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Don’t forget the songs (Part six)

Dusty Springfield – Dusty in Memphis

Released in January 1969, this album is only a recent addition to my list of favourites. In fact if you were to ask me to name the songs on it, I think I might struggle more than any of the others. It was only when I read Tracey Thorn’s books that I became aware of it, and this album is not so much for listening pleasure as for medicinal reasons. As someone who is a little “broken in the brain”, I need more than a healthy dose of anger and righteous indignation to get me through the day. Sometimes, you need to lay down in a darkened room and try to switch off. Dusty manages to create peace for me, she pours aural syrup into my ear holes and it fixes the aforementioned cerebellum, if only for a while. It has the big hit “Son of a preacher man” on it, which remains one of my earliest musical memories, but it has so much more. “Just a little lovin’” is ear candy of the highest quality and is like being cuddled by strings and voice. I have no idea if this album was in my parents collections. I doubt it, because it was not really welcomed with any acclaim at all. It’s only been in recent times that it has been recognised as one of the greats. She worked with musicians and singers who had previously worked with amongst others Elvis and Wilson Pickett. It didn’t even make the top 40 in the UK on release, and was a dreadful commercial flop. But Ina lesson to anyone creative…sometimes you just need to be patient and wait for the world to catch up. In this case, it did, and was eventually inducted into the Grammy Hall of fame in 2001. Again, there is no track by track list, this time, because I don’t know them all well enough. What I do know though, is that it is a stunning piece of work that is clearly a template for vocalists ever since. In the old classic tradition, it also sounds beautiful on the mono mixes that are available on the version below on Spotify. If you’ve not heard it before…wait for a sleepy morning, with the sun peeping though the clouds….pour a coffee and press play….you can thank me later.

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