I never turn down a guestpost, especially when it’s about Dusty. Adrian, take it away:
One of the great joys in life is being bowled over by a song that comes at you out of the blue, especially one that you’ve never heard before from an artist you love. Thanks to Joe Belock’s Three Chord Monte show on the mighty US radio station WFMU, I had one of those experiences this week.
It’s hard to believe that Summer Is Over by Dusty Springfield was consigned to the B-side of Losing You when it was first released in the UK in 1964. It’s quintessentially Dusty: a huge, barnstorming song that rises and falls, made even more thrilling by Ivor Raymonde’s sweeping arrangements. It was written by her brother Dion, under his Tom Springfield monicker, and Clive Westlake.
At this moment, giddy as I am, I feel it might be the greatest song ever recorded (even if it does rhyme ‘green’ with, er, ‘green’).
But, and here’s the thing, like many of her songs, and similar to other Brit girls of the 60s, she also recorded it in French. L’été est fini, with new lyrics by André Salvet, takes the English version and adds something of a softness to it, maybe because she was singing it phonetically in the studio. It was released in France on a four-track EP, simply called Dusty Springfield. The EP appeared in the UK, renamed, marvellously, Mademoiselle Dusty. Turn your speakers up, crank out both versions and wave summer goodbye.