The Very Best of Julie London
offers an extensive overview of London
's recording career with 50 selections she cut for Liberty Records between 1955 and 1969. The tracks are not newly remastered for the most part, but are taken from EMI's series of import two-fers and the domestic reissues Ron Furmanek
and Bob Norberg
produced in the early '90s. London was an album artist, not a singles artist -- she had only one hit single in her long career -- but she was a consistent favorite with adult contemporary and vocal jazz audiences and recorded over 20 LPs. Her albums often sustained a certain mood or assembled songs around a theme, but The Very Best of Julie London
chops up her albums and rearranges the songs in no particular order -- the repertoire and sequencing seem almost random. The booklet provides no recording dates or session information, but readers can learn from which albums most of the tracks hail by wading through the liner notes. The anthology is useful for those who would like to sample London's 1960s album catalog without investing in several import CDs, but Julie Is Her Name, Vols. 1-2
remains the best introduction to the music of this sultry, sexy vocalist.