Music Review: The Platters’ ‘The Magic Touch—Anthology’

The Platters' The Magic Touch Anthology
‘The Magic Touch’ collects 50 gems from the Platters

The Magic Touch—Anthology, a 50-track two-CD set, contains enough material to satiate the appetite of even the most monomaniacal Platters fan. (That would be me.)

“Harbor Lights,” “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes,” “Red Sails in the Sunset,” “Only You,” “My Prayer,” “The Magic Touch,” “Twilight Time” and “The Great Pretender” are here, along with assorted minor hits, album cuts, and B sides. The only Platters chart record not included is “With This Ring,” the result of the group’s brief comeback attempt in the late ’60s. (No doubt licensing presented problems.)

The voice of singer Tony Williams, who is featured prominently throughout, is tremendous. And the Platters prove more diverse than their similarly styled single hits would indicate. Those songs still sound magnificent, but the Platters were just as good when they laughed at their romantic balladry. Listen, for example, to their tongue-in-cheek reading of the Spaniels’ “Goodnight, Sweetheart.”

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