Van Dyke Parks Arrangements, Volume 1


Bananastan has released a compilation album featuring 15 of Van Dyke Parks' greatest arrangements, available on both CD and 180gm Vinyl.

Arrangements, Volume 1 contains 15 songs featuring various artists including (shown below, clockwise from top left): Ry Cooder with Van Dyke Parks, Bonnie Raitt, Lowell George, Dino Martin, Arlo Guthrie, Sal Valentino and Little Feat.

"The compilation is curated by Parks himself, drawing on what he calls 'my earliest studio adventures in the '60s.' The roster of collaborators represented here is dizzying — Little Feat, Arlo Guthrie, Sal Valentino, Bonnie Raitt singing calypso — and hearing Parks' unifying hand presiding over this collision of styles makes for a wonderful way to experience the art of his arrangements; their lushness, their invention, how they provide the texture and teeth to a composition.

"The songs selected on Arrangements are uniformly fantastic. Bonnie Raitt's cover of Calypso Rose's racy 'Wah She Go Do' is hilarious and startling, and Jimmy Cliff's 'Sitting in Limbo' gets an improbably gorgeous reading by Dean Martin's son Dino. But trying to imagine them without Parks' additions, as the compilation encourages you to, is illuminating.

"Arrangements is a joy to spend time with, but it also amounts to a pretty forceful argument for the lost art of arrangement itself, and for Parks as one of its unrivaled masters.."PitchforkRead the full review...

"Most of these tracks reflect the same grand, outsized personality that Parks brought to his solo work; Parks is a man in love with musical Americana, but he's even more fond of the way other cultures stretch and shape American ideas, and his dandified vision, full of snappy and textural percussion, playful keyboard fixtures, bold horns and woodwinds, and strings that dance and sway with the melodies, truly defines each of these selections, even more than the folks who sing them."All Music GuideRead the full review...