Dusty Springfield's voice is one of the great pop instruments. Showcased here on 20 tracks from her '60s and early-'70s heyday, her sensuality and strength wrap themselves around everything from big-beat rock and roll li... more »ke "I Only Want to Be With You" and "Stay Awhile" to seductive masterworks like "Son of a Preacher Man" and "The Look of Love." Very Best ends with a vulnerable reading of the Carole King/Gerry Goffin taking-stock anthem "Goin' Back"--a rarity in the States, where it appeared only briefly. It's great to hear it here. --Rickey Wright« less
Dusty Springfield's voice is one of the great pop instruments. Showcased here on 20 tracks from her '60s and early-'70s heyday, her sensuality and strength wrap themselves around everything from big-beat rock and roll like "I Only Want to Be With You" and "Stay Awhile" to seductive masterworks like "Son of a Preacher Man" and "The Look of Love." Very Best ends with a vulnerable reading of the Carole King/Gerry Goffin taking-stock anthem "Goin' Back"--a rarity in the States, where it appeared only briefly. It's great to hear it here. --Rickey Wright
Peter Durward Harris | Leicester England | 10/11/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Many people think Dusty Springfield is Britain's finest-ever female pop singer and this compilation goes a long way to show why she has so many fans.While Dusty was less successful in America than in Britain, she had some notable American successes, occasionally having hits with songs that were not hits for her in Britain. However, this compilation is very strong - the track listing is not very different from what you would find on a typical British compilation, so this will appeal to all customers. Expatriate Brits living in America will find most of what they want here and may therefore not need to import a UK compilation at a premium price.The big international hits are here, of course, including I only want to be with you, I just don't know what to do with myself, You don't have to say you love me and Son of a preacher man, all of them huge hits in Britain and America. Stay awhile, All I see is you, Give me time and I'll try anything were also hits in both countries for Dusty, though not as big. Wishing and hoping, an American top ten hit for Dusty, is also included. It was not a UK hit for her - the Merseybeats had the UK hit.All cried out, What's it gonna be, The look of love and A brand new me were American hits that did not chart for Dusty in Britain. I close my eyes and count to ten, In the middle of nowhere, Some of your loving, Little by little and Going back were major British hits that failed to chart in America (the first two bubbled under) but they are great songs and it's good to see them included here. Losing you, another major British hit, made the American top 100, but did not climb very far, peaking at 91. Guess who failed to chart in either country though it bubbled under in America.One missing song that I might have expected to find here is Windmills of your mind, an American top forty hit. You can find it on Ultimate collection, along with some other songs not included here, including one track pre-dating her solo music and some later stuff. But if you just want her sixties solo music, this is the best American compilation out there, and it's just as good as any of the British compilations I've seen."
From Tenderness To Triumph, Dusty Did It All
Michael Daly | Wakefield, MA USA | 05/17/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The recent passing of Dusty Springfield spurred a recent surge of interest in her music. The surge is welcome, for more people can experience just how good a singer she was, such as in this compilation of 20 of her best.The album opens with what is unquestionably one of the best songs ever done by anyone, I Only Want To Be With You. Backed by Ivor Raymond's stellar orchestra, Dusty fires off an exhilarating number with power and excitement combined with tenderness - a mixture reminscent of her contemporaries, Mike Smith and Petula Clark.Wishin' and Hopin' downshifts to sly playfulness and displays her ability to segue from mood to mood, a knack further displayed in such disparate numbers as the bombastic You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, the flirty Son Of A Preacher Man, the desperate What's It Gonna Be, the steadfast Monty Norman-esque (listen for the distinctive James Bond riff throughout this number) classic All Cried Out (contemporary divas like Shania Twain and LeAnn Rimes can't come close to projecting the power Dusty displays here), and the Motown-flavored In The Middle Of Nowhere. Half the joy of these numbers is the sheer power of Ivor Raymond's orchestra, mixing rock 'n roll riffs with strings and horns seemingly more suited to a movie soundtrack. Sheer joy is the best description of this album."
One of The Greatest Pop Female Vocalists of All-Time
Michael Daly | 08/29/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"No one can hear the songs on this collection and remain untouched by the raw talent of Dusty Springfield. She left us much too soon, and only now since her passing is she finally getting the recognition she deserved. Her voice has a foggy texture which conveys a sort of savage yet classy sensuality. And as a supreme vocalist she is always in total control of her art. I always felt she was underated during her lifetime. Although Bachrach is great, the material is not equal to the singer. My favorite cut is "You Don't Have To Say You love Me". The Pet Shop Boys are already forgotten but Dusty's music will remain for all-time!"
What's It Gonna Be?
Peter Reeve | Thousand Oaks, CA USA | 05/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you want a single, low-priced CD of Dusty Springfield in your collection, then you have a choice of two; "the very best of" and "Ultimate Collection". They are both great collections but unfortunately there are some indispensable tracks that are not common to both. Here's the analysis:
On both are: I Only Want To Be With You, Wishin' and Hopin', You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, Stay Awhile, Son of a Preacher Man, I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself, What's It Gonna Be, All Cried Out, All I See Is You, The Look of Love, A Brand New Me.
Specific to 'The Very Best of' are: In The Middle of Nowhere, Little By Little, I Close My Eyes and Count To Ten, Some of Your Lovin', I'll Try Anything, Losing You, Guess Who?, Give Me Time, Goin' Back.
Specific to 'Ultimate Collection' are: Silver Threads and Golden Needles, Something In Your Eyes, Mama's Little Girl, Oh No! Not My Baby, Breakfast In Bed, Tupelo Honey, A Love Like Yours, The Windmills Of Your Mind, What Have I Done To Deserve This?
Eleven tracks is a big overlap. Clearly, purchasing both, doing some judicious ripping and burning, and re-selling one of them, is very much in order. Alternatively, get "the very best of" for a representative selection from Dusty's prime years, or "Ultimate" for a broader view of her career and her remarkable range. There are other compilations if you want to pay more. The important thing is to have some Dusty, any Dusty, in your collection. She was phenomenal.
The songs are sometimes weak - but what a singer!
bluemamma | San Luis Obispo, CA USA | 07/24/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Let's be honest. Over the years, Dusty Springfield has recorded some really bad songs. Nevertheless she rarely made a bad record. Her voice was so beautiful and expressive that, like Billie Holiday before her, she repeatedly spun dross into gold. Listen to what she does, on this CD, with lightweight, bouncy pop songs like "I Only Want To Be With You," "All Cried Out," and "Little by Little." The songs are forgettable trifles, but once you listen to Dusty Springfield sing them, you won't be able to get them out of your head. And while you're listening, they just sound like classic 60s soul. This album is an excellent introduction to the wide range of her work. What other singer could go from big Italianate ballads like "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" and "The Look of Love," to the deep soul of "Son of a Preacher Man," "In The Middle of Nowhere," "I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself," and "Some of Your Lovin"? Only a few of those songs were really hits, but all of them should have been.The last song on the album is a real find. "Goin' Back" is wonderful, wise, Goffin-King ballad - it could easily have fit on on Carole King's Tapestry - about growing older and looking back on your life. Never having heard it before, I assumed it was one of Springfield's final songs. I was surprised to discover she recorded it in 1966. The depth she sang with while only in her mid-twenties is astonishing."