Albums

£10.99

Crossover - Released October 12, 2018 | Rhino

Not to be confused with the 2000/2001 Music International best-of compilation which utilizes the same title and features that tune along with other Bassey favorites, this is the 12-song 1968 release from a day when all these performances by the authoritative singer were kept under the three-minute mark. The end melody of the Lesley Bricusse/Anthony Newley tune "The Joker" from the musical production of The Roar of the Greasepaint is right out of the "he loves gold" ending from "Goldfinger," and putting it next to Batman composer Neal Hefti's "I Must Know" is pretty clever -- from the Joker to Batman's Hefti co-write. "I Must Know" is a swinging bossa nova which Eydie Gorme could have dueted on nicely here, and the Sid Feller arrangements embellish Dave Pell's first-rate production, work which gives Bassey's fantastic voice a dynamic platform -- one that doesn't interfere with her passionate expression. "This Is My Life (La Vita)" is over the top, a performance which should have been huge on America's radios. That 1965's "Goldfinger" was her only chart hit in the states is more of a statement on how unfair Top 40 was (and has always been). Shirley Bassey is no one-hit wonder; her movie soundtracks took care of that and delivered her voice to millions when transistors refused to. Tony Hatch's Top 25 chart song for Petula Clark, "Who Am I," is covered so faithfully you'd think Hatch had produced this version, and the pop sounds are a nice change of pace from the show tune presentation of "Funny Girl." Putting the theme from that motion picture next to a driving version of Bobby Hebb's "Sunny" works as smoothly as "The Joker" next to "I Must Know" -- though she gives Hebb's classic the powerful hold-the-last-note move that made "Goldfinger" so much fun. When Bassey's not making a statement like "I Must Know" or "This Is My Life," there are questioning tunes -- "Where Is Tomorrow?" or "Who Am I?"; the expressionist may be singing material written by other people, but the way she spins them across her album is the real magic she couples with her voice and spirit. When Janis Joplin put her soul on the grooves of a record, she spoke in a language that went beyond the words. Shirley Bassey does that here on This Is My Life, an album that speaks on many levels. Let there be no doubt this is a great album from one of the greats. ~ Joe Viglione
£10.99

Crossover - Released October 12, 2018 | Rhino

£1.99

Crossover - Released August 24, 2018 | WM Indonesia

£10.99

Crossover - Released June 1, 2018 | Rhino

£10.99

Crossover - Released April 13, 2018 | Rhino

£10.99

Crossover - Released April 13, 2018 | Rhino

£10.99

Crossover - Released April 13, 2018 | Rhino

£10.99

Crossover - Released April 13, 2018 | Rhino

Nobody Does It Like Me is an appropriate album title for the queen diva, Shirley Bassey, this 1974 release being another in-the-pocket delight. Producer Martin Rushent, who would take the Human League to the top of the charts in 1982, is here in an engineering capacity and the sound is somewhat different from her '60s albums and even the double-live disc from the year before. M. Randall's "Leave a Little Room" starts things off, and the feel is more geared toward the '70s adult contemporary audiophile than the cabaret circuit. Sure, it's the same instrumentation and voice her fans adore, but the music is pulled back somewhat; "When You Smile" is ready for radio, the orchestration not in your face. "All That Love Went to Waste" from the motion picture A Touch of Class finds sweeping strings and dynamic horns playing off of Bassey's intuitive phrasings. Bernard Ighner composes and duets with Bassey on "Davey," the approach Melissa Manchester would take a few years later for her tune "Whenever I Call You Friend," which Kenny Loggins hit with. Even the song selection seems positioned to get the artist a piece of that 1970s radio play that Helen Reddy, Anne Murray, and Barry Manilow were so successful conquering. Paul Anka's "I'm Not Anyone" is a seemingly perfect vehicle for just that. But where the Anne Murrays and Helen Reddys weren't known for belting tunes out, the pop music radio did embrace back then was not the operatic style Jane Olivor and others were issuing. Bassey pulls back nicely on "Morning in Your Eyes," but it still has too much elegance for programmers to latch onto. "The Trouble With Hello Is Goodbye" is traditional Bassey, subtle and overpowering all at once. The title track, "Nobody Does It Like Me," is from the Broadway musical Seesaw, and it breaks out of the soft rock of most of the album, delivering a snazzy number that, truly, few can do like Bassey: "I got a big loud mouth/I'm always talking much too free/If you go for tacky manners/Better stay away from me." The lower volume level is noticeable when "I'm Nothing Without You" follows that tour de force, its "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" strings and feel coming back to the mission of this record. And that mission is accomplished with the closing track. Just as Bassey recorded a superb version of Bobby Hebb's "Sunny," she re-interprets Stevie Wonder's song with the same flavor, "You Are the Sunshine of My Life." It oozes with classy adult pop majesty, understated vocals, and bubbling instrumentation. Totally wonderful. This rendition should have been a huge American radio hit and is the frosting on the cake. ~ Joe Viglione
£14.38
£10.79

Crossover - Released January 26, 2018 | SKIP Records

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Crossover - Released January 12, 2018 | SKIP Records

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£8.63

Crossover - Released December 16, 2003 | Pool Music & Media GmbH

£16.19

Crossover - Released July 7, 2017 | Housemaster Records

£18.99
£16.99

Crossover - Released July 7, 2017 | Real Gone Music

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Following her split with husband and creative partner Louis Prima, vocalist Keely Smith signed with Frank Sinatra's Reprise Records for a series of finely curated and well-received albums designed to showcase her voice and relaunch her career. The first of these, 1963's Little Girl Blue/Little Girl New, featured arrangements by Sinatra's longtime collaborator, the illustrious Nelson Riddle, and was conceptualized in two parts with Side A, "Little Girl Blue," featuring ballads and Side B, "Little Girl New," focusing on more upbeat numbers. The result was a tour de force of an album that presented Smith as the solo star she deserved to be -- and which Sinatra had known she could be for many years prior. Thankfully, as per all of Sinatra's Reprise contracts, the artists kept the rights to the master recordings, which is where they remained until Smith struck her own deal with Real Gone Music for a series of reissues, including this 2017 expanded edition of Little Girl Blue/Little Girl New. Though she had recorded solo albums for Dot during her years with Prima, she had been somewhat overshadowed by the kitschy, flamboyant tone (and Grammy-winning success) of their performances, which often found her playing the cheeky straight man to her trumpeter husband's swing-era clown. Afforded far greater freedom on Sinatra's label, she was presented on Little Girl Blue/Little Girl New as an urbanely sophisticated hipster and a clarion diva in the mold of such similarly inclined contemporaries as June Christy, Anita O'Day, and Kay Starr. Cuts like her yearning take on "Here's That Rainy Day" and her languorously sensual reading of "I'll Never Be the Same Again" reveal her as a mature and knowing performer in contrast to the lighter, more comedic tone of her work with Prima. That said, she can still knock 'em dead as she does on the latter half of the album, her highly resonant voice slicing through uptempo swinger's like "I'm Gonna Live 'til I Die" and "I've Got a Lot of Livin' to Do." Ultimately, listening to Smith and her pointed yet dusky, golden-toned voice pouring out of Riddle's shimmering, sky-blue arrangements, one can easily see why Sinatra jumped at the chance to work with her. ~ Matt Collar
£10.79

Crossover - Released July 3, 2017 | Housemaster Records

£10.79

Crossover - Released March 3, 2017 | Mediatone

£10.79

Crossover - Released March 3, 2017 | Mediatone

£8.63

Crossover - Released December 19, 2016 | Mountain-X

£7.19

Crossover - Released December 8, 2016 | Magao Records

£15.99
£10.39

Crossover - Released October 28, 2016 | Hubro

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Crossover - Released October 28, 2016 | WM Indonesia

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