[19] Dusty Springfield, ‘Am I The Same Girl?’

When Junior heard we were about to put a record on, she was expecting something a little more nursery rhyme than this. “My song! My song!” she yelled and fished Party Songs out of the rack. Dusty had no answer, and soon we were bopping away to ‘Old MacDonald’ instead.

It’s a shame, because ‘Am I The Same Girl?’ is bright and airy, despite the yearning of the lyrics – is he going to wise up and rekindle that flame? It sounds like he might. Dusty’s isn’t the only great version of this song; in fact, its register is possibly a little too high for her. It’s not even the only 1969 version, coming as it did hot on the heels of Barbara Acklin’s arguably superior original – but, come on, it’s Dusty. The song was covered again in 1992 by the almighty Swing Out Sister who, although largely faithful to the earlier efforts, added a splendid ad lib at the end – “Have you ever stopped and wondered what it is you’re searching for?” – and disgraced no one in the process. It’s that kind of record.

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