1974 - HERE COMES THE SUN (RSO)
(Liverpool Echo, November 29, 1974)
Barbara Dickson could almost be called the fifth Beatle these days. For she has taken the West End by
storm with her singing in the hit show 'John Paul George Ringo... & Bert'. Without doubt she is one of
the musical finds in the show which had such a successful start here at the Everyman. Big things are
now happening for her with the release of a soundtrack album from the show and a single on RSO.
She sings superbly on the single - Here Comes The Sun (RSO 2090 144) - which is being tipped as
a top ten entry.
1975 - ANSWER ME (RSO)
(Melody Maker, November 22, 1975)
Crack a magnum of champagne, Madam! As slushy and showbizy as this single is, it's a gem.
The hottest commercial competition this week. With a voice fresh and clear cut, Barbara is already
a favoured newcomer. To follow her fine interpretations of The Beatles' numbers in the hit show
'John Paul George Ringo And Bert', she's covered Frankie Laine's 1963 hit. An inspired choice. Junior Campbell's sure touch production has the single nudging along under the melody and the jaunty back-up vocals are perfectly mixed between strings and bass. A triumph of style. Deserves to be a tremendous hit.
1976 - PEOPLE GET READY (RSO)
(Daily Express, March 5, 1976)
Get ready, people... here comes Barbara Dickson's scintillating new single, "People Get Ready", due to hit your friendly neighbourhood
record bar next Thursday. The svelte Scots chanteuse has wisely opted for a complete change of mood and tempo in this follow-up to her recent chart smash, "Answer Me". And the new disc, a fresh interpretation of the Impressions' old soul hit of a few years back, has all the hallmarks of another biggie for Barbara.
1976 - OUT OF LOVE WITH LOVE (RSO)
(Daily Express, 20th June 1976)
Fans and DJ's alike will no doubt soon be in love with this melodic ballad from Dunfermline's own bonnie
Babs. But I still think the flip-track, "Boys From The Men," should have been the A-Side. It shows the bluesy
quality of Barbara's voice off to great effect.
1977 - ANOTHER SUITCASE IN ANOTHER HALL (MCA)
(Melody Maker, 12th February 1977)
Divorced from the pretentious context of the 'opera' "Evita", this song - like "Don't Cry For Me Argentina" - is far more palatable... What the lady in this song - one of Juan Peron's teenage mistresses - is going to do in another hall is anybody's guess. She was ousted by Eva, who only knew the halls of her husband's palatial mansions. Heard as nothing but a love song, however, this song is poignant and lovely. How lucky Lloyd Webber and Rice are to have Julie Covington and now Dickson, to add the flesh and bones to songs which might otherwise be wrecks of soppy melodrama. A smash hit.
1977 - LOVER'S SERENADE (RSO)
(North Cheshire Herald, 3rd June 1977)
One of my favourite female vocalists, Barbara has a charming charisma which she beautifully showcases on this bubbling offering. Her volatile inflections top off a lightly palpitating instrumentation. It's a splendid single which tastefully exudes an attractive geniality perfectly befitting the amorous character of the song. It perceptively radiates the all-engrossing aura of contentment that comes to everybody when they have discovered their right partner. A huge hit, in my opinion.
1979 - COME BACK WITH THE SAME LOOK IN YOUR EYES (Epic)
(Record Mirror, 1979)
Ideal for those scenes in films when the boy and girl run to meet each other in the middle of a daisy-covered cow pasture.
Great lyrics sung to a base of strings, drums and a superb sax solo mid-way and on the fade. Take a pat on the bonce Babsy baby, this deserves to rocket you to the top.
1979 - CARAVANS (Epic)
(Melody Maker, 1979)
It's nice to see Barbara Dickson back in the charts with the theme song from the film 'Caravans'. Ironic, too, because it's by no means the best song she's recorded in recent years. I particularly liked her last single, a rousing version of Gerry Rafferty's 'City To City', but the record-buying public and - more to the point - the radio DJs weren't so impressed, so...no hit. Of course, the release of the movie 'Caravans', starring Anthony Quinn, has helped her current release. And the fact that the theme song was written by Mike "Bright Eyes" Batt hasn't hindered, either.
1980 - JANUARY, FEBRUARY (Epic)
(New Musical Express, 1980)
If Cliff's 'We Don't Talk Anymore' is the Todd Rundgren single of 1979, then this is Todd's single of 1980. Producer Alan Tarney has his ears beautifully plugged into every trick and device of texture and melody... and then a bit more. Must be a hit.
2014 - REUNIED EP (Neon)
(Folk Words website, 27th March, 2014)
The enduring talents of Barbara Dickson and Rab Noakes, reunited with the essential simplicity of two guitars and two voices. To hear a touch of the magic this coming together will generate, listen to the EP ‘Reunited’ – it’s simply gorgeous.
Friends for nearly 50 years, Barbara and Rab have, with ‘Reunited’, chosen a short collection that represents songs they love and musical directions they've explored together and separately over the years. Aside from the obvious gems on offer, this recording reflects the presence of the lasting relationship between these two outstanding artists, and blends some well-chosen songs into one seriously superb EP.
The epitome of the term eclectic, ‘Reunited’ adds different depths to some familiar songs. It moves effortlessly between the bluesy ‘Do right woman’ from Barbara’s debut solo album, through Rab leading on the caustic observations of ‘(Don't say) Money doesn't matter’ to Barbara’s entreating ‘The same sky’ from the After Dark album. A country-tinged ‘Que sera sera’ is given a solid edge by Rab’s laid back vocal, while ‘Something's wrong’ revisits the folk club atmospheres of ‘B4 Seventy four’. And fans of the Everley Brothers will adore their understated take on ‘Sleepless nights’.
2014 - REUNIED EP (Neon)
(The Herald, 2nd April, 2014)
The only real deficiency in this six-track sampler of the music to be heard on the tour that the two veterans of Scotland’s 1960s folk scene set off on this Friday is that it fails to include a cover of the Peaches & Herb hit from 1979 that gives it its title. With an admirably punk-rock aesthetic, if more regard for pace and sonic quality, Dickson and Noakes recorded this 20 minutes of music in a single afternoon at the home studio of John Cavanagh in Glasgow’s leafy Muirend.
With Dickson now reclaimed from the world of musical theatre, and Noakes enjoying an Indian summer as a performer after life as an independent media mogul, they can take their rightful place as our GP and Emmylou.
That inspiration is audible in opener Do Right Woman, with Dickson employing just the right level of vocal vibrato, while the Everlys supply the lovely closer, Sleepless Nights. In between, the duo swap lead vocals and harmony duties, with Noakes having the tune in a remarkable reading of Que Sera Sera that rescues it from clubland cheese with moving profundity.