Back to Back

by: Del Shannon/Tommy Roe

Del Shannon and Tommy Roe were two relatively unsung heroes of '60s pop music, each racking up bunches of hits (mostly self-penned) but never garnering the acclaim such true pop craftsmen should have. K-Tel's Back to Back should have been a nice -- if brief -- introduction to their work, featuring four Shannon classics including "Runaway" and "Little Town Flirt" as well as six Roe classics like "Dizzy," "Sweet Pea," and "Sheila." Sadly, the songs here are not the original versions; instead, they are more recent re-recordings. The new versions remain true to the original arrangements, each man's vocals are strong (though Roe's voice breaks a few times), and the musicians even do a good job of replicating the original sound -- but there is just no substituting for the real thing. You are going to want to hear the originals, not these. Highly unrecommended. ~ Tim Sendra

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