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The latest release from Heartbeat, this 16 track compilation is subtitled 'The Best of Studio One Women' and gathers together a choice selection of titles from the cream of the Brentford Road female roster. So, not only do we find familiar classics like Marcia Griffith's title track (the original version without overdubs) and Dawn Penn's perennial No No No, but we can also enjoy extended versions of Try A Little Smile and First Cut Is The Deepest, plus previously unreleased tracks like Cecile Campbell's Leave Me In Misery and Little Audrey's Sea Puss And Bammie. Mostly dating from the late 1960s (Feel Like Jumping) through to the early 1980s (Feel So Good), only Don't Worry About Me and Sleeping Trees suffer slightly from a late 1990s treatment.

The package comes with generous (and genuinely informative) sleeve notes, plus lyrics for each track. The sleeve notes suggest that there are plenty more titles like these lurking in the Studio One vaults, and I, for one, would like to see a sequel (hopefully featuring Nana McLean's Soul Respondent and Give Love Another Try).

But, any CD that features tracks by Myrna Hague and Jerry Jones gets my seal of approval...

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Various Artists (2000)

Heartbeat HB 222


Don't Worry About Me (Nana McLean); Sleeping Trees (Nina Soul); Feel Like Jumping (Marcia Griffiths); No No No (Dawn Penn); Whisper To Me (Cecile Campbell); Feel So Good (Denise Darlington); Try A Little Smile (Doreen Schaffer); Leave Me In Misery (Cecile Campbell); Come On Home (Webber Sisters); Sea Puss And Bammie (Little Audrey); Buck Town Corner (Jay Tees); Consider Me (Jennifer Lara); What About Me (Myrna Hague); First Cut Is The Deepest (Norma Fraser); Compared To What (Jerry Jones); Secretly (Hortense Ellis)