Aerosmith – Big Ones

Big Ones, indeed.

I don’t know how many Best Of or Greatest hits compilations Aerosmith has, but it’s got to be a metric shit-ton, by this point. Way more than they have studio albums, by now, certainly? I’ve never counted but it feels like a reasonable guess. And they’ve been going almost as long as I’ve been alive. It’s scary.

In a way, this is cool. Aerosmith is definitely a band known for its hits. And the hits are monstrously huge. Radio inundates us with songs we’ve heard a million times over, rarely bouncing a deep cut off of us, just for the thrill of it. Fans will listen to the albums, the rest of humanity can sing along with Rag Doll whether they know all the words or not.

In another way, it’s all a bit insulting. How many of these goddamn compilations are fans expected to buy? And is there value for the money in the (seemingly) endless slew of discs that drops onto the market, at this point? I suppose it’s some new geek behind a desk at the label who’s sure that THIS or THAT compilation will be the Ultimate Aerosmith statement… only to be replaced six months later by another new young turk who says the last guy was an idiot and THIS will be the Ultimate statement… and so on… ad nauseum… Also, whomever’s making these choices (as if anyone cares), Steve Tyler needs another Lamborghini, so make sure you step up and drop your hard-earned.

It would be an interesting survey (Lebrain, maybe you can help) to compile a complete list of these Hits Of Aerosmith discs. I can’t be arsed to do it myself, but I’d love to know just how many there are…

Anyway, here we have Big Ones, and it’s a doozy. You know this, because you probably own it. I’m likely preaching to the choir, here. It’s everything the casual fan would ever (likely) want to hear from Aerosmith (for its time period). Yes, fans will say “but they forgot THIS AND THIS AND THIS TRACK, and they should have at least used the live version of THAT TRACK…” and so on, but generally speaking if even a noob in 1994 had to put together a 1-CD Hits set from this band’s more recent (80s+) output, the track list on this one would be a pretty fair guess.

Am I a fan, to be ranting like this? A fair question. I’m not hard-core. I own a few albums (and would like to have more, especially the earlier stuff). I like the band, and sometimes they’re the only ones that can scratch the itch. Do I think they are America’s answer to the Rolling Stones? Not since the late 70s (a period completely missed by this compilation), and even then only because there was no one else truly vying for the position. Besides, if you want the Stones, you should just listen to the fucking Stones. And am I a Stones fan? Oh hells yes.

Would I recommend this compilation to you? Sure. Why not? It’ll play everything you already know. I bought it for $2 and it pleases me enough to keep it. Will it be all you need, a complete set that means you don’t have to buy more albums (or more compilations)? Oh hells no.

Posted on 2014-07-06, in posts by aaron and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. I proudly own zero Aerosmith compilations.

    I don’t prefer them as a rule especially when I prefer entire albums.

    Like Rocks. Or Toys in the Attic. Or Pump. In fact only those 3. In fact all I ever will need to want to own. I’ve heard all of them, those are the only ones I really love. I’m funny that way. all or nothing. Sick as a Dog, whats your story? 😉


    • You have remarkable self-control. I thought everyone owned at least one Aero-comp. In fact, keep an eye on your collection. They seem to breed like rabbits, in the stacks…


  2. Haha I paid a lot more than $2 for Big Ones back in 94!
    Totally agree with the how many greatest hits sets are released by these guys & Kiss.
    Big Ones I bought for the the two new tracks they slapped on which seemed to be the trend back than.
    Ironically enough my first two Aerosmith albums that I had purchased yrs ago where Live Bootleg and the original Greatest Hits (red cover from 1980) so there ya go! Greatest Hits & Big Ones are the only two Aero comps I own even to this day.
    Kudos to DaddyDinoRawk he basically nailed it with those Three Aero classics which would be my three and even Nine Lives coming in at a close #4. Better off listening to the real deals(full original albums ) than some record company Buffon picking tracks for yet another Aero Compilation.


    • I have that red-covered hits set too, though it’s a little scratchy and I want to replace it.

      No love for Permanent Vacation? I know there’s a bit of filler on there, to some, but lots of big songs too. Interesting!


      • Some love, its about half good. Same as all the others I can’t remember what the songs sound like later on. Like Nine Lives as mentioned. I have to actually listen to them to remember what they sound like. I do like a track on Done With Mirrors called The Reason A Dog. That stuck with me. Girl Keeps Coming Apart. I like that one, of course ST throws a Zappa couplet in there doesn’t hurt it at all. Otherwise I’ll just stick with my 3.


      • I’m loving all of this input. When it comes to a band with as many albums as Aero has, all of this information is good to know. Thanks!


  3. yeah PV was a great comeback album. It’s hard to choose though I mean I also really like Done With Mirrors,Rock In A Hard Place even parts of Get A Grip.
    With Get a Grip though i caught that tour 3 weeks in and they opened the show with the first three tracks off of Get A Grip(Eat The Rich,Get A Grip & Fever) it was like here take it …..u got no choice plus that record has one of my favourite all time favourites Livin On The Edge!
    Good vast catalogue though…..


    • Get A Grip also has great moments (and a bit of fat – don’t we all, hahaha). You’re fortunate to have seen that tour.

      Also you’re totally right, there were new tracks on that one. I’d forgotten that was the case, this damn thing’s been around so long. Good call, nice one Deke!

      And speaking of vast catalogue, I’ve got another post that oughta help.


  4. Only Aero-comps I have are the red one and Gems. Unless Pandora’s Box counts as a comp? I’m not generally a fan of compilations, I tend to stick to albums.


  5. Esp on Live Bootleg where they included a boot of there own recorded from 1973, two songs one called I ain’t got you and Mother Popcorn …Aero at its earliest live incarnation….
    Check it out…..
    Man I gotta dig this out now!
    (Seems I have been saying that lots lately !)


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