Album Details

October 19, 1999
Pop/Rock, Singer/Songwriter, Soft Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, AM Pop, Contemporary Folk

Album Review

Harry Chapin was always a bit of a polarizing figure, attracting many dedicated fans but never earning much critical respect. Rhino's comprehensive three-disc box set Story of a Life doesn't really offer an opportunity for re-evaluation, nor does it even try to win over doubters. Instead, it tells a thorough history of Chapin's career, not missing a single hit or major song along the way. There are some rarities scattered throughout the set, mostly live tracks, but also the Chapin Brothers' 1966 single "Someone Keeps Calling My Name." However, the box shouldn't be seen as a treasure trove of unreleased material; instead, it's a journey through Chapin's career, providing an exhaustively detailed travelogue. Really, it contains too much material for anyone but the die-hard fan. But that's where Story of a Life is a success -- it's a loving tribute to Chapin, made with the cooperation of his estate and designed for his loving fans. It works quite well on that level, even if it's far too much for the average fan who just likes "Taxi" and "Cat's in the Cradle."
Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Taxi [Live]
  2. Someone Keeps Calling My Name [The Chapin Brothers]
  3. Could You Put Your Light on, Please
  4. Empty
  5. Greyhound
  6. Any Old Kind of Day
  7. Sunday Morning Sunshine
  8. Sniper
  9. Better Place to Be
  10. They Call Her Easy
  11. Mr. Tanner
  12. Mail Order Annie
  13. W.O.L.D.
  14. Old College Avenue
  15. Circle
  16. Short Stories
  17. Cat's in the Cradle
  18. I Wanna Learn a Love Song
  19. 30,000 Pounds of Bananas [Live]
  20. Shooting Star
  21. What Made America Famous?
  22. Vacancy
  23. Dreams Go By
  24. Tangled Up Puppet
  25. The Rock
  26. She Is Always Seventeen
  27. The Mayor of Candor Lied
  28. Caroline
  29. Laugh Man
  30. Taxi [Live]
  31. Corey's Coming
  32. If My Mary Were Here
  33. Dance Band on the Titanic
  34. Mismatch
  35. I Wonder What Happened to Him
  36. Dancing Boy
  37. Flowers Are Red [Live]
  38. Poor Damned Fool
  39. Jenny
  40. I Wonder What Would Happen to This World
  41. Old Folkie [Live]
  42. Remember When the Music (Reprise)
  43. God Babe, You've Been Good for Me
  44. Story of a Life
  45. November Rains
  46. Sequel
  47. Last Stand