Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Ultimate Silver Collection
Genres: World Music, Pop, R&B, Rock, Classic Rock, Broadway & Vocalists
The best from Dusty's heyday
R. Bourbeau | Maui, Hawaii, USA | 08/30/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although we lost the former Mary Catherine O'Brien of London in 1999 after a long battle with cancer, Dusty Springfield's legacy as one of pop music's most soulful voices will live on, thanks to compilations like Dusty's exquisite Ultimate Silver Collection. It contains 24 of Springfield's most recognizable hits, recorded between 1963 and 1970, beginning with "I Only Want to Be With You," released in the U.K. in late '63 and in the U.S. in early '64, becoming her first American Top 15 hit. Dusty would then go on to become one of Britain's most successful solo female vocalists on the American charts, along with the likes of Petula Clark, Lulu, and so-called "James Bond Theme Queen" Shirley Bassey.
Her affinity with certain songwriters is evident here, especially Burt Bacharach and Hal David. For B&D, she would become to the U.K. what Dionne Warwick was to the U.S.; in fact, they often recorded and released the same songs at the same time, a point of irritation mentioned by Warwick on more than one occasion. Warwick often felt that Bacharach and David were exclusive to her; apparently, they weren't. "The Look of Love" and "Anyone Who Had a Heart" are two of those such songs, along with "24 Hours from Tulsa," "I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself," and her mega-smash "Wishin' and Hopin'," which still today is featured on several U.S. TV commercials.
"Just One Smile" is an early composition by Randy Newman, who of late has received literally fistfuls of Academy Award nominations for his film scores--and finally, in 2002, an actual win of the Oscar (for "If I Didn't Have You" from the Pixar animated film "Monsters, Inc.")! He's probably best known for his '70s and '80s tongue-in-cheek hits "Short People" and "I Love L.A."
One of Dusty's biggest hits, included here, is the funky "Son of a Preacher Man," along with Motown composers Gamble-Bell-Butler's "A Brand New Me." "How Can I Be Sure?" is an exquisitely beautiful cover of the U.S. hit by The Rascals.
In the mid-'60s she experimented with international songwriters, including French songwriting legend Jacques Brel's composition "Ne Me Quitte Pas" (literally translated to "Do Not Leave Me"), which, when combined with American poet Rod McKuen's English lyrics, became the smash "If You Go Away." Also, an Italian melody had English lyrics added, and the international hit "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me," one of the biggest hits of Springfield's career (and this writer's personal all-time favorite), was born. One of her later hits, "Am I the Same Girl?" from 1969, was covered by the Manchester, England-based group Swing Out Sister in 1992 and was a #1 adult-contemporary chart hit in the U.S.
Although this release doesn't include her later hits, such as "What Have I Done to Deserve This?," a duet with The Pet Shop Boys that hit #2 on the U.S. pop charts, and "Something in Your Eyes," a duet with Richard Carpenter (who with his late sister Karen were the duo The Carpenters)--which both hit the charts in 1988--it's a great compilation that pays homage to her biggest hits and most prolific years. It's a superb nod to the career of a singular artist who is very much missed.
2006 UPDATE: If you happen to be in New York City as of the fall of 2006, do yourself a favor and see the Broadway musical "SHOUT! A Mod Musical." With the title taken from the 1964 Britain/U.S. cover hit by Lulu (and the Luvvers) of the Isley Brothers' classic, the musical features five young British female vocalists presenting a revue of the music of the great 1960s British pop songstresses, with Dusty well represented, and Lulu of course, Petula Clark, Cilla Black, Shirley Bassey, and many others. If you're a fan of the impact these ladies have had on American (and worldwide) music, go see this show!
2008 UPDATE: Hear Dusty come back to us again as her family gave Anne Murray permission to take the live lead vocal track from Dusty's recording of "I Just Fall in Love Again" off her 1978 album Living Without Your Love and combine it with Anne's vocal of the same song. The creation is a most dynamic and mesmerizing duet of "I Just Fall in Love Again" on Anne's brand-new hit CD, Anne Murray Duets: Friends & Legends (please read my review here at Amazon.com). Dusty released her version of the song as a single in the U.S. in early 1979 and Anne also released her version a bit later in the same year. Dusty's version sadly failed to chart, but Anne's went on to become one of the most successful hits of her career. Fans of both singers will be literally blown away by the fascinating, unique duet, as each singer has a distinct way of presenting the song, and yet Anne blends hers with Dusty's to make it an absolute work of art. Dusty and Anne were close friends off-stage, and the warmth that Anne is able to convey with Dusty's version comes through with every note. I highly recommend fans of either or both singers to get this new CD and hear Dusty, somehow back again with us in 2008. I literally cried when I first heard this track. I miss Dusty so much, and to hear her with Anne, singing together, created so much emotion in me that I was literally taken aback by how much hearing this track affected me [yeah, I can hear it now--ooh, little baby-girly man, crying because of a song--whatever! :-)]. While everyone will get his or her own impression of the song, if you enjoy either Anne or Dusty or both, I can guarantee you this: you won't regret getting Anne's new CD. That much I CAN promise you, if not for this track alone!
CD Rating: ***** (out of 5); third update from original review, 13 Mar 08--BOB BOURBEAU"
The White Goddess of Soul
Gary F. Taylor | Biloxi, MS USA | 01/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Nothing really anticipated Dusty Springfield. Born in 1939 in England, she was an attractive blue-eyed blonde who typically wore icy white gowns for concert appearances, a creature who seemed to combine Hollywood glamour and the girl-next-door in one delightful visual package... until she began to sing. There was no two ways about it. She sounded black.
At the time this made her a figure of considerable controversy. Black listeners were often surprised to discover that she was not black; white listeners were sometimes flatly shocked; and some accused her of deliberately imitating black vocalists for effect. But there was nothing false about Springfield's sound. She simply sounded the way the sounded and that was all there was to it, you could take it or leave it. And once people got used to it they took in a major way. Through the 1960s Dusty Springfield would generate one hit single after another in England, in America, and in Europe, becoming one of the best known and most widely admired singers of the decade.
Unfortunately, Springfield ran smack into a shift in popular taste that gradually eroded her career: with music by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, The Jefferson Airplane, and Janis Joplin making hits on the airwaves, she was increasingly overlooked by the music-buying public, and while her recordings continued to receive rave reviews they sold less well. By the early 1970s Springfield seemed to have run her course, was dealing with a host of emotional issues and addictions, and would not really return to public view until the late 1980s. Sadly, her resurgent popularity was short lived; she died of breast cancer at the age of 59.
Today she is widely acknowledged as one of the 20th Century's finest "soul" singers, and while this compilation focuses on her recordings from the 1960s it gives you a very good idea of what all the fuss was about. Early recordings like "I Only Want To Be With You" and "I Just Don't Know What To Do" show her at her pop-classic best--and had she done nothing more she would still be fondly recalled. But the real knock-outs began to occur when she turned to material that combined Motown and Wall Of Sound inflections with a jazz edge; recordings like "The Look of Love" and "Son of a Preacher Man" are simply jaw-dropping in their sophistication.
Springfield is one of those singers whose great gift is not so much in actual voice as it is in the way she sculpts it. A low and throaty alto, she doesn't have much in the way of range--but what she did with it was something special, combining a sexy sound with a unique mixture of powerhouse belts and falling vibratos. It's an amazing sort of thing, at once elegant and suggestive, silken and rough. To this day no one has quite managed to duplicate it or indeed anything like it. The quality of the recordings here are very good indeed, and if you want a solid overview of Springfield's earlier work you can't do better than The Ultimate Silver Collection. Strongly recommended.
GFT, Amazon Reviewer"
The Ultimate Ultimate!
Gary F. Taylor | 01/30/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"24 songs from Dusty is one of the best collections out there! (And there are plenty out there, thank goodness!) If you like Dusty sultry, sexy and sad, this is the one to buy! Not that it excludes her early rock hits like "I Only Want to Be With You" and "Stay Awhile;" however, this collection gives a good retrospective of all sides of Dusty.
Of course, it includes her Memphis-based songs like "Son of a Preacher Man" and "Windmills of Your Mind," because no "ultimate collection" would be complete without those classic songs. Some rock critics rate "Dusty in Memphis" as head of rock albums, with its smooth, creative arrangements and her subtle but driving vocals.
But what makes this collection so special is its inclusion of lesser known renditions like "If You Go Away," "Give Me Time," and "My Coloring Book." Dusty can break your heart with her plantitive whispering voice.
Highly recommended for all Dusty fans!"