I have a Holy Grail search list, albums for which I’ve been looking so long that I’ve basically given up finding them. That said, on occasion I do find one, and it is a highlight of my music-collecting life. This 2004 UK compilation CD was on that list, and I recently found a reasonably-priced copy! In Sweden! And now it is here in my house and I am thrilled!
I’m a fan of Gowan’s from way back. As a kid, I had the Strange Animal cassette, and I got to see that tour here in the town where I now reside, probably 1985. I was hooked. Got the records all along, and saw him twice more live, over the years. And I’ve never really given up on him. I do need to get more into his Styx work… Anyway.
Suffice it to say, as a fan, this collectible was a major score for me. Thrilled, I said earlier. Oh yes, indeed.
It’s a pretty decent track selection, overall, weighing heavier on his later solo albums. Have a look at the track listing below, you’ll see what I mean. You know something, this guy has written a lot of great songs, and his voice is distinctive. One of a kind. I’ve been following his career since I was a kid of 10 or 11, and I still love listening to him today. A comp like this is a sure indicator of his avility and longevity.
This is a cool compilation of tracks because it doesn’t necessarily focus just on the hits (if it did, When There’s Time For Love would be period-correct and warrant a spot here, for example). I don’t always go for live tracks on a hits compilation, but I don’t even think this is a hits compilation. It’s just a neat collection, and it flows well enough (Make It Alone and Moonlight Desires sounds a bit dated next to the others, but whatever).
This CD is a tough find at a decent price, but if you can get your mitts on this comp, I would definitely recommend it. Of course, I would also recommend you own all of the albums. And just so you know, I still have my old Strange Animal cassette. How could I get rid of a touchstone?
One oddity: He thanks “Tinky-Winky, Dipsy, Lala and Po in the credits. Ooookay…
For Those Of You Who Care: Nowhere in the packaging for this CD (or on the internet, that I could find) does it list the original albums from which these songs were culled. So, I’ve done the work for you. With annotations. Because I love you. Aw go on, you know it…
a criminal mind (solo live) 
wild summer night 
lost brotherhood (solo live) 
I’ll be there in a minute 
soul’s road 
the good catches up 
laura (solo live) 
moonlight desires 
your stone walls 
guns and god 
you’ll be with me (solo live) 
make it alone *
healing waters **
Albums (with # of tracks included):
 1982 Gowan (1 track)*
 1985 Strange Animal (0)***
 1987 Great Dirty World (1 track)
 1990 Lost Brotherhood (0)***
 1993 …But You Can Call Me Larry (4 tracks)
 1995 The Good Catches Up (4 tracks)
 1997 Gowan au Quebec (solo live) (4 tracks)
* from , but UK disc says previously unreleased on CD (in UK, I guess)
** tribute to princess diana (officially unreleased – previous to this, I presume?)
*** no studio versions included, but live versions from  appear.