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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wondrous Face
This is the story of Ronald Wycherley - stage name Billy Fury. In his time, when he was one of impressario Larry Parnes 'stable' of stars, Billy Fury was a huge star. Born in Liverpool, coincidentally, Fury attended the same primary school and was in the same class as Richard Starkey (stage name Ringo Starr!) and both had a childhood plagued by illness and missed long...
Published on 15 April 2013 by S Riaz

versus
1.0 out of 5 stars I was very disappointed
In the 1960s I was a big fan of Billy Fury and was looking forward to reading his biography. This book was labelled "The Billy Fury Story" but was, in fact, not much more than a discography - almost entirely a list of his records, who was backing him and how successful the record was.

I would like to have read more about the man himself and his life.
Published 5 months ago by C. Andrew


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wondrous Face, 15 April 2013
By 
S Riaz "S Riaz" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
This is the story of Ronald Wycherley - stage name Billy Fury. In his time, when he was one of impressario Larry Parnes 'stable' of stars, Billy Fury was a huge star. Born in Liverpool, coincidentally, Fury attended the same primary school and was in the same class as Richard Starkey (stage name Ringo Starr!) and both had a childhood plagued by illness and missed long periods of schooling. In Billy Fury's case, he had rheumatic fever (often linked to poor housing) and his illness gave him a lifetime of heart problems and bad health. Finding education difficult and frustrating, he lacked an ability to conform which followed him in life and resulted in his being sacked from several early jobs.

Life improved for Billy when he met Larry Parnes and was invited to join one of his package tours. He moved to London - to live in Parnes flat with other artists. In 1959, when Billy Fury joined the tour, Larry Parnes was the biggest manager in showbusiness and his stars included Tommy Steele, Marty Wilde, Vince Eager, Dickie Pride, Johnny Gentle (the only artist to have the Beatles back him on a tour when Billy Fury turned them down Johnny Gentle and The Beatles - First Ever Tour) and Joe Brown (the only artist who refused Larry Parnes attempts to rename him). This book covers Billy Fury's career in enough depth to be approved of by every fan - his TV appearances, every recording, films and tours. Although Parnes was a good enough manager in his day, he controlled every aspect of his artists lives and did little to promote them outside of the UK. Billy Fury also caused some of his own problems by missing shows and appearances - often due to illness to be fair - and there is a hilarious dispute between Parnes and the BBC over various problems.

Despite later health, financial and personal problems, Billy Fury was a great star in his day. He was on the Gene Vincent/Eddie Cochran UK tour in 1960, when Cochran was killed in a car accident (Things Do Go Wrong), produced the acclaimed album, "The Sound of Fury", which Keith Richards called, "one of the greatest rock'n'roll albums of it's era" and wrote many of his own songs. By the time he released his single, "Because of Love" in 1962, it stalled at number 18. Parnes insisted that Fury would release 3 LP's, 3 or 4 EP's and 4 singles in 1963 - "that's definite". What he did not take into account was another mid-chart record released at the same time as "Because of Love". It was called "Love me Do", by a band Larry Parnes had once rejected as management material, called The Beatles. Fury had his last top 5 hit in 1963, but despite many falling by the wayside, Billy survived the Merseybeat onslaught. However, his career, and his health, declined. Fury later blamed all his problems on Parnes, notorious for keeping his artists on a short leash - and low wages. I would love to see a proper biography of Larry Parnes, as he strikes me as being one of the most interesting people from that era, much more so than most of his artists to be honest. This book is, though, a celebration of Billy Fury's talent and a good appraisal of his career. Spencer Leigh writes with humour and charm and I am delighted to see his books being republished on kindle.
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4.0 out of 5 stars ... roll years had a lot of stars but none better than BILLY FURY, 3 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
Rock n roll years had a lot of stars but none better than BILLY FURY ...With Larry Parnes Rock shows with artists like Marty Wilde , Joe Brown Johnny Gentle , Duffy Power a full show of many stars ...It was shows like OH BOY , THANK YOUR LUCKY STARS SIX FIVE SPECIAL .that produced the British Talent of 50s & 60s This book i found told the of rise from Dock yards of Liverpool and his illness that took is life at the far tuo early age of 42 ....A Great artist and Perfommer that i was able to meet Billy many times and travelled with him to some of his shows around the Midlands once in his clapped out American car ..Great memories ....The book is well worth reading
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1.0 out of 5 stars I was very disappointed, 31 Jan. 2015
By 
C. Andrew (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
In the 1960s I was a big fan of Billy Fury and was looking forward to reading his biography. This book was labelled "The Billy Fury Story" but was, in fact, not much more than a discography - almost entirely a list of his records, who was backing him and how successful the record was.

I would like to have read more about the man himself and his life.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Billy Fury, 14 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
I chose to read this book because I am a Billy Fury fan and on saying that I was disappointed by the writer, he seemed more interested in writing about his (Billy Fury' s) music then about his life, though he did dodge between his life and his music I found it boring to the end. Would I recommend it - no.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very readable, loved it., 6 Nov. 2014
This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
Hugely enjoyable, conjures up a wonderful time and name checks load of 60s names. Great anecdotes and with a real sense of the late lamented Billy. Well written and witty.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars, 27 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
Boring, to any other pop stars mentioned, not enough Billy Fury.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wondrous Place, 24 Feb. 2014
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
I chose this book because i believe Billy Fury was one of our greatest singers who is so sadly missed.
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent, 19 July 2014
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This review is from: Wondrous Face - The Billy Fury Story (Kindle Edition)
excellent........
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