Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Happy MLK Day from Nina Simone!

Music lovers of all shapes and sizes hit pay dirt today with the relese of several new Nina Simone recordings-- compilations and expanded, remastered editions of earlier classics, all available now at your local record store.

For what its worth, I've still never found a Nina compilation as uniformly excellent in its song selection as The Nina Simone Anthology-- an absolutely essential two-disc collection that boasts just about all of Simone's definitive cuts, each one of them a gem. But some of these new sets sound fantastic in their own right-- especially intriguing is an expanded edition of Nina Simone Sings the Blues-- which earns a five-star rating from AMG critic Thom Jurek-- and Forever Young, Gifted and Black, a thematic compilation of Simone's protest and activist songs.

Who would have thought that the first must-hear new releases of 2006 would be recordings that are several decades old?


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