DUSTY SPRINGFIELD... "It's marvellous to be popular, but foolish to think it will last."

  Born Mary Catherine Isabel Bernadette O'Brien in London's Hampstead.
Dusty's introductory solo single was 'I Only Want To Be With You', a hit in 19 countries around the globe, including America, where it peaked at number 12, earning Dusty the acolade of becoming the first British woman to have a Top 20 single since Vera Lynn in 1952.

  The British invasion of the American charts started on 18 January 1964, when the Beatles debuted with 'I Want To Hold Your Hand, but few people are aware that the second artist to breach the Americans, defences was Dusty, 'I only Want To Be With You' making its first appearance the very next week and helping to establish a British presence which was then a great novelty, but is now an accepted and important part of the chart landscape. Dusty was different.

  Her husky, evocative and emotion-drenched style made a big impression on the American market ,was light years away from anything else coming out of England and was so soulful that Americans believed she was one of their own. Dusty was one of the most notable white soul artists.

  Motown star Martha Reeves, with whom Dusty would later duet on a memorable edition of the cult TV show 'Ready Steady Go! said, 'When I heard her on the radio, I just assumed she was American and black. Motown signed up nearly all the best new talent at that time, and I remember being a little surprised to find she was with a different label - and I was absolutely astounded when I finally saw her on TV".
Mary Wells reacted similarly and Cliff Richard labelled Dusty 'The White Negress.'
  Dusty was delighted at the confusion her voice caused........"I have a definite and deep affinity with black musicians," she said "they put so much more expression and feeling into their music than whites. I like to think that I do too."
A fan of American pop music, she campaigned to bring the then little-known soul singer to a wider British audience by devising and hosting the 1st British performances of the top-selling Motown Records Artists in 1965.

Ready Steady Go! - 1965