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* Compilation *

Recorded: 1955-1965

Released: 1982

Rating: 4.833 (average of 6 ratings)

Genre: early rock and roll

Quotable: “There have been more comprehensive collections of Berry’s work, but this is the best single disc.” – Bruce Eder, All Music Guide

Album Tracks:

  1. Maybellene
  2. Thirty Days
  3. You Can’t Catch Me
  4. Too Much Monkey Business
  5. Brown Eyed Handsome Man
  6. Roll Over Beethoven
  7. Havana Moon
  8. School Days
  9. Rock and Roll Music
  10. Oh Baby Doll
  11. Reelin’ and Rockin’
  12. Sweet Little Sixteen
  13. Johnny B. Goode
  14. Around and Around
  15. Carol
  16. Beautiful Delilah
  17. Memphis
  18. Sweet Little Rock & Roller
  19. Little Queenie
  20. Almost Grown
  21. Back in the U.S.A.
  22. Let It Rock
  23. Bye Bye Johnny
  24. I’m Talking About You
  25. Come On
  26. Nadine
  27. No Particular Place to Go
  28. I Want to Be Your Driver


sales in U.S. only --
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated --


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart --
peak on U.K. album chart --

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Maybellene (8/6/55) #1 RB, #5 US
  • Thirty Days (9/55) #2 RB
  • Too Much Monkey Business (2/56) #4 RB
  • Brown Eyed Handsome Man (2/56) #5 RB
  • Roll Over Beethoven (6/9/56) #2 RB, #29 US
  • School Days (4/6/57) #1 RB, #3 US, #24 UK
  • Oh Baby Doll (7/22/57) #12 RB, #57 US
  • Rock and Roll Music (11/11/57) #6 RB, #8 US
  • Sweet Little Sixteen (2/17/58) #1 RB, #2 US, #16 UK
  • Reelin’ and Rockin’ (2/17/58) #27 US, #18 UK
  • Johnny B. Goode (4/28/58) #2 RB, #8 US
  • Beautiful Delilah (7/18/58) #81 US
  • Carol (8/25/58) #9 RB, #18 US
  • Sweet Little Rock & Roller (11/10/58) #13 RB, #47 US
  • Almost Grown (3/30/59) #3 RB, #32 US
  • Little Queenie (3/30/59) #80 US
  • Back in the U.S.A. (6/22/59) #16 RB, #37 US
  • Let It Rock (2/1/60) #64 US, #6 UK
  • I’m Talking About You (1/61) --
  • Come On (8/61) --
  • Nadine (3/7/64) #23 RB, #23 US, #27 UK
  • No Particular Place to Go (5/7/64) #10 RB, #10 US, #3 UK
  • I Want to Be Your Driver (1/65) --

Notes: --


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more. One of Blender’s 100 Greatest American Albums One of Time Magazine’s All-TIME 100 Albums.

The Great Twenty-Eight
Chuck Berry
“Classic from rock’s founding father.” BL “Elvis may have been the King, but without Chuck Berry, the sounds of the Beatles, the Stones, Bob Dylan, and the Beach Boys would all have taken very different paths. Adapting Louis Jordan’s jump blues for electrified instruments, Berry created the definitive architecture for the rock and roll band, and shifted the spotlight to the guitar,” TL although there’s still room to “marvel at…Johnny Johnson’s piano finesse” BL and “Berry’s writing, which placed country-style storytelling in a youth-oriented context that perfectly captured the lives, thoughts, and dreams of baby-boomer teens.” TL

Originally, “The Great Twenty-Eight was a two-LP, single CD compilation that emerged during the early ‘80s, amid a brief period in which the Chess catalog was in the hands of the Sugar Hill label, a disco-oriented outfit that later lost the catalog to MCA. It has proved to be one of the most enduring of all compilations of Berry’s work. Up until the release of this disc, every attempt at a compilation had either been too sketchy (the 1964 Greatest Hits album on Chess) or too demanding for the casual listener (the three Golden Decade double-LP sets), and this was the first set to find a happy medium between convenience and thoroughness.” BE

“Veteran listeners will love this CD even if they learn little from it, while neophytes will want to play it to death. All of the cuts come from Berry’s first nine years in music, including all of the major singles” BE such as “Johnny B Goode to the slyly subversive Brown-Eyed Handsome Man to The Promised Land – in a better world, our true national anthem.” TL Also present are “relatively minor hits such as Come On (which was more significant in the history of rock & roll in its cover version performed by the Rolling Stones as their debut release).” BE

“In the decades since its release, there have been more comprehensive collections of Berry’s work, but this is the best single disc, if one can overlook the relatively lo-fi digital sound.” BE

Review Source(s):
  • BL Blender Magazine’s “100 Greatest American Albums” (10/08)
  • BE Bruce Eder, All Music Guide
  • TL Josh Tyrangiel and Alan Light, Time Magazine’s “All-TIME 100 Albums” (11/13/06)

Last updated February 16, 2010.