A Timeless Classic Still Melting Hearts in 2015
Spouge, a hybrid of latin, jazz, ska and calypso music, became popular in Barbados in the 1960s. Jackie Opel was the first to take this music to the rest of the Caribbean. With his untimely passing, Spouge lost its momentum. However, a few songs have stood the test of time. Among these timeless classics, “Walk Away From Love” written by Shirley Stewart and Richard Walters, stands out for its poignant lyrics. Interview After The Jump…
Time will tell
I’ll wait and see
What will become of me
I’ll keep on reaching for the stars
Seeking my destiny
Charlene Wiggins: The great Shirley Stewart
Shirley Stewart: Live and in color
Charlene Wiggins: This “Walk Away From Love” is totally different from the one sang by David Ruffin and then Bitty McClean
Shirley Stewart: You are smarter than most people to figure this out. Same title but totally different lyrics, exactly!
Charlene Wiggins: Just curious, who was this song written for and does she know she inspired a classic hit?
Shirley Stewart: I wrote this song on the romantic relationships I was involved in before I got married. It’s a true song about my love life and how you have to move on at times to find your soul mate. I think I finally found it, but it did not happen until my second marriage.
Charlene Wiggins: Sweet, tell me about the recording of this masterpiece.
Shirley Stewart: I came to the US in 1979 and lived in Medford, Massachusetts, I would go back and forth between Boston and New York to do shows. I linked up with the late Tony “TC” Cadogan who was a music director at a college in Brooklyn. He took me to Sound Heights Studio, known mostly for Hard Rock productions; he arranged the music with live instrumentation. The test run was so good that he said if you record it again you will “f-ck it up.” Rest in peace, he was so right, I was so proud that the only recording is the test run, there is so much raw feeling in it.
Charlene Wiggins: Wow, that’s a pretty amazing test run, the voice was crisp and the lyrics..
Shirley Stewart: I wrote the first two verses and the chorus and then I got Writer’s Block. So I consulted with my best friend Richard, we went to school together in Barbados. He knew me so well he finished off the tune and the rest is history.
Charlene Wiggins: Timeless classic indeed. Thank you so much for sharing with Boomshots Magazine.
Shirley Stewart: Thank you for considering my song, “Walk Away From Love.” It still takes me around the world today and for this I am grateful.
*Cover photograph by Charlene Wiggins