Sunday, January 17, 2010

Two Sides Of Dusty

DUSTY SPRINGFIELD-How Can I Be Sure/Spooky U.K. Phillips 6006 045 1970

No need to waste your time or my space telling you all about Dusty Springfield here. This was my last fave record by her and is probably also my fave by her! The idea of having both the A and B side as covers of hits by other artists is fairly novel in itself, but being Dusty she pulls them both off.

Her reading of The Rascal's 1967 hit "How Can I Be Sure" works. I've always thought Felix Cavaliere's delivery was a bit "feminine sounding" so who better to cover it than Dusty? Her version is not only vocally stronger it's musically fuller. The accordion has a more distinctly "Left Bank" feel and like all of her records the backing is strong. You can almost bet there were some heavy players on the session. On the flip we have her take of The Classics IV's 1968 hit "Spooky" (and also covered in the U.K. by Gary Walker and The Rain as Polydor 56237 in Feb. '68). If any of you've ever seen the film "Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels" you can attest to Dusty's versions power when it slots in nicely in one particular scene. The mild/muted keys and the softened almost Stax/Atlantic style horns (playing what almost sounds like the riff from "Ninety Nine And A Half (Won't Do)") combined with her sultry delivery make this one of her best performances, subtle but still great.

Both sides have been on a host of Dusty CD compilations so neither is terribly hard to find and I'm certain they're both available on iTunes.
"How Can I Be Sure":


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