Even Better Than The Real Thing: Your Take on A Musical Act’s “Best Of”

We all have our favorite musical acts, and many of those are famous enough to have Greatest Hits or Best Of collections. Usually, however, when I look at these, I turn up my nose at them. They’re often full of hits that were horrible, or leave out songs that to me, are classic even if they weren’t hits.

For an example, I give you Paul McCartney’s four CD collection, Pure McCartney. For a beginner, it’s probably a great place to start, if you don’t want to buy all of his albums. As far as I’m concerned, however, it could stand a lot of improvement.

So I give you the playlist that I compiled of my own Pure McCartney.

Spin It On

Pretty Little Head

Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey

San Ferry Anne

One More Kiss

Listen To What The Man Said

This Never Happened Before

With A Little Luck


Ballroom Dancing

No More Lonely Nights

Hope Of Deliverance

Maybe I’m Amazed

Coming Up (studio version)

Too Much Rain

Big Barn Bed


Magneto and Titanium Man (live)

Old Siam, Sir

Heaven On A Sunday

So Bad

Your Way

Take It Away

Silly Love Songs

Hi Hi Hi

Beautiful Night

Beware My Love (live)

Mr. Bellamy

Temporary Secretary

Another Day

Sing The Changes


Mull of Kintyre

Live And Let Die

Daytime Nighttime Suffering

Simple As That

Calico Skies

Oh Woman, Oh Why

Girls’ School

Keep Under Cover

Turned Out


Spies Like Us


My Love

Long Leather Coat


Junior’s Farm

Band On The Run

Pipes of Peace

Peace In The Neighbourhood

Run Devil Run



One Of These Days

Fine Line

Soily (live)

Loveliest Thing

Riding To Vanity Fair

Tug Of War

London Town

Getting Closer

Little Willow

Brown Eyed Handsome Man

Ever Present Past

As you can see, this compilation has plenty of hits; but it also has lots of deep cuts. There are songs that never got onto albums; in fact, there’s one song which until recently had never been released in the U.S. There’s one cover, and a few live tracks. My criteria for selecting a song was simple: Did I love it? Did I consider it “Pure McCartney”? If so, it went on there. If not, it didn’t. (I skipped one album entirely.) I had a lot of fun choosing songs and deciding on the best sequencing.

So what, for you, is your perfect Greatest Hits/Best Of album that has never been released, by the musician(s) of your choice? Feel free to tell us a bit about why you picked those songs, and why the resulting playlist is better than the collection(s) available. Have fun!