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Laura Nyro on Track

Every Album, Every Song

Philip Ward
UK retail price: £15.99
US retail price: $22.95

Laura Nyro (1947-1997) was one of the most significant figures to emerge from the singer-songwriter boom of the 1960s. She first came to attention when her songs were hits for Barbra Streisand, The Fifth Dimension, Peter, Paul and Mary, and others. But it was on her own recordings that she imprinted her vibrant personality. With albums like Eli and the Thirteenth Confession and New York Tendaberry she mixed the sounds of soul, pop, jazz and Broadway to fashion autobiographical songs that earned her a fanatical following and influenced a generation of music-makers. In later life her preoccupations shifted from the self to embrace public causes such as feminism, animal rights and ecology – the music grew mellower, but her genius was undimmed.

This book examines her entire studio career from 1967’s More than a New Discovery to the posthumous Angel in the Dark release of 2001. Also surveyed are the many live albums that preserve her charismatic stage presence. With analysis of her teasing, poetic lyrics and unique vocal and harmonic style, this is the first-ever study to concentrate on Laura Nyro’s music and how she created it. Elton John idolised her; Joni Mitchell declared her ‘a complete original’. Here’s why.

The Author

Philip Ward is a writer, translator and former parliamentary researcher. Now freelance, he has published widely on literature and music, both popular and classical, and is a regular contributor to RnR magazine (where he recalls his proudest moment was interviewing Marianne Faithfull.) His previous books include Sandy Denny: Reflections on Her Music (2011), Becoming Helen Mirren (2019) and a translation of Frank Wedekind’s novella Mine-Haha (2010). When not dabbling in musical composition, he is currently at work on a biography of the novelist Michael Arlen. Home is Cambridge, England, where he is a Senior Member of Wolfson College.

Number of Pages: 160
Number of colour pictures: 42
ISBN: 9781789521825
Ebook ISBN:
UK retail price: £15.99
US retail price: $22.95


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