25726-2 The Best of Dark Horse 1976-1989
Tracks 1 & 4 produced by George Harrison
Track 15 by George Harrison and Jeff Lynne
Released on October 17, 1989
Find it at GEMM
25726-2 cover
[high resolution scan]

A pparently, you can make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. The Dark Horse years are hardly synonymous with the best of George Harrison, though the records were seldom as bad as critics made them out to be. Sure, they had their soft spots (what ex-Beatles album doesn’t?), but you could make a nice exhibit out of the more tuneful entries, and that’s what happens here. “When We Was Fab,” “Got My Mind Set On You,” “All Those Years Ago,” “Wake Up My Love” and “Blow Away” scrape the sweet stuff from the hive without listeners getting stung. Also included are new tracks like “Cheer Down,” which was coproduced by Jeff Lynne and written with Tom Petty (both of whom presumably appear on the track). It’s a catchy number, “Poor Little Girl” is even better, though if you bought the recent single (which featured both tracks) then “Cockamamie Business” isn’t a compelling reason to collect this disc. The track selection is very good, making a few maverick choices (“That’s The Way It Goes” from Gone Troppo, “Here Comes The Moon” from his untitled 1979 elpee) and ignoring chronology (which accidentally casts “Love Comes To Everyone” as an artifact but otherwise works very well). The only knock I have on the collection is that it all but abandons Thirty-Three & 1/3, which was released too late to be included on George’s first greatest hits album. Including only “Crackerbox Palace,” and even then only on the CD version, is an obvious misstep, as “This Song” certainly belongs in the company of these songs. Someday, maybe, a double-disc compilation of George’s best solo music (perhaps including a handful of Beatles tracks) will grace the marketplace and render this superfluous. But until then, the uneven nature of his ‘80s output renders this compilation the post-Apple cart to pick from first. Unfortunately, I’m told, it’s currently out of print. The labels (out of the goodness of their wallets) will likely opt to produce a new career retrospective rather than reissue this disc, so you better start saving now. (Note: I'm actually trying to sort out what tracks appear on the US and foreign elpees and cassettes. I can only vouch for the US CD since I own it.)

25726-2 back sleeve
25726-2 back sleeve


  1. POOR LITTLE GIRL    4:32
  2. BLOW AWAY    3:58
  3. THAT'S THE WAY IT GOES    3:34
  5. WAKE UP MY LOVE    3:32
  6. LIFE ITSELF    4:24
  7. GOT MY MIND SET ON YOU    (Rudy Clark)    3:50
  8. (CD bonus track?) CRACKERBOX PALACE    3:56
  9. (CD bonus track?) CLOUD 9    3:14
  10. HERE COMES THE MOON    4:07
  11. GONE TROPPO    4:24
  12. WHEN WE WAS FAB    (George Harrison/Jeff Lynne)    3:56
  14. ALL THOSE YEARS AGO    3;44
  15. CHEER DOWN    (music by George Harrison, lyrics by George Harrison/Tom Petty)    4:07

    All songs written by George Harrison unless noted


GEORGE HARRISON -- vocals, guitars
Joe Brown -- backing vocals
Vicki Brown -- backing vocals
Eric Clapton -- guitars
Ray Cooper -- percussion, marimba, effects
Herbie Flowers -- bass
David Foster -- Fender Rhodes, clavinet
Steve Gould -- backing vocals
Willie Greene -- bass voice
Jim Horn -- baritone, tenor, alto and soprano sax
Jim Keltner -- drums, percussion
Bobby Kok -- cello
Al Kooper -- keyboards and synthesizers
Neil Larsen -- keyboards and synthesizers
Jeff Lynne -- guitars, acoustic guitar, bass, keyboards, backing vocals
Mike Moran -- keyboards and synthesizers
Mick Mullins -- backing vocals
Keith Murrell -- backing vocals
Del Newman -- string and horn arrangements
Andy Newmark -- drums
Ian Paice -- drums
Caroline Trevelyan Pass -- violin
Emil Richards -- marimba
Tom Scott -- saxophone, flute, lyricon
Henry Spinetti -- drums
Ringo Starr -- drums
Richard Tandy -- piano
Alvin Taylor -- drums
Willie Weeks -- bass
Steve Winwood -- polymoog, harmonium, minimoog, backing vocals
Gary Wright -- keyboards
Wherefore Art? -- design
Terry O'Neill -- photo

US October 17, 1989 Dark Horse/Warner Bros. LP/CD/CS 25726 lyric sleeve
GER 1989 Warner Bros. LP/CD 925 726  
BRA 1990 Warner Bros. LP 6709 092 lyric sleeve


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