It's possible I'm wrong about this, but I believe that gold cd-r's are actually the best (like Kodak) because they are the most reflective. Therefore a cd reader has an easier time differentiating between the "pits" and "lands." This is probably true of the darker cd-r's as well.
Did you close the CD after burning it? Most regular music CD players require a closed CD. There should be a "close CD" option somewhere in your CD-writing software. Just a word of warning though, once a CD is closed, you can no longer write to it.
You may also try (assuming you haven't already) creating the CD all at once. Some older CD players don't recognize multi-session CD's.