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Red, Hot & Rich Hardcover – January 1, 1987

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Reminiscences by the late composer's family members and associates, as well as excerpts from reviews of his shows are the only vital parts of this book. Grafton's own commentsrepetitious and awkwardare less interesting although he covers Porter's life in detail. Born in Indiana in 1891 to an affluent family, the song writer and lyricist was still a student at Yale when he started on the career that made him internationally famous. It's particularly telling that Porter's innovative creations took time to catch on, his melodies and verses were so different from what critics and theater-goers were accustomed to. Grafton, a Chicago business consultant, also dwells on intimate aspects of Porter's life, like the marriage that lasted until his wife's deathin spite of his homosexuality, which the author describes perhaps too explicitly. Photos not seen by PW.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

The title says it all. This oral biography of composer Porter is a sensationalized, shallow, and gossipy account that reads like an extended tabloid headline. Porter's flamboyant social life and homosexuality have already been well detailed by Charles Schwartz and others, yet Grafton repeats lurid tales of sexual escapades and provides endless accounts and guest lists of Porter's social activities, while glossing over his amazing output. Some of the quotes are insightful, but all too many merely serve as filler, and instead of exploring Porter's creativity the author gives us descriptions of the cigarette cases presented to Porter by his wife at every opening. Sloppy sentences and repetitions abound. Not recommended. Eric W. Johnson, Univ. of Bridgeport Lib., Ct.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Stein & Day; 1st edition (January 1, 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812831128
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812831122
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,603,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 29, 1998
Format: Hardcover
He hid his obscure background. He emerged into a society which was pegged for him! And he lived to tell about it -- as did his friends.
This is a collection of recollections about the inimitable Cole Porter, straight from the horses' mouths -- his family, his friends, his collaborators (which he denied having! Cole didn't see any reason not to write words AND music for everything!). It is witty and sad, frank and frivilous and fun. For insight into the life and talent of the man who gave us the songs we hum daily, we sing in the shower, and we spout lines from as if they were common knowledge, this is the source! A highly recommendable read, to be sure -- especially for those who love the music and sophisitication of the era!
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By G. Schneider VINE VOICE on December 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Where was the proofreader for this book? I was just glancing through my copy, which I hadn't looked at in 10 years or more, and saw that I'd noted many typos, misspellings and punctuation errors. At least twice, Richard Rodgers' surname is spelled without the "D". At least twice "Broadway" isn't capitalized. And even worse: the "big five" of the golden age of Broadway composers are listed -- George Gershwin, Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Richard Rodgers [spelled correctly in this instance] and Cole Porter. The author states "Among these five, Cole Porter was the only one who wrote both the words and the music." Oh? I'm sure Mr. Berlin would have been thrilled by that assessment!
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