Our online streaming service Hoopla allows you to check out 10 items a month. All the items in Hoopla are considered a single item. So a thirty-minute short film is considered the same one item as a four-hour long movie. It doesn’t matter if the audiobook is four hours long or forty hours long, it’s still one item. It works the same way with the music selections. It doesn’t matter if you’re listening to a short, 12-minute EP or a 10-hour long box set. It’s still considered one item. Because of this, I enjoy finding the music selections that are box sets and long. I’ve done some searching to find the music selections that I think give you the best bang for your buck for your download. Of course it’s all free so perhaps “best bang for your buck” isn’t the best phrase to use but the point is, if you download these titles you’ll be getting hours and hours of listening pleasure. If you dig deep into the Hoopla collection you’ll find some treasures of your own.
The Complete Hank Williams – Hank Williams (9 hours 24 minutes)
For one download you can listen to Hank Williams’ complete studio recordings! Hank Williams was arguably the greatest figure in the history of country and pop music in America. His impact and legacy are still felt today. So many of these songs have become staples in country music it’s hard to believe that Hank Williams wrote them all. If you already love Hank Williams or have been wanting to discover this legend of country music, this download is well worth the click!
Highlights: “Honky Tonk Blues”, “Lost Highway”, “Your Cheatin’ Heart”, “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”, “I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive”
Complete Studio Albums 1970-1978 – Black Sabbath (5 hours 29 minutes)
For one download you can listen to the first eight albums by Black Sabbath. These are the eight albums when Ozzy Osbourne was the vocalist for the band before Ronnie Dio took over in 1978. This is the classic period of Black Sabbath. The guitars are heavy and loud. The music is dark and slightly dangerous sounding. While the earlier Sabbath albums are perhaps better known, the later albums from this period are also great and well worth discovering.
Highlights: “Paranoid”, “Iron Man”, “Children of the Grave”, “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”, “Am I Going Insane”
The Complete Stax/Volt Soul Singles, Vol. 2: 1968-1971 (11 hours 10 minutes)
For some reason Vol. 1 of this box set is broken up into each individual CD, but Vol. 2 is all packed together and is considered a single download. So you get over 11 hours of vintage Stax/Volt Soul Singles. This is the point when Stax was starting to evolve it’s sound. At the beginning of this box set the house band is still pretty much Booker T and the MGs playing on every track. This is the great band that included Al Jackson on drums, Duck Dunn on bass, and Steve Cropper on guitar. By the end the tracks are more Isaac Hayes productions. When people think of Memphis they usually think of Sun Studios and Elvis, but Stax was the other great label in town.
Highlights: “What A Man”, “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of The Bay”, “Do The Funky Chicken”, “Mr. Big Stuff”, “Theme From “Shaft””
Def Jam Music Group 10th Anniversary Box Set (4 hours 15 minutes)
Def Jam is one of the most important labels in the history of Rap and Hip Hop music. This box set contains many of the tracks from what is now considered the “Golden Age of Hip Hop” in the 1980s. LL Cool J, The Beastie Boys, and Public Enemy are the stars of this box set but there are also a number of great tracks from some hip hop stars that you might have forgotten about like Slick Rick, EPMD, and 3rd Bass. This is hip hop back when samples were freely used from other songs. Because of copyright laws, most hip hop that is made today simply can’t sound like this.
Highlights: “Crossover”, “Going Back To Cali”, “Bring The Noize”, “Hip Hop Junkies”, “Fight The Power”, “Regulate”
The Anthology 1964-1971 – The Kinks (6 hours 15 minutes)
This recently released anthology of the Kinks is a must listen for any fan of the British Invasion. Because of visa problems, The Kinks didn’t tour the U.S. for most of the 1960s and because of this they never had the exposure in this country that The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Who had. Many critics now feel that the best of The Kinks work in the 1960s is the equal of most of those groups. Just like the Beatles, you can hear the group mature from a harder R&B based sound to their later sound that was more introspective and mature. Many of these songs have been remixed and remastered so they sound better than they’ve ever sounded before.
Highlights: “Sunny Afternoon”, “Waterloo Sunset”, “Autumn Almanac”, “Days”, “The Village Green Preservation Society”, “Victoria”, “This Time Tomorrow”
The Complete Ella Fitzgerald Song Books – Ella Fitzgerald (15 hours 31 minutes)
For just one download you can listen to over fifteen hours of arguably the greatest female vocalist in jazz history. The Complete Song Books contain all eight of the songbook collections that Ella Fitzgerald released over the years. Each songbook highlights a great American composer. Ella sings the songs of Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hart, Duke Ellington, Irving Berlin, George and Ira Gershwin, Harold Arlen, Jerome Kern, and Johnny Mercer. This is a collection of some of the greatest standards in American history, all sung by one of the greatest vocalists of all time. Sublime.
Highlights: “I Get A Kick Out Of You”, “You Do Something To Me”, “Night And Day”, “It’s Only A Paper Moon”, “They Can’t Take That Away From Me”