||From the Vault...
"The Complete Seekers"
© EMI Records
Year of Release: 1995
The Seekers related sites:
"The Complete Seekers"
As a young child, one of the many 45 rpm records I received was The Seekers' "Georgy Girl." It's B-side flip side was
"When The Stars Begin To Fall." When looking for this folk rock act on CD, it was a must to find both tracks. Obviously,
the A-side hit would most likely be easy to find on a one-disc best of/greatest hits. This 5-disc set from EMI, The Complete Seekers,
has both. (Bear Family also has it's own 5-disc box set, entitled The Seekers Complete.) There are different versions of both
songs: "Georgy Girl" has three: The original hit, and two other versions for the movie of the same name. The 45 single I had
was on the Capitol label. In looking at the Wikipedia article on "Georgy Girl," it was on Columbia, and it's B-side flip side was
"The Last Thing On My Mind." This being the Complete Seekers, all three songs are included in this box set.
Disc One has the Seekers' recordings from 1963 to 1964. Most of the tracks are from audition tapes. The others were masterd from
vinyl, and states that they are not broadcast standard. Most of the tracks on Disc One are sung by the males of the Seekers, and in
comparison, definitely has the sound of another popular folk rock act, The Kingston Trio. Likewise, a little of yet another popular
trio, Peter, Paul & Mary. The vinyl version of "When The Stars Begin To Fall" is on Disc One, with lead vocal by the only female
in the group, Judith Durham. Being from 1963/64, it is different than the version I remember, released later on the Capitol label.
Other tracks to mention, are the common songs recorded by folk rock artists: "Kumbaya," (which there are 3 versions of this famous
folk song), "The Hammer Song" (which is "If I Had A Hammer."), "The Wreck Of The Old '97," "Danny Boy," "Cotton Fields"
(which Creedence Clearwater Revival recorded their own version) and "Lemon Tree" (which Peter, Paul & Mary recorded).
Disc Two continues with the years 1964 to 1965, and continues with the Kingston Trio'ish folk style. "500 Miles" is another
common recorded track by folk artists. Yet one track that is impressive, is "The Water Is Wide." Bob Dylan would be another folk
artist favorite to record by, as there are two versions of his "Blowin' In The Wind." The songs lead by Judith Durham are more on
Disc Two, and having a Peter, Paul & Mary style. Another Dylan-penned tune is here: "Don't Think Twice It's Alright" (another
tune that Peter, Paul & Mary had recorded, likewise Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons.) Another classic is "This Land Is Your Land."
More on Dylan: "The Times They Are A'Changin'"
Disc Three's years are 1966 to 1967. Judith Durham gets to lead vocal on the Beatles' "Yesterday." The Cyrkle's "Red Rubber Ball"
(penned by Paul Simon) is here, and it's just as equal as the Cyrkle's version. Judith Durham returns with the lead on Dylan's "TUrn! Turn!
Turn!" (made famous by The Byrds) and the Mamas & Papas' "California Dreamin'" as it has a more folkish style than the most popular
version we all know. Harpers Bizarre and Simon & Garfunkel had the most popular versions of this song -- "59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin'
Groovy" and The Seekers put their own touch on this golden oldie. "If You Go Away" has to be one of the most loneliest and saddest
songs to hear. Glen Campbell recorded it, and so did the Seekers, with Judith Durham singing on this one. "Rattler" is another impressive
tune, having a more later folkish-Byrds feel, (maybe a bit Country?) and maybe a bit like The Beatles' "Blackbird."
Disc Four is the Hits, B-Sides and the 90's. The vocals of Judith Durham would be prominent on nearly all of these tracks. "I'll Never Find
Another You" was a huge hit, as it reached #1 in the UK. "A World Of Our Own" would be a Top 5 hit. "Someday One Day" was penned by
Paul Simon, as he was pursuing his own solo career in the UK, after Simon & Garfunkel's poor chart success of their album Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M.
The Seekers' hit of Simon's song in the UK would be Simon's first major solo hit, outside of his work with Art Garfunkel. "Nobody Knows The Trouble
I've Seen" is a standard, where many have covered this song, before, during, and after the Seekers' career in recording. The last six tracks from
disc four are all live tracks, as this leads to the fifth disc, which contains other live tracks and studio rarities. The fifth disc is titled
"Studio And Concert Rarities." One of the live tracks on the fourth disc was made popular by Peter, Paul & Mary -- "Puff (The Magic Dragon)."
"I Am Australian" has a Christian feel. Likewise, the live version of "Waltzing Matilda."
Disc Five's live tracks have spoken intros. The songs themselves are live recordings of many songs already from this box set: "You Can Tell
The World," "Blowin' In The Wind," "Kumbaya," "This Little Light Of Mine," "Don't Think Twice It's Alright," "Cotton Fields." Three radio jingles
are here, "3AK Jingle" The first one is a basic radio promo, the second one is an acoustic guitar instrumental, and the third one almost sounds
like Ritchie Valens' "Come On, Let's Go." "Blow The Man Down" is another recognizable tune, being an old English sea shanty tune. This
song has been heavily used in television shows and movies. A live version of Ricky Nelson's "Hello Mary Lou" is included. The live "Sweet
Adeline" was accapella, with some humour included off and on throughout.
The Seekers originated from Australia, yet their biggest success was in the UK. The main members were Judith Durham, Athol Guy, Keith Potger, and
Bruce Woodley. Throughout their peak success, the members have been intact. In 1968, Durham announced she would be persuing a solo career. Guy Athol
hosted his own Australian TV show, and pursued into politics in 1973. In 1969, Keith Potger formed and managed the New Seekers (they would have a huge
hit with "I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing." Bruce Woodley would release his own solo albums.
In 1972, Polger and Woodley reformed the Seekers without Durham. Louisa Wisseling was Durham's replacement. In 1977, Woodley left, and was replaced
by Buddy England. In 1978, Guy left and was replaced by Peter Robinson. One album was released in 1978, All Over The World In 1988, Guy, Potger
and Woodley reformed another Seekers lineup, with Julie Anthony. They recorded an album in 1989, Live On. In 1990, Julie Anthony was replaced by
Karen Knowles. The unique voice of Julie Durham was missing from the reformed Seekers, as the group split again. However, in 1992, the all of the original
members met together at resturant in Toorak. They hadn't talked about reforming, as they wanted to get to know each other again. Yet it would be two
months later they decided on a reunion. In 1993 they performed at a 25-Year Silver Jublie Convention. The performance was successful, as they would
continue to perform and record together, on and off ever since. Tours of Australia, and two more albums by 1997 were completed, including a Christmas album.
From 1995 to 2015, the Seekers would continued performing off and on, and were involved in many events, such as Olympic Games, television documentaries,
and their own postage stamp. Their The Best Of The Seekers from 1968 was listed in the October 2010 book, 100 Best Australian Albums.
EMI's The Complete Seekers is a definite complete look at the group's music. "Georgy Girl" is their most famous hit. On Disc 5, there
are two versions of "Georgy Girl" -- they were from the 1966 film of the same name, starring Lynn Redgrave and James Mason. The two versions are
from the film's opening and closing sequences.
There is a Seekers musical production of "Georgy Girl," based on the group's music. Just as Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons broadway musical
The Jersey Boys, the Georgy Girl musical features musicians recreating the roles of the original members of the Seekers. For more info,
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