Before focusing on the recording, let’s look briefly at the song ‘Reviewing The Situation’. It’s engrained in the brains of several generations as one of many classic Lionel Bart compositions threaded throughout the 1968 box-office smash Oliver! Fagin, played by Ron Moody, performed a darkly comic interpretation which is hard to forget.
The year before Oliver! was released (and no doubt with a view to cashing in on the film…), Sandie Shaw recorded an up-tempo version. Great things were expected as the song title was also assigned to the album title. The scheduled tie-in single was cancelled, leaving a handful of picture-sleeved demos in circulation. These 45s are highly sought after today. However, the Sandie Shaw recording owes EVERYTHING to Jacki Bond…
Jacki was a secretary working for Miki Dallon at Strike Records but her true yearning was to be a recording artist in her own right. She did indeed have a single out via the Columbia label in late 1965 and a brace on Strike in 1966. Despite these being decent girl-pop offerings, all failed to make the charts (though a couple have found retrospective favour on the Northern Soul/6Ts Club scenes, namely ‘Why Can’t I Love Him’ and ‘Don’t You Worry’).
Early 1967 saw Jacki back in the studio recording thee genre-defying version of ‘Reviewing The Situation’; mod, jazz, beat, soul, it has it all, delivered in a dancefloor-friendly manner and boasting a massive production. It is easy to see why Sandie Shaw’s management felt this adaption would suit their client.
Alas, Jacki’s recording was shelved due to the financial collapse of Strike Records. Jacki jumped ship to Larry Page’s Page One Records and with a name change to Judi Scott, released a version of the much covered bubblegum beat track ‘Billy Sunshine’. Jacki is also believed to be the vocalist on the George Best tribute single ‘I Love George Best’ by The Devoted.
So, on its 50th anniversary, Spoke Records are proud to release Jacki Bond’s ‘Reviewing The Situation’ on 7″ vinyl for the very first time.