He was more popular, for a longer period, here than he was back home in America. Del’s voice and the sound on his records were instantly recognisable and many of the songs were written or co-written by him.
There have been Best Of collections before, a lot of them in fact, but never anything like this package from Edsel Records – 12 CDs in individual wallets inside a slip case outer packaging alongside a thirty-two page booklet. This is the ultimate Del Shannon collection and brings together everything Del Shannon recorded, so the over three hundred tracks includes all of his early A and B sides, his mid-6os work with Rolling Stones producer Andrew Loog Oldham and his 70s and 80s recordings with the likes of Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty and Dave Edmunds.
Among the lesser known gems is his early cover version of The Beatles’ From Me To You and A World Without Love which Lennon & McCartney wrote for Peter & Gordon and which appeared on Del’s 1964 album Handyman. Few will be aware (I’d forgotten) that he recorded an album of songs written by country legend Hank Williams or that in 1967 his Total Commitment album included The Stones’ Under My Thumb, Summer In The City (Lovin’ Spoonful), Pied Piper (Crispian St. Peters) and Sunny (Bobby Hebb).
OK, this isn’t going to be cheap, but if you were a fan of Del Shannon’s, finally, here’s something that will give you hours of listening enjoyment and a fitting tribute to a very talented man.