Cover Girls: “Always Something There to Remind Me”

Sandie_ShawFirst recorded in 1963 as a demo by Dionne Warwick, Burt Bacharach and Hal David’s classic “Always Something There to Remind Me” landed in the lower regions of the charts the next year for Lou Johnson. It wasn’t until England’s Sandie Shaw recorded a version later in 1964 that the song reached #1 in England. Known for performing barefoot, Sandie enjoyed several other major chart hits in Europe after the success of “Always Something There to Remind Me”, including “Girl Don’t Come” and “Long Live Love”. She found further success with her own clothing line in the late 6o’s.

In 1983, with her fame largely behind her, she received a letter from Morrissey and Johnny Marr of The Smiths, urging her to collaborate with them and record some of their songs. Sandie ultimately recorded three Smiths songs: “Hand in Glove”, “Jeane”, and “I Don’t Owe You Anything”, the latter written especially for her by the duo. The Smiths appeared with her to perform the songs on “Top of the Pops”, and the band performed barefoot in homage to her earlier career. The single with The Smiths reached the top 40 in England, but she wasn’t able to duplicate the huge success of  her first hit:

In 1983, just as Sandie was in the midst of her collaboration with The Smiths, a new band called Naked Eyes was hitting it big with a synthpop cover of “Always Something There to Remind Me”. This time, the song would have its biggest success on the U.S. charts, where it hit the top ten. The fame of the Naked Eyes version would far exceed any other in the states, where none of Sandie Shaw’s songs had cracked the top 40 and she was largely unknown. Vocalist Pete Byrne, a lifelong fan of the Sandie Shaw version, recorded his vocal in one take.


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