By Richie Unterberger

In 1963, Dionne Warwick had established herself as one of the brightest new stars in both pop and soul with her first hit single, "Don't Make Me Over." Her debut album, Presenting Dionne Warwick (also reissued on CD by Collectors' Choice Music), was full of outstanding songs and arrangements by producers Burt Bacharach and Hal David. It hadn't, however, produced a follow-up hit single on the order of "Don't Make Me Over," even though some of its songs would be hits for other artists, particularly "Wishin' and Hopin,'" which Dusty Springfield took into the American Top Ten in mid-1964. By that time, however, Warwick herself had scored her first Top Ten hit with "Anyone Who Had a Heart," the title track of her second album—which, like her first LP, had a number of strong tunes that sounded as if they could have been hits as well, whether written by Bacharach-David or other composers.

     "Anyone Who Had a Heart" had first been played to Warwick by Bacharach as a work in progress at his New York apartment. Urged by Dionne to finish it, the song was given its final lyrics by David as Bacharach and Warwick rehearsed an entirely different number in Burt's living room. Bacharach and David's pens were gushing with standards by 1964, but even in their impressive catalog, "Anyone Who Had a Heart" is a standout. Its impressively bittersweet, unpredictably shifting melody; its shifts in time signature from 5/4 to 4/4 to 7/8 and back to 5/4; its brief, smoky sax solo; the gorgeous orchestration and swelling background vocals; and Warwick's typically impassioned vocal—all added up to an instant classic, one which remains among the highlights of both her and Bacharach-David's careers.

    Unknown to most American listeners at the time, "Anyone Who Had a Heart" caused some controversy when it was covered in the UK almost right away by Cilla Black, who took it all the way to #1 in Britain in early 1964. Warwick's own records did not enjoy as wide a distribution in the UK as they might have, and she was peeved that British singers were reaping a lot of sales with the same songs. Paul Howes's The Complete Dusty Springfield quotes Warwick as observing, "Cilla Black with 'Anyone Who Had a Heart,' Sandie Shaw with 'Reach Out for Me [actually it was '(There's) Always Something There to Remind Me" that Shaw had covered for a British chart-topper), Dusty Springfield with 'Wishin' & Hopin''...the list goes on and on, doesn't it? I just felt that it was very expensive demonstration records that I was making for European artists to enjoy and reap success from, but subsequently it got to the point where the audience became curious as to where the original came from. It was fortunate for me that whenever they played Dusty's song of 'Wishin' & Hopin' they would play mine behind her and make comment on the fact that, what we all knew in the States, if I had during the course of the recording coughed or sneezed, that would have been an intricate part of what they recorded."

    Springfield, it should be added, did a mighty fine version of "Anyone Who Had a Heart" herself on her first album. She'd considered doing it as a single after she and her manager saw Warwick singing it live at the Olympia Theatre in Paris, but opted to put out "Stay Awhile" instead. In The Complete Dusty Springfield, Dusty remarked, "I'm a terrible pessimist and, although I loved it at first, like my other songs, I had cold feet and decided not to do it after all"—though of course she did soon relent and at least cut it as an LP track. If it's any consolation to Warwick, however, it's her version of "Anyone Who Had a Heart" that's now considered the definitive one—in the US, the UK, and everywhere else in the world.

    When it came time to build an LP around the hit, Warwick would, again, offer a set considerably stronger than the norm for the era. In one respect, however, the album was typical of the somewhat lower standards of packaging typical of pop-rock LPs of the mid-1960s. For three of the songs were not new recordings, or even new to LP, but had already appeared on her debut album, the recycling of tracks already issued on long-players being a common practice back in those days. At least, however, the three songs chosen—"This Empty Place," "Don't Make Me Over," and "I Cry Alone"—were all outstanding Bacharach-David numbers, one of which of course had already been a sizable hit. As Warwick was a considerably bigger star by the time her second album came out than she had been at the time of Presenting Dionne Warwick, at least this might have given some listeners a chance to hear some goodies that they could well have missed the first time around.

    The rest of the material did include three additional Bacharach-David numbers that, while not quite up to the standards of most of their hit singles, were satisfyingly tuneful and sumptuously arranged and orchestrated. "Any Old Time of Day" was arguably the best of these, and gifted with a cover by jazz great Stan Getz on his album What the World Needs Now: Stan Getz Plays Bacharach and David. "I Could Make You Mine" (with sister Dee Dee Warwick on backup vocals), in contrast, has a little more of a throwback feel to the kind of arrangements used by the Shirelles, and "Please Make Him Love Me" was actually a leftover, previously issued as a 1963 B-side to "Make the Music Play."

    While Dionne Warwick's recordings for the Scepter label are understandably noted for including many tracks that were written and produced by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, it's important to realize that she did both cut material by other composers and, in her earliest Scepter recordings, occasionally use other producers. Anyone Who Had a Heart included five tracks that were neither written nor produced by Bacharach-David (though the identity of the precise producers remains unknown, other than that they were on Scepter's staff). Yet these five songs are both of a respectable quality and of a piece with the orchestrated pop-soul sound Bacharach-David were establishing on their own Warwick-produced sides.

    "Shall I Tell Her," penned by the top Brill Building songwriting team of Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman (most famous for the hits they wrote for the Drifters), has a bossa nova feel that Warwick and Bacharach-David would periodically revisit over the rest of the 1960s. "Gettin' Ready for the Heartbreak," about the poppiest item on the LP, had been previously done by Chuck Jackson, one of the biggest stars on the Scepter/Wand label. The gospel-tinged, obscure gem "Oh Lord, What Are You Doing to Me" was likewise recorded by a few of Warwick's labelmates (Tommy Hunt, Big Maybelle, and Maxine Brown), and co-written by Luther Dixon, an important figure at Scepter as both a writer and producer (particularly for the Shirelles). It was common at soul-pop labels like Motown and Scepter to record numerous different versions of the same song with different artists, and "Put Yourself in My Place" is yet another example, having also been cut by Maxine Brown and Big Maybelle, though it doesn't take anything away from the quality of the tune. At least "Mr. Heartbreak" wasn't done by anyone but Dionne, benefiting from a gorgeous arrangement featuring spidery guitar, violins, and booming drum rumbles.

    Despite its quality, and despite being issued at a time when Warwick's star was dramatically on the rise, Anyone Had a Heart would not be her first LP to make the album charts. That honor would fall to her third album, 1964's Make Way for Dionne Warwick, also reissued on CD by Collectors' Choice Music. -- Richie Unterberger

contents copyright Richie Unterberger, 2000-2010
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