For several years in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Dusty Springfield was romantically linked to singer-songwriter Norma Tanega. On February 5, 2021, the late, talented duo will be linked once more with a pair of new releases from our friends at Real Gone Music.
Real Gone has previously surveyed Springfield's remarkable career on releases including Faithful (premiering her complete, lost album with producer-songwriter Jeff Barry in standalone form), A Brand New Me: The Complete Philadelphia Sessions (collecting in full her work with Kenny Gamble, Leon Huff, and Thom Bell), and Come for a Dream: The U.K. Sessions 1970-1971. Now, Real Gone has assembled The Complete Atlantic Singles 1968-1971 bringing together Dusty's 24 U.S. single sides released during her tenure at Atlantic. These tracks have been remastered from the original mono tapes by Mike Milchner at Sonic Vision, and all but the eight singles pulled from Dusty in Memphis have never before appeared on CD in these original mixes. (A 2006 Universal/Eclipse release collected Springfield's 1963-1970 sides, but not all were in their proper original mixes, and this set goes beyond its purview.)
Dusty moved to Atlantic to focus on R&B under the aegis of the label's top trio of Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd, and Arif Mardin. She scored success right out of the gate with the immortal "Son-of-a Preacher Man," a top ten hit in ten countries around the world. The Complete Atlantic Singles 1968-1971 presents Springfield in powerfully sensual voice on recordings helmed by the Wexler/Dowd/Mardin team as well as by Gamble and Huff, Jeff Barry, and Ellie Greenwich and Mike Rashkow.
Such all-time songwriting titans as Carole King and Gerry Goffin ("Don't Forget About Me," "That Old Sweet Roll (Hi-De-Ho)," "So Much Love"), Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil ("Just a Little Lovin' (Early in the Morning)"), Burt Bacharach and Hal David ("In the Land of Make Believe"), Randy Newman ("I Don't Want to Hear It Anymore"), Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff ("Silly, Silly, Fool," "A Brand New Me," and "Lost," the latter two written with Jerry Butler), Thom Bell and Linda Creed ("I Wanna Be a Free Girl," co-written with Gamble and Huff), and Jeff Barry ("I Believe in You," "Nothing Is Forever," and "Haunted," the latter two with Bobby Bloom) are all represented. With the classiest elements of pop and the deepest elements of soul, Springfield's Atlantic sides were high watermarks in an extraordinary, varied discography.
Dusty Springfield's The Complete Atlantic Singles 1968-1971 features a 16-page booklet beautifully designed by Bill Pitzonka with new liner notes by The Second Disc's Joe Marchese drawing on interviews with Jeff Barry, Thom Bell, and Kenny Gamble.
Back in 1966, while Dusty Springfield was still primarily recording in the U.K., singer-songwriter Norma Tanega was making music in the States with legendary hitmaker Bob Crewe. First discovered while singing at a summer camp in the Catskills of New York, Tanega won the attention of Herb Bernstein (arranger and producer for The Happenings and Laura Nyro). Bernstein told producer Bob Crewe about Tanega and she was quickly signed to his New Voice Records label which was also the home of Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels. Walkin' My Cat Named Dog introduced listeners everywhere to Tanega's offbeat musical world, with her alternate-tuned guitars and odd-metered time signatures.
It just takes one listen to the album's opener "You're Dead" to see that Tanega was unlike her contemporaries. Yet, American listeners seemed to dig her idiosyncrasies, as the album's title track climbed to No. 22 on the Billboard chart, hit the top ten in Canada, and received attention across the pond, too. In no time, the likes of Barry McGuire, The Jazz Crusaders, Art Blakey, and The T-Bones had cut versions of her hit. With appearances on American Bandstand and Where The Action Is, it seemed that Tanega was primed for stardom. After visiting England for some television spots, she chose to move to London where she started writing songs for others. Her music was recorded by Tom Springfield (formerly of The Springfields, and co-author of The Seekers' "Georgy Girl"), and she began a relationship with his sister, Dusty, who also covered her work. In 1971, Tanega released I Don't Think It Will Hurt If You Smile but it wasn't received as well as her debut and she soon moved back to the States where she taught music and recorded a number of experimental works. Tracks from her debut continues to reach listeners even more than a half-century on. In fact, "You're Dead" is currently the theme to the FX program What We Do in the Shadows.
Now, after Real Gone's prior vinyl reissues, Walkin' My Cat Named Dog will reach even wider audiences with its first CD reissue in over two decades. Whereas that version featured new, inferior cover artwork and merely decent sound, Real Gone's new reissue restores the original cover and boasts a rich new mastering by Mike Milchner from high-resolution digital files of the original stereo masters. Richie Unterberger has written the notes, and two mono non-LP singles, "Bread" and "Run, On the Run," have been appended as bonus tracks.
Both Dusty Springfield's The Complete Atlantic Singles 1968-1971 and the expanded edition of Norma Tanega's Walkin' My Cat Named Dog are due from Real Gone Music on February 5, 2021 and can be pre-ordered at the links below.
Dusty Springfield, The Complete Atlantic Singles 1968-1971 (Real Gone Music, 2021) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada)
- Son-of-a Preacher Man (Atlantic 45-2580, 1968)
- Just A Little Lovin' (Early in the Morning) (Atlantic 45-2580, 1968)
- Don't Forget About Me (Atlantic 45-2606, 1969)
- Breakfast in Bed (Atlantic 45-2606, 1969)
- The Windmills of Your Mind (Atlantic 45-2623, 1969)
- I Don't Want to Hear It Anymore (Atlantic 45-2623, 1969)
- Willie and Laura Mae Jones (Atlantic 45-2647, 1969)
- That Old Sweet Roll (Hi-De-Ho) (Atlantic 45-2647, 1969)
- In the Land of Make Believe (Atlantic 45-2673, 1969)
- So Much Love (Atlantic 45-2673, 1969)
- A Brand New Me (Atlantic 45-2685, 1969)
- Bad Case of the Blues (Atlantic 45-2685, 1969)
- Silly, Silly Fool (Atlantic 45-2705, 1970)
- Joe (Atlantic 45-2705, 1970)
- I Wanna Be a Free Girl (Atlantic 45-2729, 1970)
- Let Me Get In Your Way (Atlantic 45-2729, 1970)
- Lost (Atlantic 45-2739, 1970)
- Never Love Again (Atlantic 45-2739, 1970)
- What Good Is I Love You (Atlantic 45-2771, 1970)
- What Do You Do When Love Dies (Atlantic 45-2771, 1970)
- Haunted (Atlantic 45-2825, 1971)
- Nothing Is Forever (Atlantic 45-2825, 1971)
- I Believe In You (Atlantic 45-2841, 1971)
- Someone Who Cares (Atlantic 45-2841, 1971)
Norma Tanega, Walkin' My Cat Named Dog: Expanded Edition (New Voice Records LP NVM 2001, 1966 - reissued Real Gone Music, 2021) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada)
- You're Dead
- Treat Me Right
- Don't Touch
- Walkin' My Cat Named Dog
- A Street That Rhymes at 6 A.M.
- I'm Dreamin' a Dream
- What Are We Craving?
- No Stranger Am I
- Hey Girl
- I'm the Sky
- Bread (New Voice 815, 1966)
- Run, On the Run (New Voice 821, 1967)
Joe Mac Pherson says
Why anyone would want to buy a vinyl LP, is beyond my comprehension. Vinyl wears down. A needle is literally cutting into the sound wave. Vinyl has surface noise, it can hiss, pop, crackle, skip. And, you have to stop everything you're doing, wash your hands, go to a record player and turn the album over.
These scenarios don't exist with CD. Plus, the cost is better, the sound is clearer and CD's hold a lot more music.
I gave up my entire vinyl collection of import/domestic LP's, 12" import/domestic singles, 10" import singles, 7" domestic/import singles for the CD format, in 1988. No regrets. No looking back.
I was buying Dusty Springfield records when I was 13, in 1968. I have a large selection of her catalogue on CD, and it's mostly UK import. I'm really pleased to see her Atlantic singles collection getter the superb treatment they deserve. Equally, I'm looking forward to buying Norma Tanega's music!
Thank You, for posting this article!
Bill Mulvihill says
I agree totally.
Why don’t they make DES mono to stereo versions of these?
What’s with them?
Get with the technology!
ALL vinyl records I have heard sound better than their cd versions. There's plenty of info online as to why this is. As for wearing down, if you treat them like your child, they will last forever. I have records from the late 50s and early 60s that sound like new.
Joe Mac Pherson says
I must disagree. In December, 1987, I was visiting the city of Boston, in Massachusetts. I spent a lot of money in one of the finest independent record stores, based near Kenmore Square. I bought 6 UK import albums; one was a double LP. I couldn't play any of them until I got back home, more than 2,000 miles away.
As soon as I was back, I couldn't wait to hear the import LP's and I knew they'd never get a US release. Of the 6 albums I bought, absolutely new, just out of the shrink wrap, one began producing surface noise. Another was skipping the record needle and nothing I did would prevent the interruptions. Another had popping sounds, and crackle. By now I was furious. I had these expensive albums, defective, and I couldn't return them. Of the other 3 albums, 1 had crackle and surface noise and I think only 2 actually had no problems at all.
THAT DID IT FOR ME. My resolution for 1988 was to buy a deluxe 5 CD player, and exchange my entire vinyl library of more than 2,000 titles in 1987, for the CD format.
I never bought a brand new CD that gave me the problems of vinyl. No one will ever convince me, vinyl is better. Plus, a needle is literally wearing into the sound groove, on vinyl. That doesn't happen with CD. I've lived long enough to know the difference!
Dusty Devotee says
What wonderful news! Real Gone ought to consider an eleventh hour track list adjustment and include the official mono mix of “I’ll Be Faithful” as a bonus track. This was slated as a third single release from the Faithful sessions but ultimately shelved when Dusty and Atlantic parted ways. It would make absolute sense to feature here and would be a valuable premiere as only the stereo mix has ever been released.
I agree with Dustydevotee, it would make perfect sense
Joe Marchese says
Hi friends, the concept here is exactly what the title says: Dusty's COMPLETE ATLANTIC SINGLES 1968-1971. With a full two dozen tracks - 16 making their CD debut in their original mono single mixes including "What Good Is I Love You" with its original drum track - this CD collects every A- and B-side released by Dusty at Atlantic. "I'll Be Faithful" was never released as a single, hence it's not included here. Rest assured we love "I'll Be Faithful" nonetheless, and we hope you enjoy this collection which fills a major gap in Dusty's CD discography.
Dusty Devotee says
The fans very much appreciate this wonderful concept and thoughtfully arranged product! I have been waiting years for “What Good Is I Love You” Mono Version to appear on CD and that was the first thought I had when I saw this set announced. Talk about a dream come true! I hope the mono version of “I’ll Be Faithful” will be considered for a future Dusty compilation.
Malcolm Stainthorpe says
Would be nice to complete the set by including I'll be faithful
Michael Roberts says
I am always on board for any new Dusty Springfield release. So excited for this one.
It sounds like it is going to be a beautiful package,
Harry Cohen says
Even though I own every one of these tracks on other compilations or on the original lp, I am looking forward to this release. I was a bit disappointed in the sound on the Brand New Me reissue of a few years ago. It sounded muddy to my ears. I hope this will be rectified.
Never Love Again still gives goosebumps.
In a similar vein, it would be great for Real Gone to do a compilation of all of Petula Clark's A and B sides from Warner Brothers. Petula is still performing at the age of 88 and was recently nominated for an Olivier Award for her work in the West End revival of Mary Poppins.
Finally, I will be ordering Norma also.
Nigel de Gale says
Real Gone continues to delight. Just when I thought the well was dry, they come up with another logical and smart idea, one I never even thought of. The highlights for me will be the original mix of ‘What Good Is I love You’ with original drum track. In addition I hope and expect (based on the listed single # 45-2771) that ’What Do You Do When Love Dies’ will be the mix WITH orchestral overdubs.
While on the subject of Dusty and Real Gone, regarding ‘A Brand New Me - Complete Philadelphia Sessions':
I was delighted by the re-sequencing of this album. While I am not an audiophile, I have an ear for good track sequencing. Of all Dusty’s original albums, this was the only one for which the sequencing always bugged me. The strong title track, having both ballad and uptempo sections was always the perfect opener. The original two openers, both similar uptempo numbers are now wisely separated, providing ‘comic relief’ for an album that suffered from a ballad heavy sameness after a while. I also loved the new mixes and the extended fades.
My copy arrived today. I'm not sure if I've heard ever heard the mono versions, before. It sounds great, and the waveforms are nice and dynamic!
Joe Marchese says
Thanks, Galley. Glad you're enjoying it. I haven't even seen a copy yet! 🙂
Robert Lett says
Listened to mine today. Fantastic. Nice job with the notes Joe.
Joe Marchese says
Thanks so much!
I'm a fan and glad to see that the late, great Norma Tanega's debut album Walkin' My Cat Named Dog has been reissued and expanded with the two bonus tracks. I ordered a copy from Amazon.com and received it a few days ago. It's awesome and sounds great! It's good to have her early recordings available once again and I hope that Real Gone Music will also consider reissuing her rare second album, 1971's I Don't Think It Will Hurt If You Smile.