February 1976: Black Sabbath Release WE SOLD OUR SOUL FOR ROCK 'N' ROLL in America
The legend of Black Sabbath's first compilation album, We Sold Our Soul for Rock 'n' Roll, is that the band wasn't even aware of its existence until autograph-seeking fans thrust copies in their faces. Originally released in the UK in early December 1975, the double-LP collection of songs plucked from the Black Sabbath's first six studio albums officially landed in America on February 3, 1976.
Not exactly a greatest hits release, We Sold Our Soul for Rock 'n' Roll is a strong mix of tracks quickly put together by the NES label when they signed the band to release Sabotage in the UK. It opens with three tracks from the band's debut, Side B dominated with tunes from Paranoid, plus non-LP b-side, "Wicked Ways."
With the second LP a mix of songs from Vol. 4, Sabotage, Master of Reality, Paranoid and one last track from the debut (collection closer "N.I.B."), We Sold Our Soul for Rock 'n' Roll served as a Black Sabbath primer for a new and younger generation of rock fans just discovering the legendary hard rock band's music, going on to peak at #48 on the Billboard 200 for the week of April 11, 1976. The #1 album in America that week: Peter Frampton's Frampton Comes Alive!