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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Downtown ... Journey Of A Heart' (Rounder)
Artist - John Waite

John Waite has the same problem fellow singer Paul Carrack has - they both have been in several bands across several record labels and done solo work. This makes for a challenge when compiling key tracks from their careers. John Waite did five albums with The Babys 1976-1980. Then he did four solo albums 1982-1987. Then he did two albums with Bad English 1989-1991. Now, as of this review, he has done five more solo albums 1995-2007. So, in order for 'Downtown ...' to be a complete (new) musical Waite experience it should include songs from all of those albums. Well, as you might guess it doesn't, but what it does interestingly provide is a collection of new recordings of Waite's greatest hits - including a stunning duet with Alison Krauss on a new rendition of the radio staple 'Missing You.' In this day and age where anyone can make their own compilations, it's nice that these alternate takes on some of his best work can now be found lovingly compiled on 'Downtown ...' Taking The Babys' 'Isn't It Time,' or Bad English's 'When I See You Smile,' Waite also adds an infectious version of Bob Dylan's 'Highway 61,' and the sweeping balladry of 'St. Patrick's Day' and 'New York City Girl' for good musical measure. Take it from me the album is wonderful, Waite's voice still distinctive and sharp, and for the Waite/Krauss track alone this album receives the highest of recommendations.