Columbia Records to Release Deluxe Expanded Edition of Neil Diamond’s Critically-Acclaimed ’12 Songs’
Columbia Records will release a deluxe 2- CD digi-pak edition of Neil Diamond’s critically-acclaimed “12 Songs” on Tuesday, December 12.
Disc One of the newly-expanded edition of “12 Songs” includes the original version of Neil’s heralded album in its entirety plus two bonus tracks — “Men Are So Easy” and “Delirious Love” (with Brian Wilson) — originally available only in a limited first edition of the album released in November 2005.
The deluxe edition of “12 Songs” includes an exclusive limited edition second disc, “Artist’s Cut – 12 Sketches,” which offers Diamond fans, for the first time, a rare look into Neil’s creative process through never-before- heard demos, as well as early and alternate takes of all of “12 Songs.” As an added bonus, Disc Two of “12 Songs” premieres an alternate mix of “Men Are So Easy.”
“Since the mid-1960s, Neil Diamond has been making some of the purest, most honest, and most heartfelt music in the world,” said Steve Barnett, Chairman, Columbia Records. “The fact that his most recent album, ’12 Songs,’ is also one of his most celebrated and most successful is proof that the music, and the genius, of Neil Diamond is forever. This new edition of ’12 Songs’ will give fans a chance to rediscover the magic of a modern classic album while enjoying a wealth of demos and other rare material associated with this masterpiece.”
Originally released on November 8, 2005, “12 Songs” entered the Billboard 200 best-selling album chart at #4, making it Neil’s first-ever album to debut in the Top 10 and first album to chart in the Top 10 in more than a decade. Upon its release, “12 Songs” achieved best first week’s sales of the artist’s career.
“12 Songs” paired the pop music icon with legendary producer Rick Rubin, for whom producing a Neil Diamond album had been a long-time goal. Rubin’s extraordinary resume spans the history of hip-hop from LL Cool J to Jay Z, the world of hardcore rock from Slayer to System Of A Down, and the pantheon of mythic stars from Tom Petty and Donovan to Mick Jagger and Johnny Cash’s immortal Grammy-winning American Recordings series.
A core group of musicians made up of Mike Campbell (guitar) and Benmont Tench (piano/organ) (both from Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers) and guitarist Smokey Hormel (Beck, Tom Waits) and others including the renowned Larry Knechtel (piano) and the late Billy Preston (organ) performed on “12 Songs.”
“12 Songs” is the 14th Neil Diamond album to reach the Top 10, the 20th to hit Top 20, the 31st to make Top 50 and the 45th to break into the Billboard Top 200, placing the artist at #6 on the all-time list of male vocalists with the most Top 200 albums (after Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Johnny Mathis, James Brown, and Willie Nelson).
The original version of “12 Songs” will be streamed on Neil’s website (http://www.neildiamond.com/) beginning Wednesday, November 1. Four Grammy- eligible tracks from the original album — “Hell Yeah,” “Delirious Love” (with Brian Wilson), “Man of God” and “Evermore” — may be heard on Neil’s MySpace page (http://www.myspace.com/neildiamond).