Jerry Wexler; Tom Dowd; Arif Mardin; Tom Down; Jeff Barry; Jerry Wexler; Tom Dowd; Arif Mardin; Jim Pierson (Compilation); Jim Pierson (Reissue)
Number of Discs
76m : 28s
The Sweet Inspirations
Album Notes and Credits
Personnel: Dusty Springfield (vocals); Dusty Springfield; Tommy Cogbill (guitar, bass instrument); Arif Mardin (strings); Tom Dowd (horns); Bobby Wood (piano); Mike Leach, Mike Leech (congas); Reggie Young (guitar, sitar); Bobby Emmons (piano, electric piano, organ, congas); Gene Chrisman (drums); The Sweet Inspirations (background vocals).
Audio Remasterer: Daniel Hersch.
Liner Note Authors: Jim Feldman; Jim Pierson.
Recording information: American Studios, Memphis, TN (09/1968-06/1971); Century Sound Studio, NY (09/1968-06/1971); Groove Sound Studio, NY (09/1968-06/1971); Sigma Sound Studios, Philadelphia, PA (09/1968-06/1971).
Director: Gene Orloff.
Photographer: David Redfern.
Arrangers: Tom Dowd; Arif Mardin; Thom Bell.
Not only is this Dusty's finest work, it is unanimously acknowledged as one of the great soul albums. The secret is in the production. Jerry Wexler, Tommy Dowd, and Arif Mardin enlisted the Sweet Inspirations and the best Memphis session boys for vocal support. Dusty's selection of material is exemplary, choosing songs by Randy Newman, Mann/Weill, Goffin/King, and Bacharach/David. This should have made her an international megastar; instead it scraped the US Top 100, failed to chart in the UK, and started her slow decline. It is a faultless record on which we have, thankfully, now recognized she was far too ahead of her time for her own good.
Rolling Stone (4/11/02, p.106) - Ranked #9 in Rolling Stone's "50 Coolest Records".
Rolling Stone (10/31/02, p.135) - Ranked #3 in Rolling Stone's "Women In Rock: The 50 Essential Albums" - "...[A] British soul masterpiece..."
Rolling Stone (11/1/69, p.42) - "...most of the songs...have a great deal of depth while presenting extremely direct and simple statements about love....Dusty sings around her material, creating music that's evocative rather than overwhelming..."
Spin (p.84) - "[With] the dizzying 'The Windmills of Your Mind,' and 'Breakfast in Bed' -- whose title reads like the album feels."
Entertainment Weekly (10/9/92, p.60) - "...her lighter-than-air voice carries the album aloft..." - Rating: B
Entertainment Weekly (3/12/99, p.71) - "...It's her shining moment and just might be one of the all-time great pop albums." - Rating: A
Q (3/95, p.119) - 3 Stars - Good - "...balances R&B and sensitive pop dramas..."
NME (Magazine) (10/2/93, p.29) - Ranked #54 in NME's list of the `Greatest Albums Of All Time.'