Van Morrison / Astral Weeks expanded and other news


There has been a fair bit of Van Morrison activity in the past week, with the news that Sony’s Legacy Recordings has acquired the rights to much of the man’s back catalogue and also that 1968’s Astral Weeks and 1970’s His Band and the Street Choir (both still owned by Warners and not part of the Sony deal) will be reissued and expanded by Rhino in October.

Rhino put out a reissue of Moondance back in 2013 in quite some style, with a top-of-the-range 4CD+blu-ray set and a two-CD deluxe. The new expanded editions of the albums that originally sandwiched 1969’s Moondance are more modest affairs since they will be single disc reissues. You will still get remastered audio of course and each album will also feature previously unreleased versions of several album tracks.

In terms of the other news, Sony will now get to work planning their own Van Morrison reissue campaign having acquired “more than 50 years of music”. They now have the rights to the early Them albums (and compilations) and more or less all the solo work from 1972’s Saint Dominic’s Preview onwards

In fact, Sony have specifically said that deluxe Legacy Editions of Saint Dominic’s Preview, It’s Too Late to Stop Now, Hard Nose the Highway and Enlightenment are part of their plans, as well as a new career-spanning single CD compilation. But for now they are kicking things off with a double-disc set The Essential Van Morrison.

The Essential Van Morrison is out now, while Astral Weeks and His Band and the Street Choir will be reissued on 30 October 2015.



Astral Weeks expanded and remastered


His Band and the Street Choir remastered and expanded


The Essential Van Morrison


Track Listing
1. “Astral Weeks”
2. “Beside You”
3. “Sweet Thing”
4. “Cyprus Avenue”
5. “The Way Young Lovers Do”
6. “Madame George”
7. “Ballerina”
8. “Slim Slow Slider”
Bonus Tracks – Previously Unreleased
9. “Beside You” (Take 1)
10. “Madame George” (Take 4)
11. “Ballerina” (Long Version)
12. “Slim Slow Slider” (Long Version)

Track Listing
1. “Domino”
2. “Crazy Face”
3. “Give Me A Kiss”
4. “I’ve Been Working”
5. “Call Me Up In Dreamland”
6. “I’ll Be Your Lover, Too”
7. “Blue Money”
8. “Virgo Clowns”
9. “Gypsy Queen”
10. “Sweet Jannie”
11. “If I Ever Needed Someone”
12. “Street Choir”
Bonus Tracks – Previously Unreleased
13. “Call Me Up In Dreamland” (Take 10)
14. “Give Me A Kiss” (Take 3)
15. “Gypsy Queen” (Take 3)
16. “I’ve Been Working” (Alternate Version)
17. “I’ll Be Your Lover, Too” (Alternate Version)


Albums newly acquired by Legacy Recordings:


  • The Angry Young Them / Them (1965)
  • Them Again (1966)
  • Them featuring Van Morrison (compilation, 1972)
  • The Story of Them featuring Van Morrison (compilation, 1997)

Van Morrison

  • St. Dominic’s Preview (1972)
  • Hard Nose the Highway (1973)
  • It’s Too Late to Stop Now (Live) (1974)
  • Veedon Fleece (1974)
  • A Period of Transition (1977)
  • Wavelength (1978)
  • Into the Music (1979)
  • Common One (1980)
  • Beautiful Vision (1982)
  • Inarticulate Speech of the Heart (1983)
  • Live at the Grand Opera House, Belfast (Live) (1984)
  • A Sense of Wonder (1984)
  • No Guru, No Method, No Teacher (1984)
  • Poetic Champions Compose (1987)
  • Irish Heartbeat (w/the Chieftains) (1988)
  • Avalon Sunset (1989)
  • Enlightenment (1990)
  • Hymns to the Silence (1991)
  • Too Long in Exile (1993)
  • A Night in San Francisco (Live) (1994)
  • Days Like This (1995)
  • How Long Has This Been Going On? (1995)
  • Tell Me Something: The Songs of Mose Allison (1996)
  • The Healing Game (1997)
  • The Philosopher’s Stone (2CD outtakes compilation, 1998)
  • Back on Top (1999)
  • The Skiffle Sessions: Live in Belfast (Live) (2000)
  • Down the Road (2002)
  • What’s Wrong with This Picture? (2003)
  • Magic Time (2005)
  • Pay the Devil (2006)
  • Keep it Simple (2008)
  • Astral Weeks “Live at the Hollywood Bowl” (Live) (2009)

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