No More Sad Refrains: The Life of Sandy Denny Paperback – 6 Jun 2011
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"If you are at all interested in Sandy you must read this book; then go back and read it again." Chris Woods -- Greenman Review, June 2000 --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From the Publisher
Gripping biog of the best English female singer-songwriter
Clinton Heylin's biography (details listed above were initially incorrect and will shortly be corrected) No More Sad Refrains, draws on hours of fresh interviews with Sandy's closest friends and musical collaborators, access to her diaries and unreleased work, to produce a moving portrait of a complex, driven, but fatally flawed genius, who remains the finest female singer-songwriter this country has ever produced. "My favourite singer out of all the British girls that ever were." Robert Plant --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Denny's most famous song is "Who Knows Where The Time Goes?", and somehow it's taken over two decades for the unvarnished story of her life and death to come out. Clinton Heylin's biography is no hagiography; Sandy Denny was no saint. Most of her fans will be surprised to learn that she was a heavy drinker, and terribly insecure. Heylin blames many of those around her for making her insecurity even worse. He brands her adored but roving husband Trevor Lucas (who died in 1989) "a mediocre musician" who badgered Denny into writing more songs, then dismissed them as sounding too much the same. He blames Denny's early producer, Joe Boyd, for pulling the plug on Fotheringay half way through recording their second album, forcing her unwillingly to go solo. ("Solo" is one of her most ironic songs, as much about broken love as about singing.)
Heylin's book, which includes photographs, some of Denny's drawings, pages from her diaries, and unrecorded and draft lyrics, is a sharp-edged record of her personal and professional frustrations and missed opportunities.Read more ›
This book acquaints you with the woman behind the voice. As the author says, "Solo the voice could now be heard in all its resonating purity, driven by an unerring instinct, but the secret Sandy remained a deeply unhappy person, for whom the songs remained her only release."
There are lots of touching anecdotes, like the time Sandy invited her friend Bambi Ballard to a studio at one in the morning to play the songs of the album "Sandy." After each song the insecure Sandy asked "You don't want to hear any more, do you?" Bambi Ballard, the sole audience, with tears running down her face had to reassure her that each song was lovely and to urge her to play another.
The book also corrects the notion that Sandy fell as a result of falling downstairs - and helps to explain why the some of the facts were played down.
In short if you like Sandy Denny's music, this book is a "must" and is extremely readable.
The book has received a lot of bad publicity over the years; nobody who is considered an authority on Sandy Denny seems to think it is any good. And sure enough the book has it's faults. It offers almost everything there is to know on Denny's personal life, but her music is hardly being discussed, let alone analised.
In general, Heylin, in telling his story, does not keep enough distance in some parts, giving personal opinions where a clean representation of the facts or just sticking to quotes of witnesses would have made situations perfectly clear. He is also a little too anxious to lay the blame for Sandy's personal problems and downfall with certain people.
The book still seems to contain many of the spelling errors and crooked sentences that it did when it first appeared, which I find rather respectless to it's new readers.
The more strange it is to find that Heylin did have time to add, at the end of the book, a separate piece on all the CD's with 'previously unreleased tracks' that have appeared since the book was written. Heylin dismisses most of them as mere attempts to empty the pockets of the hardcore fans, the CD's themselves being marred by the wrong choices of song-versions and other evils.
It is especially in this part of the book that Heylin shows why some people dislike him so much.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A must for devotees, even if somewhat marred by all-too-prevalent bad grammar. I was a star-struck disciple, and could never have suspected the tragic reality behind the sublime... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Advocate
Clinton Heylin tells us nearly everything we wanted to know, and a few things we didn't want to know, about Sandy Denny. Read morePublished on 28 May 2014 by Steve B
I was touched by this superb biography of the life and times of one of my all-time favourite female vocalists, even to the point of tears at times (call me sentimental). Read morePublished on 5 Jun. 2013 by Gert Volkmer
This was a present that was greatly appreciated. It went well with Sandy Denny Reflections on her music. Many thanksPublished on 26 May 2013 by mt
For all those who admire and love Sandy's music this revealing book provides some background information that is both rewarding and a little sad. Read morePublished on 11 Feb. 2013 by Ian P
This book has been so well researched, thought out and written, I feel like I know her very well, and her troubled life, and also a greater understanding of her song writing and... Read morePublished on 13 Dec. 2012 by Silverfox
I've just finished reading Clinton Heylin's NO MORE SAD REFRAINS, which took just a couple of sessions. Read morePublished on 8 Feb. 2012 by Virgil Hilts
Firstly, the book seems to be full of the author's weird conceited thoughts. Secondly, the cover is wrong, Amazon. Read morePublished on 10 Sept. 2011 by Mr. C. J. Iredale