Jacob Mendez
Jacob Mendez

Dusty Springfield did not live to see her 60th birthday. Crowds said goodbye to the famous singer at her funeral

Dusty Springfield this is not the singer’s real name, but an artistic pseudonym. Her real name was Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O’Brien. The name in the nickname is the result of co-creation with his brother Tom and a vocalist Tim Feild groups The Springfields. Where does the name come from? Dusty? This is the childhood nickname of the future singer, who often came home “dirty” after playing football with her peers.

O’Brien took her first steps on the music scene in a band The Lana Sisters. She gained recognition thanks to her performances in the above-mentioned band The Springfields. The formation operated for three years. In 1963 it broke up. The reason was the position of the singer, who became too big for the band.

Mike Hurst, who appeared in the band replacing Tim Feild, admitted that this was the inevitable end of this project. “I always noticed Dusty’s strength on stage. It was obvious to me that she was destined for much greater things. She was already an icon back then,” he commented.

Dusty’s career took off in the second half of the 1960s, when the singer became fascinated with the sound of Motown, and Aretha Franklin became her idol. Springfield successfully began to transfer the inspiration of the genre to Great Britain. The artist was one of the pioneers of the so-called blue-eyed soul, i.e. the mentioned genre performed by white performers.

Interestingly, the end of the singer’s popularity came in the late 1960s, when the album saw the light of day “Dusty In Memphis”, which is currently her most sought-after and appreciated album, which also includes her timeless hit “Son of a Preacher Man” (which came back into favor after many years Quentin Tarantino in the movie “Pulp Fiction”). This album was met with euphoric reviews, but it failed on the sales charts.

In the singer’s biography from 2001 Penny Valentine she wrote that the star’s self-confidence on stage was only a façade, and in fact it masked the artist’s serious mental problems. Dusty suffered from severe feelings of low self-esteem and complained of extreme stress and fear of an unexpected end to her career due to the disclosure of her sexual orientation.

“Everyone knew Dusty suffered from terrible stage fright. If you keep it under control, it can help you, adrenaline and all that… But some people can’t deal with it. Dusty dealt with it very badly. She felt it on her.” too much pressure,” she said about the artist Petula Clark.

Springfield tried to mask her mental problems with drugs and alcohol. She ended up in hospital several times due to self-harm. She was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

In the early 1970s, the singer decided to reveal her secret about her orientation, and then – away from show business – she tried to sort out her private life.

“Many people told me that I was perverted. I heard it so many times that I learned to accept it. I know that I could be seduced by a girl or a boy. More and more people feel this way and I see nothing wrong with it” – she told the Evening Standard. Today, the fact is emphasized that such a statement was an expression of courage at that time.

Even before coming out, Springfield dated the singer Norma Tanega. Then there was talk about her intimate relationship with Faye Harrisan American photographer, and then Carole Pope.

The turn of the 1970s and 1980s saw a complete collapse of Dusty’s career, which also affected her health. The singer went to rehab, and at alcoholics anonymous meetings she met her future love – an actress Then Bracci. The couple even got married, but it was not legally recognized in California. The stormy breakup took place two years later (the lovers even came to blows).

The great revival of Springfield’s career took place in the late 1980s. They invited her to cooperate Pet Shop Boys. Song “What Have I Done to Deserve This?” allowed her to return to the top, and that time brought the singer’s last great hit, the number “In Private”.

In 1994, Springfield was diagnosed with breast cancer. The singer began treatment and after several months of chemotherapy and radiotherapy she recovered. However, the cancer attacked again 2 years later. Ultimately, the artist died on March 2, 1999, a month before her 60th birthday. Two months before her death at the hands of Elizabeth II, the singer received her OBE. Crowds came to her funeral.