The Byrds: David Crosby (vocals, guitar); Jim McGuinn (vocals, 12-string guitar); Chris Hillman (vocals, bass); Gene Clark (vocals, tambourine); Michael Clarke (drums).
Reissue producer: Bob Irwin.
Recorded between January 20, 1965 and April 22, 1965.
Includes original liner notes by Billy James, and new liner notes by David Fricke and Johnny Rogan.
All songs have been digitally remastered using a 20-Bit Super Mapping system.
One of the greatest debuts in the history of rock, Mr. Tambourine Man was nothing less than a significant step in the evolution of rock & roll itself, demonstrating that intelligent lyrical content could be wedded to compelling electric guitar riffs and a solid backbeat. It was also the album that was most responsible for establishing folk-rock as a popular phenomenon, its most alluring traits being Roger McGuinn's immediately distinctive 12-string Rickenbacker jangle and the band's beautiful harmonies. The material was uniformly strong, whether they were interpreting Bob Dylan (on the title cut and three other songs, including the hit single "All I Really Want to Do"), Pete Seeger ("The Bells of Rhymney"), or Jackie DeShannon ("Don't Doubt Yourself, Babe"). The originals were lyrically less challenging, but equally powerful musically, especially Gene Clark's "I Knew I'd Want You," "I'll Feel a Whole Lot Better," and "Here Without You"; "It's No Use" showed a tougher, harder-rocking side and a guitar solo with hints of psychedelia. ~ Richie Unterberger
Entertainment Weekly (6/28-7/5/96, p.106) - "...illustrates why the best Byrds music still inspires musicians....And while time hasn't enhanced the group's forays into psychedelia...there are enough keepers to make you forgive their occasional tendency to fly into walls." - Rating: B+
Q (7/96, p.134) - 5 Stars - Indispensable - "...The Byrds took a plane to the knots and gnarls in the orginals and fashioned records that smoothly embodied the romance of rebellion and the exhilaration of escape..."
Melody Maker (5/11/96, p.50) - Recommended - "...`Mr. Tambourine Man' gave them both a Number One single and a record worthy of their sound, which was blue sky and tears of milk..."
Musician (8/96, p.90) - "I like the sound better here. The guitar interplay emerges with greater warmth and clarity, without over-thinning the wash..."
NME (Magazine) (5/11/96, p.46) - 7 (out of 10) - "...The Byrds...took rock music on an astral flight which everybody from Big Star to REM to John Squire have never come down from. MR. TAMBOURINE MAN...still bears up..."