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Subject: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: ChuckyG on 05/31/11 at 2:27 pm

I think you have to take each song on a song by song basis.  I've been going through my favorites folder and trying to replace any tracks that are over 4 minutes with shorter versions, when it makes sense.  Sometimes when a long song has a single edit, the single edit is very chopped up or has abrupt starts/stops, etc.

So far in the 7 minute + range, these are the cases I found where I preferred the longer version of the song to the shorter single edit:


Who - Won't Get Fooled Again  - there's some butchered Greatest Hits versions I believe floating about
Don McLean - American Pie - shorter versions exist than the 8 minute album version, but they sacrifice lyrics
Joe Walsh - Life's Been Good - 4 minute version lacks the guitar solo in the middle
Barry White - Never, Never Gonna Give Ya Up - 8 minute version is better than 4,  the 4 has the intro cut and fades out too early.
Curtis Mayfield – (Don't Worry) If There's a Hell Below We're All Going to Go - Missing the spoken intro, abrupt start
Chicago - I'm a Man - rough intro, too short for 3:33 cut, 5:47 length cut is a "new edit"
Grandmaster Flash - Message - short version loses a ton of rap at the end about superman


Manfred Mann's Earth Band - Blinded By The Light - NOT SURE... this one I'm stuck on.  I think there's some lines cut, but they lyrics are kinda nonsensical anyways, so I have to listen with the lyrics in hand to see..

The Doors' "Light My Fire"... I much preferred the short (under 3 minute) mono single edit over the 7 minute opus that made it onto all the CD versions.  The stereo separation is distracting, much like other 60s stereo vs mono singles.  That's another discussion entirely though.

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: Paul on 05/31/11 at 3:01 pm

Chicago (or rather whoever was in charge of the razor blades at Columbia records) were experts at this, as almost every one of their early single releases was 'chopped' to satisfy radio stations in some way...

I gather The Eagles had a few of their songs 'snipped' too...most notably, 'Lyin' Eyes' which had a big chunk taken out of the middle, thereby spoiling the flow of the song...

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: Paul on 05/31/11 at 4:43 pm

Diana Ross's first big solo hit 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough' was originally issued as a six minute tour de force LP track...

Sadly, Motown saw fit to 'lose' half of it when issued as a single, wiping out a lot of its power...

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: whistledog on 05/31/11 at 7:44 pm

Not so much the long ones, but one that springs to mind is 'The Reflex' by Duran Duran.  the single edit has the fade in with the cowbell.  The album version does not

And speaking of Duran Duran, the album version (on the original Harvest US release) of 'Hungry Like the Wolf' is the Night Version, and completely blows the single version away.

The single edit of 'Chance' by Big Country is longer than the album version, and much better.

The single version of 'Bizarre Love Triangle' is the Extended dance mix.  The shorter album version is bland

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: nally on 08/11/15 at 10:38 am

In most cases, I prefer the album version; I don't like edits because often times they cut out a good part of the song.

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: Paul on 08/13/15 at 6:17 am

Strictly speaking, not an album version that was edited - just a hatchet job on a single...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jAD2oe1nTM

Done simply because US radio-programmers got very skittish when anything dared go over three minutes! Some labels simply bluffed it - 'You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'' by the Righteous Brothers is (and always will be) uncut, nearly four minutes in length, but the label claimed it was 3:05...

Subject: Re: Single Edit vs Album Version - is the album version better or the single?

Written By: Foo Bar on 08/16/15 at 6:05 am


I think you have to take each song on a song by song basis.  I've been going through my favorites folder and trying to replace any tracks that are over 4 minutes with shorter versions, when it makes sense.  Sometimes when a long song has a single edit, the single edit is very chopped up or has abrupt starts/stops, etc.

The scenario that starts at 4:00-7:25 in a song from 1973 is still a regular occurrence. The only thing that's changed in 42 years is you don't even have to be found guilty anymore. Stevie Wonder wasn't as blind as one might think.

So far in the 7 minute + range, these are the cases I found where I preferred the longer version of the song to the shorter single edit:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfbvm52G8fE

Stevie Wonder, Livin' For the City. The 7-minute version gets interesting at 3:45. As in, "Oh, instrumental break?" "Yeah, instrumental break." "So they do a verse without lyrics?" "Well, wait, what's happening at 4:00-4:15?" "Oh, right, that's when the DJ faded out of the track when I was a kid and I only had the last bit up to 4:30...  WTF? AAW HELL NAW. Is that the sample from Public Enemy's 'Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos?' (yes it is!) AND THERE'S A WHOLE VERSE THAT NEVER MADE IT TO RADIO?! TWO VERSES?!?!?"

His hair is long, his feet are hard and gritty,
He spends his life walking the streets of New York City,
He's almost dead, from breathing in air pollution,
He tried to vote, but to him there's no solution.1

Living just enough,
Just enough,
For the city.

I hope you hear, inside my voice of sorrow,
And that it motivates you to make a better tomorrow,
This place is cruel, nowhere could be much colder,
If we don't change, the world will soon be over...2

Living just enough,
Stop giving just enough,3
For the city.

1 http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/10/opinion/rikers-island-and-the-death-of-kalief-browder.html
2 http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/16/magazine/the-bail-trap.html
3 https://www.splcenter.org/news/2015/08/16/weve-lost-champion4
4 Hell of a coincidence, huh?

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