Dame Shirley Bassey has set a new UK chart record with her “grand finale” album I Owe It All To You. The 83-year-old entertainer’s Decca release debuted on yesterday’s (13) official UK chart at No.5, her highest-charting set since 1978, eighth Top 10 and 35th Top 40 title. The Official Charts Company confirms that Bassey thus becomes the first female artist to register a UK Top 40 album for seven consecutive decades.
From her home in Monaco, the superstar vocalist said: “I’m so proud to be celebrating reaching the Top 5 with my grand finale album I Owe It All To You! Sharing my 70 year career alongside so many other talented performers, my team, my family and fans has been an honor. Thank You. Thank you to Wales! Thank you to the music! And for my fans – I Owe It All To You!”
Bassey’s UK singles chart debut came in 1957 with “The Banana Boat Song,” but it was 1961 before she graced the album listing for the first time with her third LP, The Fabulous Shirley Bassey, which reached No.12. Her first Top 10 appearance on the album chart came just a few weeks later, when Shirley peaked at No.9. She didn’t return to the Top 10 until the Something album, featuring her hit cover of George Harrison’s composition as its title track, hit No.5 in 1970.
Her best-ever ranking on the countdown came when the 1975 retrospective The Shirley Bassey Singles Album reached No.2 during a 24-week chart run. Ironically, it was held off the No.1 spot by perhaps her male counterpart among Welsh singing exports, Tom Jones, with his own 20 Greatest Hits anthology.
Bassey’s last album, 2014’s Hello Like Before, reached No.24, while 2007’s The Performance, featuring songs specially written for her by Gary Barlow, the Pet Shop Boys, Rufus Wainwright, Manic Street Preachers and many others, peaked at No.20.
I Owe It All To You can be bought here.