Nitzsche co-wrote and arranged for a Paul Schrader film: the Everly Brothers' treatment (arranged by Nitzsche) of Neil Young's "Mr. Soul" and the Monkees' psychedelic epic, "Porpoise Song" (also arranged by Nitzsche). The music is endlessly fascinating, with every track having some intriguing twist to remind you that Nitzsche, who died in 2000 of cardiac arrest at age 63, was at work.
Robert Hilburn


Independent On Sunday 14 January 2007

A second volume documenting the penumbral career of the great arranger who did so much to make Phil Spector records sound like that. There are 26 songs, most of which sound utterly contiguous with the Wall of Sound. Those that donít, still define pop as a meaty, beaty, big and bouncy energy field in service to pop's highest values: melody and womp. You probably wonít know the works of The Gas Co, Emil OíConnor and The Satisfactions. But if youíve been fortunate in life youíll have already thrilled to Captain Beef-heartís "Hard Workin' Man" and Merry Claytonís "Itís in His Kiss". Womp with knobs on.
Nick Coleman


Reviews kindly supplied by Neil Scaplehorn, Mick Patrick, Roger Atkins and Harry Young.

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