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Re: Name a band you started with ‘greatest hits’, but ended up getting most if not all their albums

As a teen I bought greatest hits lp’s because cash was tight …but I wanted to sample the band. Or I didn’t think I liked the band THAT much… but eventually realized I indeed wanted to go all in.

For me, I initially bought ‘best of blondie’ and squeeze ‘singles 45s and under’. Eventually I grabbed all their lp’s (save ‘the hunter’!).

Can you think of a band you started with greatest hits… but then kept going? Or a band where ‘greatest hits’ was all you needed?!?
When I was about 13, I did a lot of purchasing from the $4.99 cassette bin at my local mall. I'd heard Roxy Music's "Love Is the Drug" on classic rock radio, so I took a chance on their greatest hits album (covering the first album to SIREN.) I was hooked, although it took me a while to buy any more Roxy albums (and oddly, several Eno solo albums turned up in that bargain tape bin!)
Elton John and Roxy Music come immediately to mind for me. I soon became a completist on Roxy. Not Elton, though; his albums after the mid-Seventies are very hit-or-miss ... mostly miss. Too Low for Zero (1983), Songs from the West Coast (2001) and his collaboration with Leon Russell, The Union (2010) are the only consistently high-quality ones after his peak Seventies run.

The Buzzcocks. Critics have long described Singles Going Steady as a classic in itself. But really, how can any fan fall for that compilation, and not want to hear more of their music? Another band I became a completist about.

The Beatles. I started with the red album and the blue album, and worked my way from there.

Zoo's post reminded me: Snap! and Standing on a Beach were the gateways that led me to become completist about The Jam and nearly completist about The Cure.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2021 01:56PM by Delvin.
Téléphone. Then again, the individual albums were very hard to find in North America, but I eventually bought them all during trips in France.

Siouxsie and the Banshees - almost, as I owned Kaleidoscope, but the greatest hits (Twice Upon a Time) covered the period after that. I can now boast of having the full collection of her albums, after getting the final missing one a couple of years ago.

Magazine I got introduced to via Play, a live album that acted as a greatest hits at the time. I quickly went on a mission to find all the albums, including the Greatest Hits (After the Fire), which turned out to be redundant once I found the last of the missing albums (Correct Use of Soap).
Steevee, I’ve NEVER heard Roxy Music on a classic rock station. You were lucky. I too started out with the greatest hits album… I’d been READING about them forever without hearing them.

My reaction at first hearing ‘love is the drug’? These guys sound just like Duran Duran!!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2021 08:21PM by Bip.
Well, I bought Roxy's greatest hits album shortly after AVALON's release, but I didn't hear that album on the radio or have any idea that the band had only recently broken up.
Greatest hits are all I need:
- Queen (the original one from the early '80s that included "Under Pressure")

Bought the greatest hits then went further, either at or around the time of release or years later:
- The Cure (Staring at the Sea)
- Split Enz (History Never Repeats)
- The Jam (Greatest Hits)
- Elvis Costello (Best of...)
I had always been intimidated by Can until I picked up Anthology in the mid-90s and discovered they weren't so insurmountable and went ahead and picked up most of their albums in short order.

Once Upon a Time by Siouxsie and the Banshees was the first thing I had by them.

I'd made do with a Red Lorry Yellow Lorry comp for years until I recently got a box set collecting all their albums and b-sides.

For a long time, the self-titled Japan comp that was released in the U.S. was the only thing I had by those worthies, until the CD era made their actual albums easier to find in my neck of the woods than they'd ever been in the first vinyl era.

This one probably doesn't count but Dark Adapted Eye was (and still is) the only relatively accessible and inexpensive source for Danielle Dax's 80s output, but I've since managed to get everything else - the caveat being it was via other compilations. Still don't have any of her actual albums beyond her lackluster swan song, Blast the Human Flower.
This is largely just repeating some that others have mentioned:

Snap! - The Jam
Singles Going Steady - Buzzcocks
Single 45s and Under - Squeeze
Basher - Nick Lowe

Others, I'm sure that aren't springing immediately to mind.
A lot of mine have been mentioned but there are several multi band comps that sent me scrambling to the record stores for more. Hands down number one for me was Tyranny of the Beat - a mix of all kinds of stuff. Can, SPK, Throbbing Gristle, Cabaret Voltaire, a crooning Nick Cave on the excellent tune Shivers and many others. I mean it just blew me away. That single purchase of $14.99 in 1991 cost me probably thousands over the years between discovering all of the bands music and various off shoots. Also led me to Soleilmoon Records, I have bought so many weird items from them over the years. When people look through my collection I do get a lot of raised eyebrows to say the least.

I know it does not fit on TP but myself and no one in my family listened to the Grateful Dead while growing up. I mean I had heard Casey Jones obviously but a college crush of mine had the Skeletons from the Closet cassette in her car. Damn if I did not get hooked on every song. I now love the Dead and listen to them all of the time.
Surviving Birthday Party/Boys Next Door members seem to really hate their early output but I dig all of Door Door.
Oddly, the only one I can think of is Queen. (Like Zoo, it was the one that came out in the early 80s.)

I've been thinking about this question since it was posted, and I've realized that (a) most of my greatest hits albums are from the classic rock, soul and 60s-80s pop eras, and (b) I tend to buy greatest hits records more because it's an act I already know I likely won't go deeper into (Tears For Fears, for example), or, like a lot of R&B acts, they were singles-oriented anyway. In the pre-streaming days, when I wanted to give a band a try, I'd read up on them (in the TP guides or the Rolling Stone Record Guide, usually, or online once the web was a thing) and figure out which album would be a good one to start with. Or I'd ask around - hence my question about OMD's albums.

There are plenty of bands where I'm perfectly fine with the most well-known singles or album tracks. But if it's an artist I think deserves a deeper dive, I'd rather sample on of their Major Statements and see if it appeals. For example, my first Clash record was London Calling.

Then there's oddities like the Buzzcocks. I have the best-of CD Operators Manual AND a vinyl copy of Singles Going Steady, but I've never owned any of their original studio albums.
I can wholeheartedly endorse The Hurting as a great album worth owning in its entirety if you ever stumble across a cheap copy, but otherwise your life is not significantly poorer if you stick with a Tears For Fears best of. I like their albums, but the singles on everything after The Hurting so outclassed the deep cuts that I honestly can't think of what any said deep cuts sound like off the top of my head.

Likewise, I recommend A Different Kind of Tension as an album definitely worth owning, but Singles GS and Operator's Manual do a pretty good job of collecting everything essential from the first two Buzzcocks albums - not everything that's good, mind you, but everything that's essential.
I’ve never really thought of ‘Singles Going Steady’ as a greatest hits collection….though I suppose half of it kinda is. I LOVE the fact that it collected the b-sides; even if you eventually got the studio albums, you likely didn’t spring for those import singles.

upper90… funny how college crushes can take us down paths we’d normally never travel. The Dead are a group I would’ve at one time called the ANTITHESIS of everything I liked. Their virtues have slowly unfolded to me over the years to a point that I, like you, can really enjoy their records— no drugs required!!!
Exactly, I now own physical CD copies of about 15 albums but then on my streaming services I have the entire gamut covered. I also really like the Sirius channel 23. The Tales from the Golden Road cracks me up, people calling in and sharing show experiences. Also their concert from this day in the past is a really nice idea, always entertains.
Split Enz, Buzzcocks, Squeeze, Police, Roxy Music, are a few examples, although rarely do I have a complete catalogue. Most cases, I got the "greatest hits" CD, but found a variety of the back catalogue on LP and pulled them together over the course years during which used LPs were going for a dollar or two.
Some of those already mentioned apply, but a few others also quickly come to mind:

Thin Lizzy - Dedication
The Clean - Compilation
MC5 - Babes In Arms
Go-Betweens - Metal & Shells
Mekons - Original Sin
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