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Feb 05

JACKIE TRENT – “Where Are You Now (My Love)?”

Popular21 comments • 4,294 views

#195, 22nd May 1965

The sixties canon-builders and nostalgia workers have strip-mined these charts, so when I come across a hit I’d never even heard of, I have to wonder why. As you’d expect the answer is often – “because it’s no good”. This starts as a Bacharach pastiche, delicate if a bit prim, but quickly settles into a more comfortable routine: an old school strident ballad. Jackie Trent herself sings with a plummy, annoying, precision – check the “I don’t know when / I’ll ever see you again” couplet, where her just-so enunciation only draws attention to the somewhat unsurprising rhyme. However if it’s a posher, charisma-free Cilla you’re after then this is surely the hit for you.

(Obligatory Jackie Trent fact: written with Tony Hatch, who went on to do lots of good TV themes and at least one deeply irritating one, the Neighbours theme, whose lyrics were written by Jackie T.)

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Comments

  1. 1
    Anonymous on 23 Feb 2005 #

    It got to #1 off the telly!

    Still, it’s clear that Hatch and Trent were wise to give their best songs to Petula Clark; I like the song but Trent’s delivery is a bit schoolmarmish, a kind of MoR equivalent of the Pete ‘n’ Dud “Bo Duddley” routine, and you end up thinking “bad Bacharach.”
    Marcello Carlin | Email | Homepage | 02.22.05 – 9:21 am | #

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    Yes, if there are any covers I’d like to know about them – something about JT annoys me too much to come to much of a conclusion about the song’s underlying quality.
    Tom | Email | Homepage | 02.22.05 – 9:29 am | #

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    Have to admit I prefer this to “King of the Road” – an enjoyably slight period piece (the latter is an *irritatingly* slight period piece). Should have been prefixed with the Rediffusion London ident, though, not Granada’s three seconds of silence.

    You’re right that Jackie Trent’s voice is decidedly old-school, which is presumably why she basically concentrated on songwriting from here on in (only two other very minor Top 50 entries). She’d probably have had loads of hits if she’d been born a decade or so earlier.
    Robin Carmody | Email | Homepage | 02.22.05 – 12:48 pm | #

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    Have no recollection of this AT ALL. I’m mystified…
    Mark Gamon | Email | Homepage | 02.22.05 – 4:02 pm | #

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    It’s almost certainly one of the least recalled number ones of its era. Many more people would probably think “Downtown” got the top …
    Robin Carmody | Email | Homepage | 02.22.05 – 7:40 pm | #

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    I have absoloutely no recollection of the TV programme either. Cripes. That’s O levels for you: look at all the high culture I missed while I was studying…
    Mark Gamon | Email | Homepage | 02.23.05 – 6:58 am | #

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    I own this! OK, it’s on that Castle Music “1965 – The Soundtrack” (= all the 1965 songs Sanctuary owns the rights to) comp, which I bought for hopefully obv reasons (see comments box for “Ticket To Ride” if not).

    Don’t like the song much, but I’ll defend Ms Trent’s voice and style: what’s wrong with enunciating properly? And she’s no more strident than, say, Shirley Bassey – who only needed the right material and a great arranger to produce a masterpiece (the Something LP).
    jeff w | 02.23.05 – 7:16 am | #

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    There’s a difference between Shirley Bassey stridency and Joan Regan/Muffin The Mule-style matriarchial enunciations. Especially since Our Jackie came from up Yorkshire way innit.
    Marcello Carlin | Email | Homepage | 02.23.05 – 7:18 am | #

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    oi marcello! less of the anti-muffinism plz!! don’t step on my dreamz!

    muffin went off air before my mum and dad got a telly, so i never watched it – however my most desired kidditoy item was a muffin marionette owned by the children of one of mum’s friends

    important: the marionette was made entirely of METAL
    p^nk s | Email | 02.23.05 – 7:35 am | #

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    Muffin went off the air before you were *born* unless I’m very much mistaken …
    Robin Carmody | Email | Homepage | 02.23.05 – 9:16 am | #

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    A little less dissin’ da mule around here please guys. Muffin was very definitely still ON air when I was a wee laddie and I’ll step on the puppeting fingers of any man or woman who dares to criticise him.

    (Somehow it seems appropriate that our debate on the Jackie trent record has so rapidly deteriorated into a discussion of seminal children’s TV…)
    Mark Gamon | Email | Homepage | 02.23.05 – 9:35 am | #

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    Presented by John Mills’ elder sister!

    For evidence of the underrated contribution of Harry “Sooty” Corbett to pop vocal stylings one need go no further than Malcolm McLaren’s voiceover on “Double Dutch.”
    Marcello Carlin | Email | Homepage | 02.23.05 – 10:01 am | #

  2. 2
    Anonymous on 23 Feb 2005 #

    This one never drifted west of the Atlantic, so it’s an unknown to me. I listened to a bit of it on a download yesterday. It’s not THAT awful–more like charisma-free Petula, I think. Only natural, of course, since most of Pet’s hits were written by Hatch and Trent.

    Doctor Mod

  3. 3
    Robin on 23 Feb 2005 #

    I meant to say that Muffin finished before 1960, when Mark S was born. I’m *sure* that’s right (sporadic nostalgic revivals excepted).

    Anyway, enough of this!

  4. 4
    Anonymous on 24 Feb 2005 #

    This is pretty rub, but I do like Trent+Hatch as writers. I have ‘Major to Minor’ on the brain at moment, but can’t remember who did it. Was it the Settlers? Same kind of wholesome delivery as Jackie T anyway. Dr. C

  5. 5
    Mark Gamon on 27 Feb 2005 #

    Anonymous – do you mean ‘how strange the change from major to minor’ ? That was Cole Porter. TH and JT may have nicked the idea for something else – I never paid them enough attention to know.

    Incidentally, Cole Porter’s lyric is actually accompanied by a chord change that goes from minor to major. In opposition to the lyric. Now that’s what I call a musician’s joke.

  6. 6
    Anonymous on 2 Mar 2005 #

    No I didn’t mean the Cole Porter song…I looked it up and it is the Settlers. I have it on Ripples volume something (2?), but it’s also on Castle Music’s “The Songs Of Tony Hatch” Unlike the Porter, it does go from major to minor when the lyric says so. Dull!

    Dr. C

  7. 7
    Dave Taylor on 12 Apr 2007 #

    It was actually the theme tune to a TV series – I remember watching a couple of episodes all those years ago. In the last episode the leading female was shown lying on the floor with her head in the gas oven just as the lyrics faded in “Where are you now my love ?”

  8. 8
    jan stanyer on 9 Jul 2007 #

    Dave Taylor. yes I remember that, what was it called?

  9. 9
    Marcello Carlin on 10 Jul 2007 #

    It’s Dark Outside

  10. 10
    David C on 1 Nov 2007 #

    I don’t know what you are all talking about! This is one of the best and most perfect songs ever. Hey Jeff W there is nothing wrong with this material and Hatch is a brilliant arranger.

  11. 11
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Nov 2007 #

    Jackie Trent’s recording of Scott Walker’s “Such A Small Love” is one of the most extraordinary things ever.

  12. 12
    jeff w on 2 Nov 2007 #

    I was one of the few who was standing up for Ms Trent, David! And I agree about Hatch.

  13. 13
    Brenda on 18 Mar 2008 #

    I remember the TV series a bit. I think Lana Morrice played the lead, the one with her head in the gas oven. It was round about the same time as the Dickie Henderson Show and had a very similar set.

  14. 14
    Laurence Breedon on 31 Jul 2008 #

    The record came out right on the cusp of puberty, as did the t.v. series from which it came, and both series and song marked me indelibly. I remember Inspector Rose and Oliver Reed, complete with impressive scar, and even a line of dialogue:
    Rose: ‘Would you say you were friendly with him?'(the Oliver Reed character).
    Girl: ‘Well I would have thought sleeping with a guy is about as friendly as you can get!’
    I’d love to see the series again, but I guess the BBC wiped it – though I thought I saw a short excerpt comparatively not long ago.

  15. 15
    AndyPandy on 17 Dec 2008 #

    I’d only heard this a few times before I saw it on here (maybe only then because I tracked it down as one of the few post-Beatles Number Ones I’d never heard). Since then though I’ve been giving it some stick (along with some other stuff this sites got me acquainted with)in my car for a few days now. I don’t think I’ve ever heard it on the radio though.To me it’s filled with such a unique rainy English streets pathos and I’d give it at least a 9.
    And as for her voice I find her refined voice very sexy (as would a lot of men going by how high RP always scores in surveys I’ve seen of the attractiveness to males of different accents – interestingly this doesnt apply to women finding a man speaking this way particularly appealing where IIRC it finishes about halfway down the scale).

    And anyway I find Jackie Trent refining her voice like this a thousand times less annoying than the “dumbed-down” accent ie the more usual embarrassing fake working-class accents employed in modern pop (see Kate Nash/Artic Monkeys/Lily Allen to name just three).
    Oh and if you really want a laugh listen to Joe Strummer when he’s talking in the film ‘Rude Boy’ and remember when you do this person went to public school – he obviously thought to sound suitably proletarian you had to sound thick – talk about unwittingly demeaning the whole of the working class…

  16. 16
    wichita lineman on 17 Dec 2008 #

    In almost total agreement, Andy, thought I’d only give it 7 or 8. It could have been swamped by an orchestral middle-eight, that would’ve been the obvious move, but instead Hatch and Trent keep it clipped, simmering with the same restrained sexuality as Brief Encounter. I wrote this on a Pet Clark post and may as well copy it over: “I know Jackie T sounds a little plummy, but I think the song and arrangement are pure Anglo Bacharach with Jackie playing the schoolteacher stood up in the rain, walking back to her West Hampstead bedsit. A real (non-swinging) sixties London song, to file alongside Donovan’s Young Girl Blues, Lorraine Silver’s Happy Faces, The Kinks’ Big Black Smoke and David Bowie’s London Boys.”

    I must say Petula always sounds like she’s putting on her Julie Andrews accent – take Don’t Sleep In The Subway where she pronounces “can’t” in such a Home Counties manner while the chorus has a standard semi-American lilt, what’s that all about? I find it mumsy rather than sexy, a shame as her run of Hatch/Trent singles is so good.

  17. 17
    Billy Smart on 5 Jan 2011 #

    TOTPWatch: Jackie Trent performed Where Are You Now? on Top Of The Pops on four occasions;

    29 April 1965. Also in the studio that week were; Chubby Checker, Manfred Mann, Marianne Faithful, The Honeycombs and Them. Pete Murray was the host.

    6 May 1965. Also in the studio that week were; The Ivy League, The Searchers and The Seekers. Alan Freeman was the host.

    20 May 1965. Also in the studio that week were; The Dave Clark Five, Sandie Shaw, The Everly Brothers and The Rockin’ Berries, plus The Go Jo’s interpretation of ‘The Clapping Song’. Pete Murray was the host.

    25 December 1965. Also in the studio that week were; Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, The Hollies, The Kinks, The Seekers, The Walker Brothers and Unit 4 + 2. Alan Freeman, David Jacobs, Pete Murray and Jimmy Saville were the hosts.

    None of these editions survive.

  18. 19
    Jimmy the Swede on 27 Jul 2011 #

    # 18 – Thanks for that, Lena. Peter and Gordon’s “True Love Ways” was a magnificent record. I can’t help thinking that Buddy would have loved it. The fact it has been denied a place on our forum (by Jackie) is more than a pity, I think.

  19. 20
    Erithian on 22 Mar 2015 #

    So farewell then Jackie Trent. Not only this prime slice of 60s atmosphere but the Stoke City 1972 League Cup Final song, plus the odd TV theme that’s about to celebrate 30 years on air. RIP.

  20. 21
    lonepilgrim on 25 Jul 2015 #

    the first female solo number one of the year (also self-penned) and refreshing to me because it is so unfamiliar. I like her voice; it gets quite deep in places and there is a particularly British sense of restraint which links it back to ‘Brief Encounter’, as Wichita mentions above.

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