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Download Fire And Rain: The James Taylor Story epub

by Ian Halperin

Many musicians sing about heartache, despair, and confusion, but few have experienced those feelings more intensely than James Taylor, who rose from a childhood of privilege as the son of an affluent medical school dean to become a modern-day troubadour and pop superstar.

When he was seventeen years old, his demons led him to a Massachusetts mental institution where he confronted them the only way he knew how, by writing his first songs. Thirty years later, Taylor's songs are among the most popular in the annals of music, but the demons are still with him.

But unlike many of his contemporaries who faced a similar struggle, Taylor managed to emerge as an inspirational figure. Fire and Rain traces this remarkable path, including his troubled marriage to pop star Carly Simon and the premature alcoholism-related death of his brother: Taylor's ten-month stay in the exclusive private psychiatric institution where he finished high school; His self-imposed exile to England where he submitted some of his music to the Beatles' Apple Records, which signed him to his first record contract in 1968. Paul McCartney mentored Taylor's early career; The story behind his second album, Sweet Baby James, which contained the song "Fire and Rain" about the hopelessness of mental illness and suicide; As Taylor's fame increased, so did his problems with heroin, alcohol, and mental illness. In the seventies, the singer nearly fell over the edge many times.

Download Fire And Rain: The James Taylor Story epub
ISBN: 0806523484
ISBN13: 978-0806523484
Category: Biographies
Subcategory: Arts & Literature
Author: Ian Halperin
Language: English
Publisher: Citadel; Revised, Updated edition (January 1, 2003)
Pages: 288 pages
ePUB size: 1264 kb
FB2 size: 1310 kb
Rating: 4.8
Votes: 788
Other Formats: txt docx rtf azw

Like others on here, I am a huge James Taylor fan enjoying the chance to have a chat with him after a recent show in a nearby town and getting a photo with him. This book is an insult to the man, his family, his friends and his music. It is so poorly researched, it doesn't say much for the Rolling Stone Magazine Award for Investigative Journalism if they gave THIS author their award. Were they on the same dope James used to enjoy! It is so poorly written, does not flow in anything like a sensible order (and is often incorrect for when events actually happened), is repetitive and is based on supposedly suggested comments. The factual errors are laughable. Don't waste your money on this book! To the author, get Sheila Weller's 'Girls Like Us' and learn how to write a well researched biography.
Author apparently is a BIG JT fan and is pretty biased. LONG accounts from music sidemen, fan club members, etc. Very hard to read. Even the pictures were stock and had nothing to do with events in his life. I'll wait for the movie.
This book was exactly what I was expecting, being a JT's fan. Couldn't stop reading from beginning to end. I liked the author's style, too.
This story seemed legitimate, however, I noticed (after beginning the piece) some pretty significant errors in reporting. Dates were wrong and threw the story off by a whole decade at times. A decade! I had my doubts when I spotted this mistake. How on earth did this get by the editor? The other thing I noticed was that there were a lot of drug references, however, it seemed the focus of the book. I know that he wasn't a saint and has had regrets, but was it that bad? I have to say that I am disappointed.
I so very much wanted to like this book. When reading biographies of contemporary persons, I try to remember to take what I find with a grain of salt and be generous of the author's minor misconceptions and mistakes. For one, we have individuals writing bios who are trained as journalists. Stylistically, there is a conflict. Journalists opine, write tight paragraphs out of necessity, and do not have time or space to develop a narrative.

Biographies need a narrative treatment. It's a form which needs to retell and recreate conversations and situations. Details are everything. When I see writer X of Such and Thus Magazine authoring a biography, I understand what I am getting myself into.

My patience is waning.

"Fire and Rain" has some documentation. There is some worthy content. We learn a few new details. All good. However, I cringe every few pages over grammatical sloppiness. The greater crime is a lack of fact-checking. It causes one to question the author and publisher's motives. Do we get this thing written, ship product out, and accept the shortcomings for the cash? Don't publishers employ editors anymore? Mean, picky editors who force accountability and some conformity to basic standards?

I'll offer an example of this miserable lack of fact-checking.

On page 124, the author is discussing the anticipation surrounding Taylor's follow-up record to his first release, Sweet Baby James. Mud Slide Slim and the Blue Horizon made a huge impression. Sophomore albums usually sell fewer units than first releases, and that is an accepted pattern in the record business. I run into problems in the following sentence from paragraph three.

"Solo artists like Jackson Browne and Cat Stevens were enjoying much-publicized revivals, so it wasn't difficult to predict that Taylor's new album would see massive media exposure."

The problem is this. Although Cat Stephen's 1971 release, Teaser and the Fire Cat was his fifth album, he had not yet taken off in the United States. The two singles from the first three albums reached chart positions of 118 and 115. He did much better in the UK. In 1970, Wild World was 11. This is a pattern of an artist riding up in a nice arch. Teaser was the evidence of Stevens arrival, not, as the author states, a revival.

As for Jackson Browne, the author is egregiously wrong. In 1971, Browne released his *first* album, the eponymous Jackson Browne, fondly referred, to his initial chagrin, as Saturate Before Using. It was a much anticipated release in the industry from the man who had composed hits for other artists.

Borrow the book from the library or go to BookMooch as I did, where folks trade books. But keep the laptop handy because you'll find yourself wanting to confirm certain details.
I was really curious about this one, and buying it, I thought... "Wow. I've always been Curious about him." Well, this book gives you a few answers, but for the most part it's a boring look at an obviously exciting and dramatic life story. And what is up with Halperin's ridiculous over-use of "Taylor" to describe James. It's almost as if he has no real variance in his writing style. I would also wager that there are quotes attributed to Taylor that weren't actually uttered, such as this gem... "It's time for me to express myself with my music now." I mean, come on...Who Says That? No one. Sorry Halperin. Stick to covering Dead Grunge rockers,'cause that's really your forte. Useless Claptrap, and a waste of American Dollareedoos. For Shaaaaame!
This book isn't worth the paper it's printed on. I hesitate to even put my two cents in because I don't want to encourage anyone else to buy this trash- even out of morbid curiosity- but- this is the stuff of supermarket tabloids- if you really want to gain insight into the life and work of James Taylor- look elsewhere. Halperin can't write and his "quotes" are so obviously made up this "bio" doesn't even pass the straight face test.I feel like I should apologize to Taylor and his family for even reading it. Absolute trash- don't waste you time and money.