The singer was known for hits like Son of a Preacher Man, I Only Want to Be With You and The Look of Love.
Today the Google Doodle celebrates Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Dusty Springfield, an English singer whose long career spanned over 50 years. Today’s date, November 8, is significant in Springfield’s life because it’s the day she released her first solo single. I just want to be with youin 1963.
That’s all you need to know.
Who was Dusty Springfield?
Springfield, whose real name is Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O’Brien, was an English singer born in West Hampstead in London on April 16, 1939. Her passion for music manifested itself from an early age, and in 1958 she joined her first band music professional. group – The Lana Sisters.
A few years later, Springfield teamed up with her brother, Tom Springfriend and Tim Feild to create The Springfields, with the trio enjoying hits like Breakaway, Bambino, say I won’t be there and The island of dreams.
She left The Springfields in 1963 and released her first solo track, I just want to be with you, on November 8, 1963, which peaked at number four in the UK charts in January the following year.
What followed was a career that earned Springfield critical acclaim, with huge hits in the UK and America, and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the UK Music Hall of Fame.
What were his greatest songs?
During her career, Springfield released 21 studio albums, one live album, 30 compilations, four extended plays, and 69 singles.
Some of his greatest songs include:
- Son of a Preacher Man
- You don’t have to say you love me
- The gaze of love
- I just don’t know what to do with me
- I just want to be with you
- wishing and hoping
- I can’t do it alone
- The gaze of love
- stay a while
- What’s it gonna be
- Step by step
- Give me time
- A whole new me
Was she married?
Springfield is said to have never had a relationship with a man, meaning the subject of her sexuality has been the subject of much speculation throughout her career. While the singer is now known to be a lesbian, the stigma was something she clearly struggled with in her life, saying in an interview with Chris Van Ness of the Los Angeles Free Press that she “wanted to be straight” but that she “cannot love a man”.
She said, “I mean, people say I’m gay, gay, gay, gay, gay, gay, gay, gay. I am nothing. I’m just… People are people… I basically want to be straight… I go from male to female; I don’t give as**t. The slogan is: I can’t love a man. Now that’s my problem. Love, lie, fantastic; but to love a man is my first ambition… They scare me.
In Springfield’s authorized biography, titled dance with demons by Penny Valentine and Vicki Wickham, he said the singer lived in “fear of losing her career if exposed as a lesbian”.
Regarding Springfield’s sexuality, tennis player Billie Jean King, who knew the singer well, told the South Bank Show in 2006: “[Springfield] wanted to be true to herself…and she had a lot of demons because of it. I think her sexuality was difficult because I think she knew she was gay at that time, and there was no way in the 60s and 70s to talk about it.
From 1966 to the early 1970s, Springfield was involved with fellow singer, Norma Tanega, and throughout the 1970s and 80s she was involved in a number of romantic relationships with women in Canada and America. She had a recurring relationship with American photojournalist Faye Harris from 1972 to 1978, and in 1981 she dated Rough Trade singer Carole Pope for six months.
In 1982, Springfield met American actress Teda Bracci (Falcon Crest, Hocus Pocus) at a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous. The couple moved in together in 1983 and in November of that year exchanged vows in a marriage that was not recognized under California law at the time.
However, the couple separated within two years due to what was described as a “tempestuous” relationship.
When did she die?
Following the recording of his penultimate album, A very beautiful love, Tennessee, Springfield returned to England in 1994, where she was diagnosed with breast cancer. After receiving chemotherapy, his cancer was declared in remission, but by mid-1996 it had returned.
Springfield died on March 2, 1999 in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, shortly before her 60th birthday.
His funeral was held at the Church of St Mary the Virgin and was attended by hundreds of fans, as well as fellow musicians including Elvis Costello, Lulu and Pet Shop Boys.