Page last updated at 16:18 GMT, Monday, 7 September 2009 17:18 UK

Manics pen track for Dame Shirley

Dame Shirley Bassey
Dame Shirley has sold more than 135 million records

Welsh rock group the Manic Street Preachers are among a host of stars who have contributed songs to Dame Shirley Bassey's new record.

The Performance, her first full studio album for 20 years, also features songs by the Pet Shop Boys and Gary Barlow.

The 72-year-old last hit the charts in 2007, with an album of covers and remixes called Get The Party Started.

Her latest was produced by British composer David Arnold, who scored the last five James Bond films.

Dame Shirley famously sang three Bond themes - more than any other artist.

Talking about the new album, Arnold said: "All these songs were just songs, until Dame Shirley Bassey sang them.

"There's something about a Bassey performance that can knock the wind out of your sails, make you laugh, make you cry, let you in on the joke or be led to a more exotic place."

Bond reunion

The Manic Street Preachers' track is called The Girl From Tiger Bay, and marks their first writing credit for another artist since Kylie Minogue's Some Kind Of Bliss in 1997.

Dame Shirley Bassey
The diva played Glastonbury in 2007, supporting the Arctic Monkeys

The Pet Shop Boys, who have previously worked with divas such as Liza Minelli and Dusty Springfield, contributed a song called The Performance Of My Life.

Other writers on Dame Shirley's album include KT Tunstall, Richard Hawley and Diamonds Are Forever composers John Barry and Don Black.

Their track, Our Time Is Now, is the first song they have written for the diva since the 1971 James Bond theme.

"It's been quite a few years since Diamonds are Forever," said Black in a statement, "but that lyric still applies to Dame Shirley. She lustres on."

"Whenever the great Terry Wogan plays a Dame Shirley Bassey record, he says 'she doesn't just sing songs, she bites lumps out of them'," he continued.

"I thought of Terry's words as I sat down to write these new songs for her. In other words, you have to give her some meaty emotions to sing about."

The Performance will be released in November.



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