The Essential Harry Belafonte

The Essential Harry Belafonte
Harry Belafonte
Released Oct 4, 2005
Recorded 1952 - 1977
Genre Calypso
Label Legacy
Producer Bob Bollard, Frantz Casseus, Bill Eaton, Dennis Farnon, Hy Grill, Dave Kapp, Jack Pleis, Phil Ramone, Edward Welker, Andy Wiswell
Harry Belafonte chronology

Matilda, Matilda: Original Recordings 1949-1954
The Essential Harry Belafonte
The Original
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars [1]

The Essential Harry Belafonte is a two-disc compilation recording by Harry Belafonte, released in 2005 on the Legacy label.

The 37 tracks span Belafonte's career from 1952 to 1977, including his RCA Victor and Columbia Records releases. All selections for inclusion were made by Belafonte himself.

Allmusic stated: "Harry Belafonte's influence on pop music is much more far reaching then many realize, as he was one of the first performers to bring worldbeat rhythms to the U.S. charts in the postwar era... Innovative, intelligent, and unceasingly creative, Belafonte is long overdue for a critical reappraisal."

Track listing

  1. "Midnight Special" (Traditional) – 3:57
  2. "Island in the Sun" (Harry Belafonte, Lord Burgess) – 3:23
  3. "Zombie Jamboree (Back to Back)" – 3:20
  4. "Delia" (Brooks, Judson) – 3:39
  5. "Cocoanut Woman" (Belafonte, Burgess) – 3:22
  6. "Danny Boy [live]" (Weatherly) – 5:21
  7. "Jamaica Farewell" (Burgess) – 3:03
  8. "Turn the World Around" (Belafonte, Freedman) – 4:29
  9. "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" (Ewan MacColl) – 4:07
  10. "Cu Cu Ru Cu Cu Paloma" (Mendez) – 5:30
  11. "I'm Just a Country Boy" (Barer, Brooks) – 3:05
  12. "Venezuela" (Traditional) – 2:58
  13. "Hava Nageela" (Belafonte, Lorin) – 3:10
  14. "Scarlet Ribbons (For Her Hair)" (Danzig, Segal) – 2:46
  15. "Man Smart (Woman Smarter)" (Span) – 2:34
  16. "Shenandoah" (Public Domain) – 3:46
  17. "Angelina" (Irving Burgie) – 3:56
  18. "Matilda" (Thomas) – 3:13
  19. "Empty Chairs" (McLean) – 5:20
  20. "Jump in the Line (Shake, Senora)" (Belafonte, DeLeon, Oller) – 4:22
  21. "Jerry (This Timber Got to Roll)" (Public Domain) – 2:19
  22. "Waly Waly" (4:44
  23. "In That Great Gettin' Up Mornin'" (Belafonte, Luboff) – 3:18
  24. "Cotton Fields [live]" (Carter, Huddie Ledbetter) – 4:29
  25. "And I Love You So" (McLean) – 4:41
  26. "Those Three Are on My Mind " (Seeger, Taylor) – 3:47
  27. "Goin' Down Jordan" (Burgie, Woods) – 5:37
  28. "Abraham, Martin & John" (Dick Holler) – 4:22
  29. "On Top of Old Smokey" (Traditional) – 5:59
  30. "My Lord What a Mornin'" (Belafonte, Corman, Okun) – 4:29
  31. "Jump Down, Spin Around" (Attaway, Belafonte, Luboff) – 2:00
  32. "Mary's Boy Child" (Hairston) – 4:23
  33. "Mama Look a Boo Boo [live]" (Melody) – 5:18
  34. "(There's A) Hole in the Bucket" (Belafonte, Odetta) – 8:49
  35. "Take My Mother Home" (Johnson) – 5:55
  36. "Try to Remember" (Tom Jones, Harvey Schmidt) – 4:08
  37. "Day-O" (Banana Boat Song) (William Attaway, Belafonte) – 3:48


  • Harry Belafonte – vocals


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