1. Shirley Bassey returns to the studio

    By Matt Weston on 2009-07-26

    With Shirley Bassey returning to the studio last month to record her first new album in nearly a decade, James Bond composer David Arnold, with whom Bassey has teamed up, spoke to Variety about working with the 007 chart-topper.

    “Shirley has sung so many different styles,” Arnold, composer of five Bond scores, said. “She is probably best known for the big ballads and the Bond themes, but ‘Big Spender’ and ‘Kiss Me Honey Honey Kiss Me’ show her playful and provocative side. [In choosing the songs], I tried to do something which honored all aspects of her character.”

    Arnold revealed all but one of the new album’s songs is an original composition, but refused to be drawn on the names of the tracks and the writers behind them.

    “[The concept] is to make a serious studio album with a great singer, to explore all facets of her abilities and personality,” Arnold said.

    The album will be made up of contemporary songs, recorded, as many contemporary albums are, by laying down the instrumental first and the vocals later.

    Variety speculates that the pairing could lead to a fourth James Bond theme for Shirley Bassey, following her classic title tracks from Goldfinger, Diamonds are Forever and Moonraker.

    72-year-old Bassey recorded the vocals last month at Ireland’s Grouse Lodge. The yet-to-be-named album will be released through Geffen Records later this year.

    Keep watching the CBn main page—and our Twitter feed—for more news on this exciting album.