Reader's Digest Music: Carpenters, Their Greatest Hits and Finest Performances (1997)

Disc One: Close to You/Their Greatest Hits

1. We've Only Just Begun (1991 remix)
2. Superstar (1991 remix)
3. Rainy Days and Mondays (1991 remix)
4. Goodbye to Love (1991 remix)
5. (They Long to Be) Close to You (1991 remix)
6. All You Get from Love is a Love Song
7. For All We Know (1991 remix)
8. I Won't Last a Day Without You (1991 remix)
9. Hurting Each Other (1991 remix)
10. Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft (1989 remix)
11. Top of the World (1973 version, 1991 remix)
12. (Want You) Back In My Life Again
13. Ticket to Ride (1973 version)
14. Sing (1994 remix)
15. Can't Smile Without You (alternate version) (1997 remix)
16. Bless the Beasts and Childrens (1991 remix)
17. It's Going to Take Some Time (1991 remix)
18. Sweet Sweet Smile
19. Touch Me When We're Dancing
20. I Need to Be In Love (1991 remix)
21. Solitaire

Disc Two: Only Yesterday/Dreams and Memories:

1. Only Yesterday
2. One More Time
3. Those Good Old Dreams
4. Don't Cry for Me Argentina
5. Look to Your Dreams

Yesterday Once More/Looking Back

6. Yesterday Once More (1991 remix)
7. Fun Fun Fun (1997 remix)
8. The End of the World (1997 remix)
9. There's A Kind of Hush
10. Help
11. Jambalaya (On the Bayou) (1991 remix)
12. Deadman's Curve (1997 remix)
13. Johnny Angel (1997 remix)
14. The Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1997 remix)
15. Beechwood 4-5789
16. Bacharach/David Medley (Live)
a. Any Day Now
b. Baby It's You
c. Knowing When to Leave
d. Make It Easy On Yourself
e. There's Always Something There to Remind Me
f. I'll Never Fall In Love Again
g. Walk On By
h. Do You Know the Way to San Jose
17. Please Mr. Postman (1991 remix)
18. Reason to Believe (1987 remix)
19. Our Day Will Come (1997 remix)
20. One Fine Day (1997 remix)
21. Yesterday Once More (reprise)

Disc Three: When I Fall In Love/Romantic Gems

1. When I Fall In Love (1990 remix)
2. I Believe You
3. When It's Gone (It's Just Gone)
4. Because We Are In Love
5. Love Is Surrender (1987 remix)
6. Maybe It's You (1987 remix)
7. Make Believe It's Your First Time
8. Little Girl Blue
9. This Masquerade (1991 remix)
10. A Song for You (1987 remix)
11. Your Baby Doesn't Love You Anymore
12. Now
13. I Just Fall In Love Again

Silent Night/Beloved Christmas Classics

14. Silent Night (1990 remix)
15. Christ Is Born (1990 remix)
16. White Christmas (1990 remix)
17. Little Altar Boy
18. Merry Christmas Darling
19. Ave Maria (1990 remix)

Buy from Amazon:
Reader's Digest Music CD release, not sold in stores

This is quite a collection -- three very full CDs containing all sorts of songs from all periods of the Carpenters' career.

There are actually some songs that are unique to this collection. All of the songs in the "oldies medley" from Now and Then have been remixed, removing Tony Peluso's DJ chatter and all sound effects (revving engines, car crashes, etc.). So they are presented here for the first (and only) time as separate songs (well, sort of separate, as some of them run together with others).

The Bacharach/David live medley is presented here for the first time on a US release. Also unusual on this collection is the remix of the alternate version of "Can't Smile Without You."

Strangely, the booklet that contains the liner notes is smaller than a standard CD-size booklet, so it rattles around loosely in the box. The liner notes for this set consist mainly of an interview with Karen and Richard from 1978. Richard wrote a new introduction for the liner notes, and there are some editorial comments thrown in here and there that are just strange. For example, here is a direct quote from the liner notes:

"Close to You" was written in 1963 and first turned up on the third album of Dionne Warwick. The tune had such a profound effect on the Carpenters' lives and career that they later named an apartment building they owned after it.

I don't know if the author intended for that to be funny, but I found it hilarious...

While this set was originally only sold as a mail-order product through Reader's Digest, I found copies of it a number of years later at deeply discounted prices at an FYE store in the mall. I guess Reader's Digest dumped off excess copies to some retailers at some point. Used copies can usually be found at online retailers.

Produced by Richard Carpenter, Karen Carpenter and Jack Daugherty

Return to the Carpenters Album Index.