The Hit Songs of Dusty Springfield
The Best of Dusty Springfield
In my humble opinion, Dusty Springfield's hit songs have rightly been cited as among the best by any British female singer of her generation.
Starting out as a member of The Springfields, she progressed to a solo career in the 1960s and was among the forefront of the British Invasion, enjoying success in both the USA and the UK.
Although not immediately recognisable in her earlier recordings, her preference for the soul music coming out of America became more apparent as her career blossomed. She has been credited with introducing the Motown Sound to the UK; when on TV in the Sixties she hosted a showcase of the music, singing along with Martha Reeves.
You can hear that soulfulness in many of the songs featured here, all of which appeared on the British music charts of the time. During the 1960s, there was sometimes a discrepancy between the Dusty Springfield songs released as singles in the UK and the USA. Therefore, there may be tracks missing here that were popular in the States which were not so in Britain, and vice versa.
However, there is no denying the popularity of Dusty Springfield, not only in the 1960s, but also during her comeback in the 1980s and 1990s. If, like me, you enjoy the output of one of the finest popular singers the UK has produced, then you are in for a treat!
1963: "I Only Want to Be With You"
Dusty's first hit in the UK was this Number 4 song written by Mike Hawker and Ivor Raymonde.
Unequivocally catchy, Dusty delivers a full blooded vocal full of defiance that, at the time, had not been matched by many female singers in the rock era.
With the beginnings of the British Invasion taking place in the US, it also became her first hit record in America too.
Dusty's first album is a wonderful recording to have in your own collection.
Hit Songs of 1964
Stay Awhile: This Number 13 UK hit is a song that includes much that is reminiscent of Phil Spector's Wall of Sound. It seems the three minute single had not fully arrived yet, as this clocks in at a little under two minutes.
I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself: One of Dusty Springfield's biggest hits of the 1960s, this is an emotionally laden ballad that defined her plaintive, soulful vocals. It reached Number 3 in the UK, but strangely failed to chart in the USA.
Losing You: Dusty's third and final UK Top 20 hit of 1964. Catch a glimpse of Gene Pitney in the video from the 1960s pop show Ready, Steady, Go!
I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself
If, like me, you enjoy listening to Dusty Springfield, then you can own a lot of her best known recordings on this selection.
Hit Songs of 1965
Your Hurtin' Kinda Love: A minor Top Forty hit in the UK, this was nevertheless another Dusty vocal tour-de-force, as she infuses her soulful voice into a standard pop-style Sixties song.
In the Middle of Nowhere: Another huge hit in the UK that missed the mark in the US, the song is an uptempo "growler" from Dusty that made the Top Ten in July.
Some of Your Lovin': Written by the famed songwriting team of Gerry Goffin and Carole King, this song became Dusty Springfield's favourite performance and was another Top 10 hit in October.
Your Hurtin' Kinda Love
In the Middle of Nowhere
Some of Your Lovin'
Little By Little
Hit Songs of 1966
Little By Little: 1966 was to be Dusty Springfield's most successful year singles wise. This first hit of the year really did not indicate the direction in which she was headed, but it nevertheless gave her a rock inspired Top 20 hit.
You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: Surprisingly, this was Dusty's only ever UK Number One hit. Originally an Italian song entitled "Lo Che Non Vivo (Senza Te)," it was given an English lyric full of unrequited love in which she gives one of her finest vocal performances.
Goin' Back: Not released as a single in the US, if pushed, this is quite possibly my favourite of Dusty Springfield's songs. Another track penned by Gerry Goffin and Carole King, Dusty's rendition will surely break your heart. It peaked at Number 10 in July.
All I See is You: Dusty is still in distress as the lyrics prove with this emotional ballad that saw it rise up the British charts to a peak of Number 9 in October.
You Don't Have to Say You Love Me
All I See is You
I'll Try Anything
Hit Songs of 1967
I'll Try Anything: A return to an uptempo Dusty, this song was more reflective of her soul preferences, sounding somewhat like the Tamla Motown sound that she was happy to promote. However, it broke a streak of three UK Top 10 hits by only peaking at Number 13.
Give Me Time: This tearjerker followed later in 1967, but by this time the record buying public's attention was being drawn to the Summer of Love and not impassioned ballads. Still a fine recording, though it did not perform well in the music charts, peaking at a lowly Number 24. It became the B-Side of her American hit The Look of Love.
Give Me Time
I Close My Eyes and Count to Ten
Hit Songs of 1968
I Close My Eyes and Count to Ten: Dusty Springfield returned to the UK Top Five with this plaintive mid tempo number that produced yet another fine vocal performance.
Son of a Preacher Man: This would be Dusty Springfield's last UK Top 10 hit for eighteen years, but it seems she saved the best for last. As the 1960s came to a close, she finally recorded several songs in a genre that was close to her heart, with musicians whom she admired. Son of a Preacher Man was lifted from one of the best albums of the decade: Dusty in Memphis.
Son of a Preacher Man
What Have I Done to Deserve This?
In Collaboration With the Pet Shop Boys - Hits From the 1980s & 1990s
In the late 1980s, pop-synth duo The Pet Shop Boys rediscovered Dusty Springfield and featured her on their latest single of the time, "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" This led to a revival in her career and saw her appear in both the UK and US music charts into the early 1990s.
Several of these hit songs were either written and/or produced by The Pet Shop Boys and are included here. They are "Nothing Has Been Proved," "In Private," "Reputation," and "Arrested By You" which were all taken from her UK Top Twenty album: Reputation & Rarities.
Nothing Has Been Proved
Arrested By You
Goin' Back: The Springfields
For the sake of completeness, it would be remiss to forget about Dusty's contribution to The Springfields' successful output of the early 1960s.
Included here are the group's two major British hits, Island of Dreams and Say I Won't Be There, along with their US-only hit Silver Threads and Golden Needles.