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2nd Is The Best (Or Is It?)

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

2nd Is The Best (Or Is It?)

It seems to be a trend lately for artists to re release an album with bonus tracks or remixes when sales aren't quite as high as they could be. Beyonce, Shakira and most recently, Amy Winehouse. Sometimes this works...sometimes it doesn't. When Shakira released "Oral Fixation Vol. 2" with bonus tracks, including Hips Don't sort of paid off. If it's an artist that I really like, and the tracklisting is different enough--I would consider purchasing the album again. This is often the case with import albums that are ultimately released in the U.S. When Natasha Bedingfield released UNWRITTEN in the UK, I got it because I saw it was making chart waves across the pond. It was eventually released in the U.S. as well and I decided to purchase it solely based on the fact that there was an additional track and a different artist featured on one of the old songs. That was enough for me. Emma Bunton's album FREE ME was released in the U.S. with 2 remixes included. I have both the UK and U.S. version of that album.

On Tuesday November 20th, Amy Winehouse's debut album , FRANK comes out in the U.S. --exactly 4 years and a month after it was released in the UK. I stumbled upon this album in the Virgin Megastore on Michigan Avenue in Chicago. This had to have been sometime during the summer of 2004. It was in the "Import Basement." I had heard of Winehouse, having looked at various UK music websites and keeping up with the weekly charts. I knew she was getting good buzz in her native country and I kept hearing all about F**k Me Pumps. The CD was not that expensive so I snagged it. I fell in love INSTANTLY. Jazzy and cool, this album is completely different than her successful BACK TO BLACK album of last year. Winehouse was a completely different person back then. She was healthy for one. However, reading interviews with Winehouse where she talks about that album--she was unhappy. It wasn't her album. BACK TO BLACK was much more personal. FRANK should not be dismissed by any means, in fact, in many respects it's a superior album.

Back to my dilemma...I would totally purchase FRANK again but I'm getting conflicting reports as to what the tracklisting will be. has the tracklisting as being the same as the original release. All however has the 2007 edition as having an unreleased track, titled Know You Now which I've never heard before. You can listen to a clip on All Music's website. If this track were actually on the album, I might consider purchasing it. I am a little upset that there are hidden tracks on the new edition. You Sent Me Flying and Cherry are combined into one track, similar to the version of the album I have. The original UK release apparently had them as two separate tracks. Hidden tracks always annoy me. But I digress. Come on Universal Records...make it worth my while. Release the album with a bonus track! The U.S. is dying for some new Amy Winehouse music, even if it's technically old. If you don't I'm just going to order the new Girls Aloud record (which I'm probably just going to get anyway).

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