Greatest Hits (the A&M years '87 - '94)


1999, October 27, A&M

CD. 540929

Memphis in the meantime

(From Bring The Family)

3:59 30 seconds preview

Perfectly good guitar

(from perfectly good guitar)

4:40 30 seconds preview

Thing called love

(From Bring The Family)

4:11 30 seconds preview
4 Slow turning

(From Slow Turning)

3:38 30 seconds preview

Real fine love

(from stolen moments)

4:21 30 seconds preview

through your hands

(from stolen moments)

4:46 30 seconds preview
7 Buffalo river home

(from perfectly good guitar)

5:13 30 seconds preview
8 Feels like rain

(From Slow Turning)

4:52 30 seconds preview

Tennessee plates

(From Slow Turning)

2:58 30 seconds preview
10 thank you girl

(From Bring The Family)

4:09 30 seconds preview

drive south

(From Slow Turning)

3:53 30 seconds preview

lipstick sunset

(From Bring The Family)

4:15 30 seconds preview

child of the wild blue yonder

(from stolen moments)

4:27 30 seconds preview

paper thin

(From Slow Turning)

3:36 30 seconds preview

the rest of the dream

(from stolen moments)

4:53 30 seconds preview
16 Have a little faith in me

(From Bring The Family)

4:04 30 seconds preview

something wild

(from perfectly good guitar)

4:33 30 seconds preview
18 angel eyes - live

(from comes alive at Budokan?)

5:08 30 seconds preview

Total running time:



compilation Produced: bill leveson
production coordination:

jeff dean

mike ragogna

beth stempel

margaret goldfarb

art direction: vartan

t42 design


robert frank, steven M martin

A&M records archives


  • All songs written by John Hiatt except "tennessee plates"written by john hiatt and mike porter and "angel eyes" written by john hiatt and fred koller.


liner notes

I HAVE FANTASIES LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE. And in my perfect fantasy world, john Hiatt wins lots of Grammys and People's Choice Awards (edging out Marshall Crenshaw, marti Jones and Lyle Lovett), and he hits the top of the sales charts (competing for that spot with Los Lobos, Nanci Griffith and Australia's Paul Kelly).
That's not too much to ask, is it? This collection is evidence that these fantasies deserve to be fulfilled. To categorize John Hiatt as one of the great songwriters of the last twenty years is a well earned compliment and a significant oversight, all at the same time.
True, Hiatt has written some amazing songs. He has painted richly detailed characters whose actions and adventures have made us laugh ("Perfectly Good Guitar," "Memphis in the Meantime," "Tennessee Plates"). He has offered his insights and observations on each of us ("Child of The Wild Blue Yonder," "Paper Thin," "Buffalo River Home"). And he has allowed us to share in his most personal thoughts and relationships ("Thank You Girl," "Have A Little Faith In Me," "Real Fine Love").
However, to sum up John Hiatt as just a great songwriter, is to overlook his enormous talents as a singer, a live performer and a band leader. His voice gives him the ability to deliver his lyrics with warmth and honesty. His on-stage persona is one of the most engaging and entertaining in the business. And one look at the musicians represented on these tracks will confirm Hiatt's ability to consistently attract the best talent to deliver his musical vision.
This collection traces the period of Hiatt's recording for A&M Records, starting with “Bring The Family” (1987) and continuing through his live album with the Guilty Dogs, “Hiatt Comes Alive At Budokan?” (1994). In between, he released “Slow Turning” (1988), “Stolen Moment”s (1990) and “Perfectly Good Guitar” (1993). These albums represent the finest work of John Hiatt's extensive career. A time when he was first discovered by a larger audience, received broad critical acclaim and enjoyed widespread radio airplay. In short, it's the really good stuff. That makes this collection the best of the best.

"And the Grammy goes to..."


Two months after Capitol's The Best of John Hiatt 1973-1998 hit the stores, A&M released Greatest Hits: The A&M Years '87-'94. It's hard to surmise what weird licensing agreements led to this release pattern, since the similarities will cause confusion even among dedicated fans, but there are notable differences between the two discs. Since Hiatt's albums for A&M in the late '80s were his creative peak, it's not surprising that Greatest Hits, which concentrates his A&M work, is a more consistent album than The Best of John Hiatt, which balances classic A&M cuts with two re-recorded songs, highlights from his two Capitol albums, and two new songs. Aside from the inexplicable omission of "Slow Turning" and one of his best rockers, Greatest Hits contains all the A&M songs that are on The Best of John Hiatt ("Thing Called Love," "Memphis in the Meantime," "Child of the Wild Blue Yonder," "Drive South," "Buffalo River Home," "Feels Like Rain," "Perfectly Good Guitar," "Tennessee Plates"), plus the original versions of "Drive South" and "Have a Little Faith in Me" (only available in butchered remakes on the Capitol disc), a live take of "Angel Eyes," and several fine numbers, such as "Thank You Girl," "Real Fine Love," "Paper Thin," "Lipstick Sunset," and "Through Your Hands." There are some excellent songs from Bring the Family and Slow Turning missing, but Greatest Hits remains the compilation to get for casual fans.