Thursday, September 15, 2011

Joan Jett Fit To Be Tied: Great Hits by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts 1997

I've always had a soft spot for Joan Jett. Not a great voice, but it's hard not to notice how much she gives a damn. Simple rock 'n' roll. Why use four chords when three will do? And Joan's out there, shouting away with an invigorating insistence.

The Blackhearts are solid. Think AC/DC, but not quite that riff-heavy. Just a good hard rock band.

Joan always had an ear for songs. The covers she chooses, and invariably executes perfectly, are a big part of Joan's draw. Her versions of Jonathan Richmonds' Roadrunner, Sly Stone's Everyday People, Tommy James' Crimson And Clover, and especially the Mary Tyler Moore show theme Love Is All Around are all killer renditions.

Her own classics are here, too. Bad Reputation, I Love Rock N Roll, Cherry Bomb, Little Liar, Do You Want To Touch Me? (Oh Yeah), and the Springsteen penned Light Of Day, all rock hard and fast with zero subtlety. There's never any problem understanding what Joan means.

For a CD, I like the song selection here more than the recent 2010 Greatest Hits. Even though that one has more songs, it omits the essential Roadrunner, and Little Liar, which was a hit, and should be on any Jett hits package. This one from '97 is available cheap, even new.

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