Cathy Dennis

REVIEW: ‘Move To This’ – Cathy Dennis

“Move To This” – A retrospective review of Cathy Dennis’ 1991 debut album.

Singers and songwriters from Norwich are few and far between. Recently Sigala has proven enormously successful in both clubs and commercially with his debut album “Brighter Days” and the many singles that have emanated from it. But prior to the 1980’s, pretty much no one from East Anglia’s ‘capital’ had ever bothered the charts. That all changed in 1989 when ‘dancing’ Danny D aka D-Mob released his single “C’mon Get My Love” and enlisted the vocals of Norwich born singer Cathy Dennis. The song climbed to No.15 in the UK but more importantly topped the US dance chart (his third single to do so there).

Cathy had formed a close partnership and friendship with Danny and that would become pivotal in her own ambition to break out as a singer in her own right. Soon after “C’mon Get My Love” was released, Cathy and Danny co-wrote and produced the song “Just Another Dream” which Cathy would release in early 1990 as her debut single. Sadly the single stalled at No.93 in the UK and did nothing worldwide. Undeterred, Cathy returned to Danny for comfort and would sing vocals on his next release “That’s The Way Of The World” which would make No.5 on the US dance chart and No.48 on the UK singles chart.

Cathy tried again with “Just Another Dream” in October 1990, this time making No.95 in the UK. The song was, however, accepted with open arms in America where it would climb to No.9 on the singles chart and No.2 on the dance chart. By now writing and recording for her debut album was complete and Cathy was eager to share this with her new found fame. Released in December 1990 in The US, the album entered the chart at No.173 but would take six months to finally peak at No.67, spending a total of 40 weeks on the chart and selling over 400,000 copies there.

The second single “Touch Me (All Night Long)” was the next to be released in America in January 1991, which was a drastic re-write of US singer Fonda Rae’s 1984 original, binning everything but the chorus and bringing in top club producer Shep Pettibone (Madonna) to give it added weight. Fonda had taken her song to No.70 in the US and No.49 in the UK, but with mass marketing Cathy improved on that and some. The song peaked at No.2 in late February and topped the dance chart. It wasn’t released in the UK till the following month but any fears the UK market was uninterested in her music would soon be forgotten when the song shot up the top 40 to peak at No.5.

“Move To This” was finally released in the UK the following month and would peak at No.3 selling over 250,000 copies and spending 35 weeks on the album chart. They say third time lucky and it was for “Just Another Dream” in the UK. By now heavily re-produced by Danny D, the single was re-re-released in June 1991 and with big promotion by BBC Radio 1, it quickly entered the singles chart, eventually spending two weeks at No.13 in July.

Cathy released the down tempo number “Too Many Walls” as the third single in September that year and got her third consecutive top 10 hit in America when the song made No.8 there and topped the US Adult Contemporary chart. In the UK it peaked at No.17 the following month. The fourth and final release, “Everybody Move” came at the end of what had been Cathy’s year and would peak at No.25 in the UK, No.90 on the US singles chart and No.41 on the dance chart.

Apart from the four singles “Move To This” is a superb collection of ten early 90’s pop/dance classics. From the cheesy “Taste My Love” to the jazz enthused title track and the soulful ballad “Tell Me”, the album is one non-stop riot of mature pop anthems that have not aged one bit, nearly thirty years on from its release. Cathy has only released two further studio albums since with varying degrees of success, “Into The Skyline” in 1992 and “Am I The Kinda Girl?” in 1997. She seems to of abandoned being a pop star for songwriting since the late 90’s, and why not, when you can boast of multiple number one’s with the group S Club 7 and the colossal force of “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head“, Cathy is a self made millionaire many times over. But there were times before the world uttered “la la la” over and over to itself, times when Cathy produced an ‘irresistible’ collection of great pop and dance tunes that we all love and still do. Is this for real, or is it just another dream?

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So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!