Cover Versions, Hard-to-find

Kiss My Shades*

My previous Sandie Shaw post was surprisingly (for me) one of the most popular downloaded music posts on this entire blog. I mentioned that Sandie Shaw doing The Smiths’ ‘Hand In Glove’ would turn up at some point….and here it is.  

Released in April 1984, this version of ‘Hand In Glove’ was promoted as a Sandie Shaw solo release, although it is essentially The Smiths with Sandie Shaw coming straight off the bench as some kind of super-sub. All those Smiths fans helped the single reach the dizzy heights of number 27. Even the cover art of the single is Smithsy in appearance. I’d imagine all Smiths aficionados would have the 3 Smiths tracks Sandie covered by now, but if not, here you go… 


The 7” featured 2 tracks – the lead track and her version of ‘I Don’t Owe You Anything’. ‘Hand In Gloveis a reverb-drenched bash-along that Siouxsie Sioux would be proud of. The lead guitar riff sounds like a glockenspiel, and I mean that in a good way. The outro is terrific too. Different to the original. Not better. Not worse. Just different 


Apart from the unusual introduction, Sandie’s version of ‘I Don’t Owe You Anything’ sounds an awful lot like the Troy Tate produced version that was intended for their first album before The Smiths binned it at the last minute. Maybe, way back in ’84 before Bongo, Sting and all those other worthless eco-warriers, The Smiths were into recycling their old junk, giving it to someone more deserving. It’s got a creepy, churchy-sounding keyboard part playing through the background and tons of jangling, clipped 12 string Rickenbacker. And the final chord is niiiiiiiiice. Sandie’s got a nice warble to her voice too. I like this version a lot. 


The 12” featured Jeaneas an extra track. More acoustic than The Smiths, it’s just Johnny n’ Sandie, until some crooner in a big quiff and national health specs starts yodeling towards the end. No heavenly choirs, not for me and not for you, they sing. But I’m not so sure. Sandie Shaw’s 3 Smiths covers are amongst some of my favourite records.    


Forgive me father, for I have sing-ed

Around the time of the record’s release, Morrissey said, “I met her a few months ago and it seemed perfectly natural for me to seize the opportunity and ask her to work with us and she was incredibly eager and incredibly enthusiastic. She really liked the songs and she was very eager to do it. So, it’s happened and I’m very pleased.” Four years later, post-Smiths and bored of Smiths-obsessed journalists, he cut short one inquisitive interviewer with, “It was so great for me personally that I don’t actually remember it happening“. 


Is that real leather she’s wearing?

*   ’Kiss My Shades’ was the wee message scratched into the run-off groove of the 7”, trainspotters.   

7 thoughts on “Kiss My Shades*”

  1. Now this really piques my interest. Yes I was a diehard Smiths fan once upon a while ago… at least until 1987. I should know this, but wasn’t she the “cover star” on one of the Smiths’ releases? At any rate, nice job here, and thanks as always for the share.

  2. Hey maestro,

    thanks for such a wonderful blog and music for all of us, who don’t put our listening into boxes and categories. You really are an expert and then some. Well, since you know all these things and have such a wealth of rare stuff lying around, here’s my question. Out of my music collection of some 700 vinyl records and some 1200 cds, my desert island disc is Talk Talk’s Spirit of eden, you’ll agree it is a magnificent work. Were there any outtakes or other unreleased tracks from those sessions that took nine months in complete isolation and darkness? Other than that Mark Hollis is living in Wimbledon part of London a quiet family life, nothing much is known, by any chance would you know what the great man is doing nowadays or if his retirement from music is final. Thanks and take care.

  3. What was so good about this was the fact that it took the song into the charts and onto TOTP where Johnny and Andy played barefoot in tribute to Sandie’s style of days of old.

    I’ve also seen some great but cringeworthy stuff on You Tube where the band (avec Morrissey) appear on a kiddies TV programme, ‘surprisingly’ bump into Sandie, and then there’s a vesrion of ‘Jeanne’

    is the link for it.

  4. I really dig your blog. Ive been on a massive search for these tracks, and ive not been able to track down any hard copies or mp3s anywhere. Sandie Shaw’s version of Jeane is one of my all time favorites (sadly lost 6 months ago when my hard drive crashed). If you could possibly re-post these tracks, i would always think of you kindly!

  5. I have the hand in glove 7″ single and i was wondering where the “Kiss my Shades” etching came from… and now i know


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