10 Favorite Reissues and Compilations of 2011: Jason P. Woodbury

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Welcome to another installment of Up on the Sun's 2011 Review. Over the next week, editor Jason P. Woodbury and the staff will countdown their favorite songs, shows, national and local releases of 2011.

Earlier this year, someone called me "an old soul." A little earlier, someone joked that my tastes were that of a That '70s Show reject. I make no apologies. The history of pop music is littered with also-rans, sideshows, and shoulda-been-huge acts.

Of course. the reissue and compilation industry is loaded with plenty of sub-par releases, the kind of things that were undiscovered for a reason. Not the case with these 10 releases, each containing slabs of vital funk, rock, blues, gospel, pop, or soul, depending on the record.

10. Charles "Packy" Axton, Late Late Party (Light in the Attic)

Light in the Attic always nabs a couple notes for reissuing stellar gems from the past. This collection of pre-Stax recordings from the assorted outfits of Charles "Packy" Axton is greasy Memphis soul at its finest. When no less an authority than Jim Dickinson states, "He was one of the coolest people I ever met," would you expect any less?

The Martinis (Charles "Packy" Axton) - "Key Chain" by LightInTheAtticRecords

9. DJentrification, Funky Oddway (not released)

It's a shame that DJentrification didn't release this mix-via-the interwebs, because it's a damn phenomenal primer on Phoenix music past.

Performed as a live, all-vinyl DJ set on Friday, August 12 at the Lost Leaf, DJentrification melded heavy funk, Chicano soul, new wave, and punk, all from Phoenix.

8. Bobby Charles, Bobby Charles (Rhino Handmade)

Rhino Handmade is always doing excellent stuff, but the label's Bobby Charles reissue, packaged in a beautiful wood case, makes a compelling argument for physically released music. Backed by members of the The Band, Dr. John, and more, Charles should be more recognized. This fantastic reissue serves to educate the willing.

7. Bobb Trimble, The Crippled Dog Band (Yoga Records)

This '83 effort finds outsider artist teamed with the teenaged Crippled Dog Band in Worcester, Massachusetts. Trimble wasn't a fan of the record; he dumped the entire 500-count LP pressing in an office park bin. Luckily the folks at Yoga Records know the score, issuing the album earlier this year as it was originally intended.

6. Beach Boys, Smile (Capitol Records)

Well, it took nearly 45 years, but Smile, in all her glory, was worth the wait. The deluxe, 3D packaging is incredible, and the exhaustive collection of sounds and full songs proves that Brian Wilson was on to truly on to something (even if he wasn't sure what).




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