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Greatest Hits Live

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Album Review

The Greatest Hits Live title of this previously unissued set of live 1972 and 1973 recordings (from concerts in Frankfurt, Germany and Edmonton, England) is dead-on accurate. No less than 11 of the 12 songs were Top 20 U.S. hits for Three Dog Night between 1969 and 1972, and the twelfth, "Try a Little Tenderness," had been their first Top 30 single back in early 1969. As Three Dog Night is not exactly the kind of band whose fans scour around for vintage live tapes, some might wonder what purpose the belated release of this very well-recorded material serves. For those who want a live set that's yet more hit-centered than the live LPs the group put out in 1969 and 1973, however, Greatest Hits Live almost sounds like an AM radio station of that vintage come to life on-stage, smash following smash. And while Three Dog Night never had much of a reputation as a live act, the band does play with respectable grit and energy in support of their three frontmen, even to the point of replicating the wobbly electric keyboards of "Mama Told Me Not to Come." Does that make this an intriguing complement to the studio versions of these songs, putting a new or unexpected spin on the very familiar tunes? Not exactly — the arrangements have a more spontaneous feel, but aren't too different from, and certainly not as slickly crafted or as good as, the original hit singles. For serious Three Dog Night fans, however, it's certainly a decent-sounding, respectfully packaged document of the group at their commercial peak.

Biography

Formed: 1968 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Three Dog Night scored a succession of 21 hit singles, including eleven Top Tens, and twelve consecutive gold albums from 1969 to 1975, thanks to the slick, sometimes soulful vocal harmonies of singers Danny Hutton, Chuck Negron, and Cory Wells and an excellent ear for quality material. While often criticized as commercial, the band was noted for its creative arrangements and interpretations, and their cover choices gave exposure (and royalties) to several talented songwriters: Nilsson ("One"), Laura...
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Greatest Hits Live, Three Dog Night
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