Bacharach: Maestro! The Life of a Pop Genius by Michael Brocken

By Michael Brocken

Overlaying the well known and public parts of Burt Bacharach's existence, in addition to these elements that experience formerly been hidden from the media, this e-book examines a celebrated occupation spanning 50 years. lined intimately are Bacharach's formerly undocumented formative years; his paintings with lyricist Hal David; his golden years composing hit after hit; his a variety of relationships with ladies and his 4 marriages, together with these to Angie Dickinson and Carole Bayer Sager; and his contemporary collaborations with Elvis Costello and Noel Gallagher.

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Sample text

It wasn’ t a great music school at the time, it really wasn’ t. I felt a little bit lost there. But there was good stuff going on musically – what’s that street called, St. Catherine? At Rockhead’ s [a night club] you had Maynard Fer guson and you had Oscar Peterson. So you had good people. The music was exciting […] being in Montreal was very dif ferent from being in the States. It felt a little more European. (Bacharach to Ward, Ottawa Citizen, 2001) Certainly Burt confirms that, for him, while the three years were not exactly wasted, they were not the most memorable of his life, either!

But Connif f was never going to attract a younger demographic with these tunes. There was absolutely no way that 30 A House Is [Definitely] A Home! – A Little Context a younger audience of the 1950s was going to buy records that effectively reflected the repertoires of their parents or older siblings. Sure, the sounds were enticing, but the material? Do me a favour! In fact, listening now after all of these years, one gets the distinct impression that Conniff had little or no interest in the material per se.

This pure alchemy was achieved by combining the base metals of brass with the Conniff choir’s golden throats. (Lanza, 1995:106) It was this sound that became something of a precursor to that of Burt Bacharach. The arrangement of female voices and muted brass stabs was certainly not lost on Burt. One listen to, for example, Connif f’s arrangement of ‘It Might As Well Be Spring’ (1959) gives the game away. Apart from being full of the usual do-doos and ba-baas, this arrangement contains many elements that are familiar as Bacharach motifs.

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