#461: 1968, Dusty Springfield, Son Of A Preacher Man

by Ray_North on May 9, 2012


Amazingly. Indeed, inexplicably we are yet to feature Dusty Springfield in our catalogue of wonderfulness. How has that happened! 461 songs have made it onto our pages before one of Dusty’s – we should be thoroughly ashamed!

Perhaps it’s because she didn’t write her own stuff, but nor did Aretha Franklin or Elvis for that matter; perhaps it’s because we are, at the end of the day, a bit white-male-guitar band in our inclinations – but, again, there have been plenty of artists who have been lauded on these pages who are none of those things.

Perhaps it’s because we have a bit of a problem with crooners, simple singers, those artists who get up on stage in their best bib and tucker and just belt out a song – which is why the likes of Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones or Cilla Black won’t feature – I don’t know. But, it doesn’t matter, because Dusty has now made it – this song is from her acclaimed 1968 album Dusty In Memphis, which of course is anything but the work of someone who just ‘got on stage and belted out a song’ – it is a fantastic piece of work that showcases her immense talent as someone who was able to take a song and bring it to life.

Son Of A Preacher Man is as cool a song as you could wish to hear – the back beat and riff are wonderfully understated, as is Dusty’s vocal, as ever, breathy, a whiff of experience and understanding intertwined into every note as she builds the song up using her incredible range and power.

Dusty has waited a long time to make it into our list – but this song is worth the wait, it’s a classic.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike Killingworth May 10, 2012 at 7:47 am

I think this is just about a hook for me to suggest that whichever of you made Gillian Welch’s “The Harrow and the Harvest” their album of last year might care to go listen to Anais Mitchell’s “Young Man in America”…

Ah, Dusty… how I loved you as an adolescent, but I am not convinced that this is the best version of this classic song…

Reply

Ray North May 10, 2012 at 8:30 am

Mike, other excellent versions are available!

Reply

Mike Killingworth May 10, 2012 at 11:17 am

I’m sure there are!

While I’m banging on about candidates for Album of the Year 2012, have you listened to The Fray “Scars and Stories”?

Reply

George_East May 10, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Album of the Year for 2012? Steady on! We are only in May.

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