Part of the British Invasion wave of Female Singers in the mid-60s, Shaw had a string of unforgettable hits, placing her in the ranks of Pop icons, epitomizing the “swinging 60s” and appearing on every Pop Music TV and radio program throughout the world.
When musical tastes changed, and her popularity began to wane in the late 60s, Shaw embarked on a new aspect of her career as a Cabaret singer, and it during that period that Shaw was asked by the BBC to participate in the legendary Eurovision Song Contest of 1967. She was the first British artist to win the coveted contest and it was a huge boost in her popularity which had a resurgence, lasting until 1972, when Shaw put singing on hold for a while and branched off into other pursuits.
This session, from 1988, comes around the time she was “rediscovered” by The Smiths’ Morrisey and Johnny Marr. She had earlier performed a one-off duet with The Pretenders Chrissie Hynde, one of Sandie Shaw’s signature songs, Girl Don’t Come – and it was this performance at a concert in 1983 that caught the attention of Morrisey and Marr who persuaded her to perform some Smiths material.
The collaboration between Shaw and The Smiths produced another string of hits for Shaw. And it was this surprising turn of events, and this new phase of her career that introduced a whole new generation to her legendary artistry. The result was new album projects in 1983 and in 1988 (which this session features songs from).
Although she’s been officially retired from singing since 2013, her music has maintained a steady popularity – both for the 60s classics and her 80s.
I should dig up some of her 60s sessions as a way of contrasting her two eras – but those of you who remember her during the 60s may or may not be familiar with her 80s work – and those familiar with her work in the 80s may not be familiar with her earlier work in the 60s.
In either case, doing a little research and seeking out her records could yield some thoroughly astonishing results. A wonderful artist with a distinctive, haunting voice – Sandie Shaw is truly one-of-a-kind and it wouldn’t hurt to be familiar with her long and iconic career.
Crank it up and enjoy.