November 7th, 2006
The track list for the new two-disc Dave Matthews Band “Greatest Hits” CD, entitled The Best of What’s Around – Vol.1 is out, and fans everywhere can begin pre-ordering the CD for its November 7 release.
As the hook.net reported in August, the DMB had asked fans for input on track selections via an online poll on their website. Remarkably, the collection “compiled by fans” features two studio tracks from each album on disc one, and no live tracks recorded before 2000 on disc two.
According to Waldo Jaquith, who runs the DMB fan-favorite website, nancies.org, there have been some fan complaints about both discs.
“There’s been a run on people complaining about the studio disc,” says Jaquith, “particularly that there are simply two songs from each CD, which seems a bit of a simplistic approach.” Fans are also wondering why a DMB greatest hits CD would ignore live tracks from the first half of the band’s existence.
“There’s the crowd that says post-2000 shows are overrated,” says Jaquith, ”and the crowd that says they’re better than ever.” Then there’s the “it’s all good” crowd, says Jaquith, who points out that it’s only “volume one,” and that more good stuff will follow.
Fans are also debating whether the “greatest hits” CD amounts to a big sell-out, a debate the band itself has weighed in on.
“Clearly, the band is opposed to this release,” says Jaquith, “or at least they want fans to think that. They’ve emphasized in all public communications that they’re only doing this because their record label is making them.”
However, as Jaquith points out, when DMB re-negotiated their record contract two years ago, they were hardly begging. “They got a great contract,” he says. “They were able to get the rights for all sales outside the United States. That’s amazing. They were basically able to get anything they wanted. Who wouldn’t want them on their label?”
Jaquith suspects the “greatest hits” release was the result of a deal that allowed the band to release more live material, a deal that might have had a bit of the devil in it. Still, fans seem to be generally happy with a collection of DMB’s best on one CD, and odds are the disc will be a big seller.