November 24, 2022

MelodicRock.com

ROCK MUSIC REVIEWS – NEW, CLASSICS, RE-ISSUES & MORE

VAN STEPHENSON ‘Van’s Versions’ 2CD Set Out Nov 25 on MRC

MelodicRock Classics is proud and honoured to partner with the family of the late, great VAN STEPHENSON, plus his many co-writers and musical partners, to pay tribute to the legacy of the legendary singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist with a series of archive releases, culminating in two career spanning box sets, featuring all unreleased songs from his vast songwriting archives.

MRC Owner and A&R director Andrew McNeice has been given the responsibility of archiving Van’s songwriting demos from the 70s, right up until the last songs he wrote.

Over 12 months of work behind the scenes will come to fruition November 25, with the first two releases from the Van Stephenson Archives.

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The second title to be announced is also due for release November 25.

Van Stephenson – ‘Van’s Versions’, a 2CD compilation of songs written or co-written by Van and previously recorded and released elsewhere.

The songs are all cultivated from Van’s unreleased archives and feature songs written by him alone plus other songs co-written with his writing partners Sam Lorber, Jeff Silbar, Dave Robbins, Jan Buckingham, Phil Brown, Tim DuBois, Bob Farrell and more.

McNeice comments: “The idea for this compilation came while I was slowly going through all of Van’s demo archives. It is already clear just what an amazing writer and vocalist Van was, but I was pleasantly surprised with just how many tracks there are of Van’s that other artists had recorded. When you have the likes of Eric Clapton, Laura Branigan, Kenny Rogers, Dan Seals, Juice Newton and Restless Heart picking your songs to record, then you must appreciate just how good those songs are and the importance of highlighting them.

Van’s vast archives included his own original demo versions of many of these songs and it was so good to hear Van’s voice driving songs you might already know.

The need for ‘Van’s Versions’ became clear. I thought a nice idea would be to put all these songs into one compilation, which turned into a 41 song, double CD set.

The set features the varied musical styles Van wrote for over the years, including Pop, AOR, Rock, Midwestern & Country.

Included among the songs are some original demo versions Van recorded himself for his two MCA albums, giving further insight into Van’s writing and recording process.

It also allows space for the upcoming box sets to feature exclusively unreleased material, which is something I know a lot of people are looking forward to hearing.”

To complete the package, artwork from French graphic artist Arnaud Leger has been specially commissioned, plus the audio for both discs has been carefully restored and remastered by acclaimed producer JK Northrup.

Pre-orders will be available from next Monday and the complete track listing for ‘Van’s Versions’ (and the artist that recorded the songs) are as follows:

Disc One:

01. Set The Night On Fire (Vocal Demo) Recorded by OAK (1980)

02. Catch The Next Dream Recorded by THE NITTY GRITTY DIRT BAND (1980)

03. Undivided Love Recorded by EDDY ARNOLD (1980)

04. Bad Enough Recorded by KENNY ROGERS (1983)

05. Til I Loved You Recorded by GLENN SHORROCK (1983), JUICE NEWTON (1984) & RESTLESS HEART (1985)

06. If The Fall Don’t Get You Recorded by JANIE FRICKE (1982) & ANNE GRETE (1984)

07. All My Life Recorded by KENNY ROGERS (1983) & PETULA CLARK (1988)

08. Everybody’s Dream Girl Recorded by DAN SEALS (1983)

09. You’ve Got A Good Love Coming (Original Demo) Recorded by LEE GREENWOOD (1983), CONWAY TWITTY (1984) & BOB CLAYTON (1989)

10. Others Only Dream (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

11. What The Big Girls Do (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

12. The Cure Will Kill You (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

13. Modern Day Delilah (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

14. I Know Who You Are, I Saw What You Did (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

15. You’ve Been Lied To Before (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

16. Righteous Anger (Original Demo) From the Solo Album RIGHTEOUS ANGER (1984)

17. It’s Not Me, It’s Not You Recorded by KBC BAND (1986)

18. Back To The Heartbreak Kid Recorded by KATHY MATTEA (1984)

19. She Danced Her Way Into My Heart Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1985)

20. (You Don’t Hear) The One That Gets You Recorded by JUICE NEWTON (1984)

21. Restless Heart Recorded by JUICE NEWTON (1984) & RESTLESS HEART (1985)

22. Dancing With Danger (Original Demo) From the Solo Album SUSPICIOUS HEART (1986)

Disc Two:

01. Suspicious Heart (Original Demo) From the Solo Album SUSPICIOUS HEART (1986)

02. South December Road Recorded by GARY MORRIS (1985)

03. Grand Illusion Recorded by ERIC CLAPTON (1986) & DONNY OSMOND (1988)

04. Jenny Come Back Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1988)

05. Never In A Million Years Recorded by LAURA BRANIGAN (1990) & VICKI SHEPARD (1991)

06. It Happens All The Time Recorded by ANNE MURRAY (1987)

07. Calm Before The Storm Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1988)

08. House Of Fire Recorded by LITTLE BOB (1989)

09. Big Dreams In A Small Town Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1988)

10. Bluest Eyes In Texas Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1988)

11. When Pink Turns To Blue Recorded by FIONA (1989)

12. Nature Of Love Recorded by POCO (1989)

13. I’ve Never Been So Sure Recorded by RESTLESS HEART (1990)

14. Get Used To It Recorded by GIANT (1992)

15. It Ain’t About Love Anymore (Vocal Demo) Recorded by BLACKHAWK (1997)

16. If That Was A Lie (Acoustic Demo) Recorded by BLACKHAWK (1997)

17. All The Time In The World (Vocal Demo) Recorded by BOYZONE (1998)

18. Think Again (Vocal Demo) Recorded by BLACKHAWK (1998)

19. Ships Of Heaven (Acoustic Demo) Recorded by BLACKHAWK (2000) & VAN STEPHENSON (2000)

It’s my great pleasure to deliver one advance track from the compilation for your enjoyment today. Please enjoy ‘Back To The Heartbreak Kid’, as previously recorded by Kathy Mattea.