JOHN WALKER – \”If I Promise\” / \”I See Love In You\” (Philips BF 1612) October 1967

A sparkling disc from John Walker, which personally I prefer to his previous hit \”Annabella\”. It\’s a real blues-chaser, with a bouncy Latin-flecked rhythm, emphasised by a delicious rippling guitar figure, flute and tambourine. And there\’s a fat, fruity brass section adding depth to the accompaniment.

A rip roaring slap happy song it receives a lively personality treatment from John, who goes up still further in my estimation as a result of this effort. Don\’t think the song has got what it takes to make the No.1 spot or even 2 or 3…….. But it\’s zest, polish and uninhibited gaiety are enough to make it a comfortable hit.
FLIP: A bluesy approach to this beat-ballad, enhanced by organ, pizzicato strings and solo guitar. Sung with sincerity and deep emotion. Appealing!
(NME review – 21/10/67)

It\’s not often that I hear a song once and really flip over it, but that\’s what happened to me with \”If I Promise\”. Tom Jones was going to do this as a single a few months ago, but he was on his ballad kick at the time, and this is not a ballad. It was once recorded in the States by Jerry Reed, but I\’ve given it a smoother kind of arrangement. Hope everyone likes it.
(John Walker – RAVE magazine – November 1967)

Another disappointment this week is John\’s follow-up to \”Annabella\” which I thought was pretty and liked. I don\’t really think his voice is terribly suited to this light, fast material. He sounds vaguely uncomfortable throughout the record.
It has a lovely opening with warm guitar and a shuffling South American rhythm, and it does start off well, especially that very American trick of soft double tracking and gentle brass. But the chorus lets it down a bit. Maybe it\’s one of those records that insinuates itself with you.
(Disc & Music Weekly review – 14/10/67)

Guitar intro and John sings rather subtly most of the way…nice sprightly tempo and a good song, featuring parts of duetting with himself. Every bit as strong as his original solo item and a cert for the charts. Nice arrangement too and backing.
FLIP: Self-penned and moody old love song. Very well performed.
(Record Mirror review – 21/10/67)

UK Chart Position: None

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