For Barbra Streisand’s early albums, the original pressings on the 360 label just have to be better, right?
Not in this case. It’s just another rule of thumb, one that will sometimes lead you astray if what you are trying to find are not just good sounding pressings of albums, but the best sounding pressings of albums.
Same with reissue versus original. Nice rule of thumb but only if you have enough copies of the title to know that you’re not just assuming the original is better. You actually have the data — gathered from the other LPs you have played — to back it up.
The best of the 360 pressings in our shootout did well, just not as well.
A classic case of Compared to What? Who knew the recording would sound better on the Red Label Columbia reissue pressing from the ’70s? Certainly not us, not until we had done the shootout.
This is why we do shootouts, and why you must do them too, if owning the highest quality pressings is important to you.
Our good later label pressings had all the richness and Tubey Magic of the 360s — one really couldn’t tell which pressing was on the turntable by the sound — but had a bit more space, clarity and freedom from artificiality.
Watch your levels because she really gets loud on some of this material. The best copies, such as this side one, hold up. The lesser copies get congested, shrill and crude at their loudest, and of course get marked down dramatically when that happens.
Side two as very rich and smooth, yet clear and breathy – this is the right sound for ol’ Babs. The first track has tons of Tubey Magical reverb – check it out!
What Now My Love
Ma première chanson
I Wish You Love
Speak to Me of Love
Love and Learn
Once Upon a Summertime
I’ve Been Here
AMG 5 Star Review
This album devoted to songs penned by French composers marks Streisand’s first collaboration with producer/composer Michael Legrand, whom would go on to write the brilliant score for Yentl in 1983. It provides the singer with a bit of challenge, seeing that it calls upon her to sing not only in English but also French for the first time as well. Not surprisingly, she pulls off the numbers splendidly and JE M’APPELLE BARBRA is yet another exceptional release from Streisand’s sixties catalogue.
Barbra gives definitive renditions of the French classics “Autumn Leaves,” “Clopin Clopant,” “Speak To Me Of Love,” and the breathtaking “Once Upon A Summertime.” The lessor-known material (“What Now My Love,” “I Wish You Love”) is just as good, with “Free Again” (which had been performed in French as “Non C’est Rien” on Color Me Barbra) standing strong as one of her most amazing vocal performances. The disc also finds Barbra composing her first melody (“Ma Premiere Chanson,” which showcases her considerable writing talent in it’s early stages), as well as tackling a song that was originally written for Edith Piaf (“Le Mer”), on which Streisand really excels.
Det. Abilene, Amazon