From “Simply” to “All The Best” – A Retrospective

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With the advent of “Love Songs” in 2014, we would like to review and celebrate Tina Turner´s previous Best-of collections and take you on a photo tour from 1991 to 2008.

1991 – Simply The Best

For many fans, the “Simply The Best” release surely stands still today as the one and only compilation of greatest hits. Between 1984 and 1989, Tina Turner only had released three albums under her own name. Only three albums at least in the eye of the overall majority of music lovers because the three solo albums she recorded before “Private Dancer” (1984) were and still are not so well-known except among fans who can´t get enough of her. Hence, it was a bit astonishing that there would be a greatest hits album as early as in 1991.

Tina Turner - Simply The Best - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – Simply The Best – Cover Collage

But it astounded the world nevertheless because it came with three new songs which were all released as singles plus a new version of “Nutbush City Limits (90s version)” in a very 90s-style disco style. Furthermore, it caught attention because Tina appeared in the promo photo shoots out of a sudden with a new hairdo, still big hair but not the lion´s mane she was famous for.

Best Singles - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – “Way Of The World”, “Love Thing”, and “I Want You Near Me”

And now to the most important trivia details:

  • The Canadian release was one song short and only contained 17 but not the regular 18 tracks.
  • The Australian release even had 19 songs on CD 1 and on CD 2 (yes, Australia got a second disc) you could find “The Best” as a duet with Jimmy Barnes
  • The release was accompanied by a collection of Tina´s video clips which appeared on every format which was fashionable back then: video cassette, video CD, laser disc (which even contained the clips for “Way Of The World” and “I Want You Near Me”), and a bit later also on DVD.
  • There was a special box with CD, video cassette, and picture postcards in a limited number of 10,000.

Buy Tina Turner’s Simply The Best on Amazon. Click Here.

1994 – The Collected Recordings

Only three years later, Capitol Records released an incredible treasure box called “The Collected Recordings”. And it was indeed a treasure box because it actually consisted of … collected recordings. Disc 1 focused on the Ike & Tina years, CD 3 presented the usual suspects, namely the big hits, but CD 2 was the one which could have qualified as a regular album of its own. That famous CD 2 was full of rare gems like “Johnny And Mary” (from the soundtrack of “Summer Lovers” – you surely don´t know the movie), or B-sides and unreleased songs like “When I Was Young”, “Games” or “Total Control”.

Tina Turner - The Collected Recordings - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – The Collected Recordings – Cover Collage

The box was not only a treasure box if you take the song selection into consideration but also because of its packaging design. It appeared as a standard 3-disc box but also in a 2-CDs heigh cardboard box incl. an extensive booklet with a kaleidoscope of impressive Tina Turner photos from 1983 until 1993.

Buy Tina Turner’s ‘The Collected Recordings’ on Amazon. Click Here.

2005 – All The Best

From three discs then back to two discs in 2005 – “All The Best” contained 33 tracks on two CDs and surprised with elegant and ladylike photos of Tina Turner. It also featured several new songs out of which “Open Arms” was released in two different formats. One of them was a single CD housed in a regular jewel case and contained also a new interview plus the Disney-song “Great Spirits” while the second edition was a small European-style CD single and contained only the title song and “The Best”.

Tina Turner - All The Best - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – All The Best – Cover Collage

Much to the dismay of the fans, Capitol did not release “Complicated Disaster” which indeed was a disaster because it surely would have scored much better than “Open Arms” which Tina herself called “a bit cheesy” in an interview. But well, it was a great year because she went on a promo tour, presented “Open Arms” live in several TV shows, threw in other songs like “Better Be Good To Me” in Canada and the US, and astonished the German TV viewers with a live version of “Complicated Disaster”. So, until now (2014), “Open Arms” was the last single she ever released.

Tina Turner - Open Arms - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – Open Arms – Cover Collage

But there was even more in that “All The Best” package. The studio version of “Tonight” with David Bowie? Yes, also that. But no, there was something else, something very special, namely the very dreamy ballad “Something Special”. And finally even a riddle from the 1996 promotional interview CD was solved. Back then, she elaborated on a song which was simple, so simple that everybody would be surprised to hear it, but it was special, and that was what the song was about, something special… Interesting enough, but nobody could figure out what she was talking about in 1996 because there was no song on the “Wildest Dreams” album which fitted to that specific characterization. Well, we got our answer in 2005 – and “Something Special” is truly a special gem.

Buy Tina Turner’s “All The Best” on Amazon. Click Here.

2008 – TINA!

In 2008 and 2009 Tina Turner embarked on her last world tour and the world stood still because typically, women of 69 don´t embark on world tours in Rock´n´Roll style. Alongside the tour, Capitol threw another greatest hits compilation on the market –this time simply called “Tina!”. It again gave birth to new songs, the complex “It Would Be A Crime” and the soul-style up-tempo number “I´m Ready”. Everybody waited specifically for that song as the opening number of the tour because it gained great popularity among fans though it was never released as a single. But she decided to start with “Steamy Windows”, and let´s face it: “Steamy Windows” is always a good opening number whether you are ready or not.

“TINA!” was available in different formats. You could buy the de luxe 3-disc version which had no exclamation mark (de luxe editions don´t come with exclamation marks!) and had the additional title “The Platinum Collection”. It had a slightly different cover photo than the 1-disc version which then was available in a plastic jewel case in Europe and Japan but in a cardboard sleeve in the US. Rumor has it that there were more “TINA!” CDs in airplanes from Europe to the US and back during the tour than any other CDs because the US fans had to buy the jewel case version for their collection while the European fans had to buy the cardboard edition (which was only 10 dollars anyway).

Tina Turner - TINA! - Cover Collage
Tina Turner – TINA! – Cover Collage

Buy Tina Turner’s ‘Tina!’ on Amazon. Click Here.

23 thoughts on “From “Simply” to “All The Best” – A Retrospective”

  1. I love Tina Turner’s Voice and LEGENDARY presence in the Music industry that will remain forever that’s what legends are made of (down in history) kinda of talent! She is retired and no longer performing. We could never replace her but we should allow the new talent an opportunity to prove themselves to be worthy of recognition. Scrolling through pics of Tina won’t bring her back.

  2. I have always enjoyed her music,dance and her georgeous hair.She is simply the best and I have always wanted to see her but to no avail. I even tried to get tickets to see her through an Oprah Show but you had to be at least fifty years old and I lacked a couple of years.I have always loved Tina and always will.

    1. Tina has gone through a lot Ike was not the only abuse she endured…Believe it or not The music listeners did not accept her as much here in the U.S. until she made it big in other countries. There is so much competition here in the U.S. that many times it’s more about the way you look or your style instead of How good you are at your job…
      #Tina Turner is Simply the Best! I am sure if she had one show now it would be packed out wall to wall Even when she performed with beyonce I am inclined to believe that most of the room was filled to come see Tina! lol because beyonce is nothing in comparison in the vocal ability or the vibe and positive energy that Tina Gives Us. In the encore when Tina Raised her hand at the audience and they ROARED I saw the look on beyonce face she was aggravated because she knows that no matter how much media hype she get SHE COULD NEVER EVER GET THE REAL FANSHIP OR LOVE OF THE PEOPLE LIKE TINA TURNER because she is not a real singer. TINA SINGS FROM THE HEART AND SOUL!

  3. I love Tina so many years. Never any other singer was so special to me.
    Liked to become a fan of someone from another generation, but it never happened. There is only one TINA!!!
    I loved the songs “Complicated Disaster”, “Something Special”, “It Would Be A Crime” and and especially “I´m Ready”. In Portugal they were not played on the radio (no promotion) and the public never heard them, only the fans. Only “Open Arms” played much on the radio. Once I hear “Complicated Disaster” in a small regional radio, but once…
    For me it was a mistake any of these songs must be part of her laste tour!!!
    I think the new singers have a lot more support from the press.
    What I really want is a new album… a TINA rock album .
    I’ll dreaming and praying.

    1. You are so right about the new singers that refers to what they call MAINSTREAM singers They generally are not real singers like the artist of Tina Turner’s time. They get a lot more support than Tina Turner did in her time. It’s seems to me that from the time of Tina Turner and currently the real artist/singers don’t get the support of the fans, company or the media support they deserve. There are artist out that deserve the fans support I am one of them and I have met others. Music fans are so stuck on one thing that they don’t search for us and we can’t get to them.

  4. Tina ….I adore & respect u….for ur strength & alent..ur simply the BEST!…..CONGRATULATIONS On ur marriage.:- U LOOK SO HAPPY..may God Bless..;-)

  5. Guys, hello. Why didn’t you include Love Songs CD here also? It’s a collection of songs. I know you have a separate item about it but it’s also a greatest hits. Thank you for your information and comments. You guys are experts! 🙂 In my opinion, The collected recordings are very nice and a bit of a secret, hard to find and get. I like my copy a lot! 🙂

  6. Dear Tina Turner,
    IF There is one thing?
    I must ask, to You , It is this,….
    If there was Anything, You wanted to Say of this Life?
    “What Would It Be”?

    May God Bless You & Yours Always,
    Betty Jean
    “Thank You for Your Enlightenment” ….

    1. I wanted to include that one and even another one “Play This In Store”, a promo best-of, but decided to just include in the regular releases.

      1. yea…it wasn’t all the great of a compilation….all that glitters though is a great kinda mini compilation

  7. One misc. fact about collected recordings: “One of the Living” was mentioned twice in the booklet, even described as being on of the tracks on cd two, but was not present on the cd! Why has this #15 billboard charted (same position as “the best”), Grammy winning song been ignored on all US compilations?? Love u Tina!!!’

  8. I have lived all these Compitations and Albums, each one has a different meaning to me, as each song delivers a different energy, and Moments in Life. What´s Love, my becoming Unconditiona fan, Runned to the TV to watch that video as reached Nr 1 here in Portugal. Only I can´t find enough good words to describe the Goodness it gives me. Later Typical male. What a video. Hot, Positive energy charged, Simply the Best Love thing, Way of the word in an automn afternoon. I´m happy i managed to attend Wildest Dreams Tour concerts and follow a bit Tina in Holland and Portugal.
    Every tour after i went to. I am only feeling a bit incomplete as I wish to meet Tina once more, with a bit more of time, to get to see her and get Tina´s autograph on my Passport edition Foreign Affair. I Hope.

    1. You should not have to feel incomplete, because God does not make junk,
      you should Honor to born at a time, to see and learn about yourself and Tina as a person of love and giving person… that is, my dear.
      So with all that said, Ya that was my dream to, to meet her, but through all the reading of everything and video’s, Tina I could read and listen too..I found out along the way, that we are all one, one “within” ourselfs..
      This woman (Tina, that i never got to meet in person), has taught me, to Keep God as your center always, prayer(talking to god) & mediations (listening to god),help you through your Lessons of life and you will Learn through your Failures(stepping stones in life & go around them) in this life).
      but in the end, If you believe in Yourself, your dreams to will come true…
      Take what you wish in this life and make the Best a reality for You. Think..
      So see my child you are NOT incomplete..at all…
      We All Love Tina, she had a gift, talent, personality that she shared with the world, and we all supported her,and that was a True Blessing she shared with everyone of the world…that my dear is AnneMae….show name “TINA”
      May God Bless You and Yours Always

      1. If Tina read this;
        I have always Wished for an picture/autograph from Tina/Annemae,
        and/or Oprah’s too..
        but something just says that won’t happen in my life time…
        but hope she reads this;
        mail to:
        37 Calicobush Road
        Levittown, PA 19057

  9. The brazilian edition of Simply The Best had Break Through The Barrier as the 18th and last track, but didn’t have Be Tender With Me Baby. The brazilian vynil version was a single LP, not double, with only 12 tracks in it, and in a very different order from the CD release.

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