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The Original Singles 1965-1967, Vol. 1

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Album Review

The Byrds were musical pioneers and a great album-producing band, but they were also masters of the form in terms of singles. At the time of the Byrds' formation, singles were still king, and it was the only way for a band to make an impact. The Byrds put out singles from the start with "Mr. Tambourine Man," a consciousness-raising track recorded in late 1964. Aside from the incredible fusion of folk and rock, Original Singles, Vol. 1 (1965-1967) has a real sound to it. Part of this has to do with producer Terry Melcher's excellent production — blending the Beach Boys' "Don't Worry, Baby" with elements of the Beatles. Through tracks like "Turn, Turn, Turn," "Feel a Whole Lot Better," "Eight Miles High," "So You Want to Be a Rock & Roll Star," and numerous others — including B-sides — the Byrds showed themselves able to encapsulate their complete musical direction in two hit singles. A rare feat indeed.


Formed: 1964 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Although they only attained the huge success of the Beatles, Rolling Stones, and the Beach Boys for a short time in the mid-'60s, time has judged the Byrds to be nearly as influential as those groups in the long run. They were not solely responsible for devising folk-rock, but they were certainly more responsible than any other single act (Dylan included) for melding the innovations and energy of the British Invasion with the best lyrical and musical elements of contemporary folk music. The jangling,...
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