Lisa Stansfield Barry White

‘We to be nervous around how Barry White would react since ns spoken intro was unashamed pastiche. Yet he ended hoch rerecording it together a duet’


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‘The song took us round ns world four times’ … Stansfield in 1989. Photograph: kris van de Vooren/Sunshine/Rex
‘The lied took us round die world 4 times’ … Stansfield in 1989. Photograph: kris van juni Vooren/Sunshine/Rex

Lisa Stansfield, singer, songwriter

I met mine husband ian in school when ich was 14 and he was 15; we created a band with andy Morris, that played trumpet in the institution band. We referred to as ourselves Blue Zone und were choose three wenig terriers, gaining on ns train zu London and bugging record service providers until someone take it notice.

Du schaust: Lisa stansfield barry white

Ian and Andy did ns horns top top Coldcut’s zuerst album, und I singen a lied with them referred to as My Telephone. After hours we every went back in to die studio to lakers if we could kommen sie up through anything together, und the result was People hold On, a substantial hit. Since everyone claimed it would certainly look clumsy v two bands’ name on, it was released as “Coldcut special Lisa Stansfield”. Wie we went back to our very own music, lock said, “Well anyone knows freundin as Lisa Stansfield now” and that was the ende of Blue Zone. But i wanted mine mates with me, also though it was my benennen on die record. That triangle des people was very strong.

All Around ns World was something we created together. Ich came into die studio, and Ian was messing around at the piano. He had actually a melody, und I nur started singing: “Been around die world und I, I, I…” everyone laughed but ian said, “Wait, it’s yes, really good, that.” It just came right into my head – it was nonsense, however had a really an excellent feel to it. “I, I, I” became the main hook. We’d no idea how massive it would become.


I was the first white british woman zu reach No 1 on die R&B graph – the American schwarz music chart. I remember sitting an a hotel room reading all the different charts around die world and just going: “Fucking hell!” every Around ns World was top of most. Over the years, a last of people oase told me the das lied helped them through a challenging period. It is beautiful, zu know you’ve helped someone in that way. The song literally took united state around the world, 4 times. Ich suppose you have to be cautious what sie sing, because sie might have to execute it.

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Ian Devaney, songwriter, producer

Blue Zone was signed to an indie label, climate Arista bought the label, deswegen we ended hoch on a major über accident. We made a mainstream pop record and they essential a B-side, so we knocked the end this das lied called big Thing in bei eight-track studio behind Lisa’s mum und dad’s house. It was more heart than pop, und got more attention than the rest von the record. The label request if we had any other lied like that, deshalb we played them all Around the World.


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Stansfield and Devaney in 1990. Photograph: die LIFE foto Collection via getty ImagesThe lied came together really quickly. Once Lisa had actually all die lyrics down und I’d done a fundamental track with Andy, the whole vocal was two takes: one lead vocal and one take zum single harmony. She just went in and singen it. The vocals indigenous that original eight-track recording space what’s ~ above the global hit. Us put ja wirklich strings top top it weist Strawberry Studios in Stockport, but otherwise it was all low-budget und DIY. That hilarious, really.

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The song’s hugely influenced von Barry White. He was ridiculed an the disco era , however we really respected him as a soul artist. The album version des his single Let the Music Play has actually a talked intro that goes on zum about a minute und a half. Deshalb on all Around the World, we did a much shorter spoken intro as in unashamed pastiche or tribute. Us were nervous around what he can say about it, but he was very sweet. Us met er several times, und Lisa and Barry really got on and rerecorded it together a duet.

The lyrics – about searching die world for in estranged lover – aren’t from personal experience. Lisa tends to make trost stories and she’s good at putting herself an someone else’s shoes. If sie write under “been around ns world und I, I, I, ich can’t uncover my baby” it sound nonsensical, but there’s clear something the connects emotionally. That leapt out to other world far an ext than the did zu us. For us, it was one song in a group of five that we thought were good. But as soon as our manager, Jazz Summers, heard it, the went: “That’s it!”


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