Anyone Who Had a Heart: My Life and Music by Burt Bacharach | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Anyone Who Had a Heart: My Life and Music

Anyone Who Had a Heart: My Life and Music

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by Burt Bacharach
     
 

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In his memoir Anyone Who Had a Heart, Burt Bacharach, one of the greatest songwriters of all time, offers a frank and riveting account of his unparalleled life.

From his tumultuous marriages and the tragic suicide of his daughter, to his collaborations with Hal David, Carole Bayer Sager, Neil Diamond, Elvis Costello, and others, Bacharach details his

Overview

In his memoir Anyone Who Had a Heart, Burt Bacharach, one of the greatest songwriters of all time, offers a frank and riveting account of his unparalleled life.

From his tumultuous marriages and the tragic suicide of his daughter, to his collaborations with Hal David, Carole Bayer Sager, Neil Diamond, Elvis Costello, and others, Bacharach details his long-lasting success as well as the never-before-told stories behind the hits.

Candid and emotional, and with 16 pages of color photographs, Anyone Who Had a Heart: My Life and Music is Burt Bacharach in his own words—a powerful and personal look at the award-winning songwriter and composer.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Though he’s clearly a gifted songwriter, Bacharach as a memoirist disappoints. While Bacharach, writing with Greenfield, certainly has a story to tell (he was married to Angie Dickinson; toured with Marlene Dietrich; wrote mega-hits like “Walk on By” and “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head”; won Grammys and Oscars), he’s in too much of a hurry to get to the end of his book to really dig in and tell readers what it was like to cut his teeth in the infamous Brill Building, work with (and sever ties with) his frequent collaborator Hal David, or even address his daughter’s battle with Asperger’s and depression that led her to commit suicide; he prefers to let Angie Dickinson and others do most of the talking. Bacharach spends more time talking about his tennis game and various marriages than his approach to songwriting (much more detail is given to who he worked with on a particular song than the song itself) . Moments of humility and candor, such as a blown opportunity to work with Sinatra, peek through, but it’s not enough to save what could have been an illuminating work on many levels. Amy Schiffman, Intellectual Property Group. (May)
Kirkus Reviews
Reminiscences of a master songwriter. Compiled from interviews conducted by journalist Greenfield (The Last Sultan: The Life and Times of Ahmet Ertegun, 2011, etc.) with Bacharach and his associates, this oral memoir provides a congenial overview of a life devoted to music. Bacharach began reluctantly taking piano lessons as a child, then became smitten with classical and jazz compositions; they would later inspire him to bring a sophisticated palette to his own songs. After a few unspectacular years at the Brill Building, he hit the jackpot with lyricist Hal David; the two went on to create such iconic hits as "Baby, It's You" for the Shirelles, "The Look of Love" for Dusty Springfield and "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head" for B.J. Thomas. Bacharach candidly details his transformation into a household name, his perfectionism in the recording studio and his sometimes-contentious relationships with David and the indomitable Dionne Warwick. The chanteuse acted as a muse for the pair and was aggrieved when they broke up their songwriting partnership after the colossal failure of their score for the 1973 box office bomb Lost Horizon. For decades, breaking up relationships was a specialty of Bacharach's; many of the women in his life, including his first three wives, describe him as exuding a combination of ambition, ambivalence and arrogance. The most moving recollections come from Marlene Dietrich, who highly valued Bacharach as her conductor and accompanist on the road, and from ex-wife Angie Dickinson, who laments Bacharach's decision to institutionalize their autistic daughter, Nikki. The specter of Nikki (who committed suicide in 2007) casts a shadow over the memoir. Whether Greenfield has purposely arranged the book this way or not, intertwining Dickinson's interviews with Bacharach's commentary paints a darker picture of the man whom most people identify with catchy love songs and cameo appearances in the Austin Powers films. Illuminating and gritty, though Bacharach's remarks are occasionally self-serving.
Rolling Stone
“Absorbing.”
Booklist
“This chatty autobiography…tracks the famed composer’s life and career from childhood to the present day.… [H]is contributions to popular music of the twentieth century have been inarguably significant.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062206060
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/07/2013
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

Burt Bacharach is a classically trained pianist whose songs have been recorded by the most influential artists of the twentieth century. He has written more than seventy Top 40 hits and has received Grammy, Oscar, and Emmy awards for his work. The father of three children, he lives in Los Angeles.

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