Dame Shirley Bassey is celebrating 60 years in the business this year, and she has released the new record, Hello Like Before, to mark the occasion. This rare album features all of the songs Shirley has always wanted to record, but never got around to recording. Hello Like Before is Bassey's first album in 5 years.
This album is like a warm blanket on a cold day. Bassey's voice is as powerful as ever, as best evidenced on her take on the Jimmy Webb & Donna Summer classic, MacArthur Park.
While the album is filled with several impressive tracks, there are a few missteps, such as Sting's Englishman in New York and Marilyn Monroe's Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend (with Paloma Faith), which sound slightly like schmaltzy karaoke tracks. But, to still have a voice and range like Bassey does at 77, who are we to judge!?
The rest of this record is filled with several standouts, however. Bassey's take on Phylis Mollinary's Here's to Life and Bill Withers' Hello Like Before might possibly be the best renditions of these songs ever recorded (Sorry, Babs!).
Even after all these years, Dame Shirley sounds regal and elegant. This album is a standout in her impressive catalogue, recorded in the legendary Abbey Road Studio. Hello Like Before is a true celebration of a voice that spans several generations, offering up some of her best work for a whole new generation.
Take a listen to the title track Hello Like Before below and pre-order your copy of the record on iTunes, slated for release by Sony Music Entertainment UK on November 17, 2014