Rod Stewart: Storyteller, The Complete Anthology

review rod stewart x1 congThis is not the first Rodders anthology and it won’t be the last, but it’s out in time for Christmas, so unless you have a time machine in the back bedroom, it’s the most recent.
It comes with sleeve notes from Rodney, which are actually pretty good. Serious songs are treated more seriously than others, some he concedes are on because they are how he evolved, and some he has no idea about.
The 4CD set opens with Good Morning Little Schoolgirl — opening lines: “Good morning little schoolgirl / Can I come home with you? / Tell your mama and your papa / I’m a little schoolboy too / Come on now pretty baby / I just can’t help myself.” Sonny Boy Williamson’s blues standard would meet a different reception were it to be released today. John Paul Jones is on bass for this, Rod’s first recording session.
After this, CD1 mostly riffs through covers of blues songs until In A Broken Dream, a hit for Python Lee Jackson when Rod — who sang on the song in return for a set of car seat covers (Wikipedia) or carpets for the same car (Rod’s notes) — was later better known. “I was conned,” writes Rod.
(Several reviewers described this song as “obscure”, which suggests they need to go back and learn the basics.
Handbags and Gladrags and Gasoline Alley are also on CD1. (Which contains the few Faces tracks the CDs include).
CD2 kicks off with Maggie May, “the turning point” as Rod writes in the notes, followed by songs such as Stay With Me, You Wear It Well and I’d Rather Go Blind.
CD3 hauls anchor with Sailing and follows this with the likes of Tonight’s The Night, The First Cut Is The Deepest and The Killing Of Georgie (Part I And II), as well as Hot Legs and Do Ya Think I’m Sexy.
CD4 takes in Baby Jane, Some Guys Have All The Luck and Every Beat Of My Heart.
No new tracks, no lost studio tapes, just hit after hit. Rod’s written some outstanding tunes, which tend to get forgotten under his football-loving multiple-nuptualising many-layered hair persona.

About jerobear

Weekly newspaper editor in Cheshire, England. I blog my editorials and the CDs I write about. I play drums, drink coffee, play music, meditate. I hate filling in forms.

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