Dame Shirley has been interviewed by the BBC and the interview will be aired in 4 weekly 30 mins slots starting on October 9th. The press release is as follows:
Friday 9 October
7.00-7.30pm BBC RADIO 2
Dame Shirley Bassey reveals some of the secrets that have kept her at the pinnacle of her profession for so long and explains why she thinks she holds such a cherished place in the public’s affection, in this personal interview for BBC Radio 2. She also reminisces about rubbing shoulders with everyone from John F Kennedy to Elvis Presley and Morecambe And Wise.
In tonight’s opener, Dame Shirley talks candidly about growing up in a mixed-race family in impoverished wartime and post-war Tiger Bay. She recalls how her mother said that, as a child, Shirley would often sing instead of cry and how her siblings didn’t appreciate her constant vocalising around the house.
From humble early public performances in working men’s clubs, Dame Shirley discusses the determination that would take her into the charts for the first time in early 1957 – just a few weeks out of her teens. That drive was to bring her nine Top 10 singles and many hit albums within a few years, as she established a reputation as one of Britain’s greatest live entertainers.
The documentary includes memories from those who have worked with the singer from early times to the present day, including Don Black, Jimmy Tarbuck, Des O’Connor, Chris Rea and Shirley Eaton.
Many of the artists who have written new material for Bassey also contribute, including Gary Barlow, Neil Tennant, Richard Hawley, Tom Baxter, Kaiser Chiefs’ Nick Hodgson, as well as the producer of the singer’s latest album, and current James Bond composer, David Arnold.
Presenter & Producer/Paul Sexton
BBC RADIO 2 Friday 23 October 2009
Bassey! Ep3 and 4/4
Friday 23 October
7.00-8.00pm BBC RADIO 2
In the two final back-to-back episodes of the series before she takes to the stage for a headline performance at the BBC Electric Proms, Dame Shirley talks about her gay following and her hilarious comedy sketch with Morecambe And Wise. She also reveals surprising feelings about the songs that brought her to a new audience in the Eighties and Nineties: Yello’s Rhythm Divine and History Repeating with Propellerheads. Chris Rea also talks about working with the singer on a Nineties film project and Cerys Matthews contributes her Bassey memories.
Similarly, Dame Shirley remembers her headline-making Glastonbury Festival appearance of 2007 and talks about the art of performing live and how she goes about building a set list for her show, carefully positioning newer songs among classic hits.
In this personal interview, Dame Shirley Bassey reveals some of the secrets that have kept her at the pinnacle of her profession for so long, and explains why she thinks she holds such a cherished place in the public’s affection. She also reminisces about rubbing shoulders with everyone from John F Kennedy to Elvis Presley.
The documentary features Bassey’s best-loved songs from the Seventies, including vibrant covers of Something and Light My Fire, plus ballad favourites such as For All We Know and Never Never Never.
The documentary sets the scene for her Electric Prom, which marks the live debut of several tracks from her new album, The Performance.
Other tracks featured include Gary Barlow’s This Time, Tom Baxter’s Almost There and the Pet Shop Boys’ The Performance Of My Life. Barlow, Baxter and Neil Tennant all feature in the programme, along with fellow contributors to the album Nick Hodgson, Richard Hawley and producer David Arnold.
Presenter and Producer/Paul Sexton