One of the Last Things Peggy Lee Did Was With Gilbert O’Sullivan - Noise11.com
Gilbert O'Sullivan

One of the Last Things Peggy Lee Did Was With Gilbert O’Sullivan

by Paul Cashmere on July 18, 2022

in News

Gilbert O’Sullivan has duets with Mick Hucknall and K.T. Tunstall on his new album ‘Driven’ but his first duet was one of the last recordings of Jazz legend Peggy Lee.

The song was ‘Can’t Think Straight’ and appeared on Gilbert’s 10th album ‘Sounds of the Loop’ released in 1991.

Gilbert O’Sullivan tells Noise11.com, “The great thing about that was, at the time in the 80s, I had never done a duet at that point. Someone said to me ‘you should really do a duet with on that particular album’. When we decided ‘I Can’t Think Straight’ would have been a good one, I didn’t want to pick a contemporary singer at the time and I thought ‘who would I really like’”.

He thought Peggy Lee would be perfect. “I love Peggy Lee,” he said. “I bought her Latin albums and she is in my Top 10 of the greats. So I thought let’s approach Peggy. We sent her the tape, she loved the track and we flew to New York to record her”.

Gilbert said he was surprised at how frail she was. “I was a bit surprised when she turned up in a wheelchair. I wasn’t quite expecting that. And she had an oxygen tank with her. She was quite frail. Peggy was in her late 70s, maybe early 80s at this point. It was magical to see her”.

A film crew was there to capture the moment. Peggy was transformed to look like early Peggy for the footage. “We filmed it for a video after we did her vocal,’ he said. “The make-up lady spent two and a half to three hours with her. They turned that fragile person into the Peggy Lee we know and associate with and she loved the fact that she was pampered so much. It was a great experience. I loved every minute. We filmed it. In live concerts over the years we have put the screen up where she is singing her part and then I’m singing my part live. We may do that again in the future”.

Peggy made one more album after that. Her final album ‘Moments Like These’ was released in 1993. She passed away in 2002 at age 81.

Gilbert O’Sullivan’s new album ‘Driven’ also features duets with Mick Hucknall and K.T. Tunstall.

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