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A Girl Called Dusty (Remastered)

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Album Review

This 1964 album was the U.K. equivalent of the LP that Americans knew as I Only Want to Be with You — as such, most of what was on there is embraced by the middle-late '90s reissue of that title. Polygram's British operation, however, not content to have their thunder stolen, reissued the CD separately in 1997 on the Mercury label, under its original U.K. title with eight bonus tracks taken from her first two EPs, which never made it onto an album in England. The remastering of the original LP material is, of course, spot-on (though one someday hopes to see this catalog redone for 24-bit remastering and playback). The bonus cuts include an alternate mix of "I Only Want to Be with You" with a slightly crisper profile to the rhythm instruments, and such contemporary sides as "Everyday I Have to Cry," "Can I Get a Witness," and "All Cried Out," along with slightly less familiar fare such as the stunningly soulful "I Wish I'd Never Loved You," "Once Upon a Time," and "Summer Is Over." Coupled with the original album tracks such as Springfield's devastating cover of "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," they make this a towering release in its own right, separate from the U.S. issue of I Only Want to Be with You. Most of the bonus tracks do turn up elsewhere, but it is very handy to have all of her early 1964 sides in one place, between the same two covers, and the whole CD is a overpowering listening experience. Indeed, if she'd never recorded another LP, Springfield would still have been a legend, based on the contents of this one release.


Born: 16 April 1939 in Hampstead, London, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Britain's greatest pop diva, Dusty Springfield was also the finest white soul singer of her era, a performer of remarkable emotional resonance whose body of work spans the decades and their attendant musical transformations with a consistency and purity unmatched by any of her contemporaries; though a camp icon of glamorous excess in her towering beehive hairdo and panda-eye black mascara, the sultry intimacy and heartbreaking urgency of Springfield's voice transcended image and fashion, embracing...
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