|Greatest hits album by|
|Released||August 17, 1992|
|Genre||Alternative rock, indie pop|
|Producer||Various (see main text)|
|The Smiths chronology|
U.S. cover of Best... I
Best... I is a compilation album by The Smiths. It was released in August, 1992 by the new owner of their back catalogue, WEA (Sire Records in the United States). Its highest British chart position was #1; it reached #139 on the U.S. charts.
WEA (now the Warner Music Group) had acquired the entire Smiths back catalogue in early 1992. Along with the re-release of all original albums and compilations, they immediately set to work compiling a 'best of' collection in two volumes. It was the first time a regular best of compilation had ever been made of The Smiths' material and the album effortlessly reached the top of the British charts. The British press had doubts about sell-out and low track selection coherence.
The material is more or less picked and sequenced at random, and consists of both singles and album cuts. It was followed later the same year by its sibling, ...Best II. The first spin-off single, a re-release of "This Charming Man", reached #8 in the singles chart, the highest position a Smiths single had ever reached. A second single promoting Best... I, an edited re-release of "How Soon Is Now?", got to #16 (the uncut version is featured on the compilation).
The UK and European release of the record featured the left half of a biker couple photograph by Dennis Hopper from 1961 entitled 'Biker Couple' on its sleeve, with ...Best II completing the picture; the U.S. sleeve was designed by singer Morrissey and features Richard Davalos, co-star of East of Eden.
- "This Charming Man" (Single A-side) – 2:43
- "William, It Was Really Nothing" (Single A-side) – 2:09
- "What Difference Does It Make?" (album version) (Single A-side) – 3:51
- "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" (Single A-side) – 3:34
- "Girlfriend in a Coma" (Single A-side) – 2:02
- "Half a Person" (B-side of "Shoplifters of the World Unite") – 3:36
- "Rubber Ring" (B-side of "The Boy with the Thorn in His Side") – 3:48
- "How Soon Is Now?" (full version) (Single A-side) – 6:46
- "Hand in Glove" (album version) (Single A-side) – 3:25
- "Shoplifters of the World Unite" (Single A-side) – 2:58
- "Sheila Take a Bow" (Single A-side) – 2:42
- "Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others" (From The Queen Is Dead) – 3:18
- "Panic" (Single A-side) – 2:20
- "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want" (B-side of "William, It Was Really Nothing") – 1:54
- Morrissey – vocals
- Johnny Marr – guitars, harmonica, mandolins on "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want"
- Andy Rourke – bass guitar
- Mike Joyce – drums
- Craig Gannon – rhythm guitar on "Half a Person" and "Panic"
- John Porter – slide guitar on "Sheila Take a Bow"
- Stephen Street – synthesized string arrangements on "Girlfriend in a Coma".
- John Porter – producer (A1-A3, B1, B6-B7)
- Johnny Marr, Morrissey and Street – producers (A4-A6, B4)
- Morissey and Marr – producers (A7, B5)
- The Smiths – producers (B2)
- Johnny Marr – producer (B3)
Certifications and sales