- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: Viking (April 15, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0670785881
- ISBN-13: 978-0670785889
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 145 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #348,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Shining Star: Braving the Elements of Earth, Wind & Fire Hardcover – April 15, 2014
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Bailey is the lead singer of the dynamic, wildly eclectic, and deeply influential R&B/soul/funk/gospel group Earth, Wind & Fire (EWF). He begins his memoir with a description of founder Maurice White’s “Concept” of how the group would “raise people to a higher level of consciousness.” White also wanted to make sure the band stood out from the rest—hence, their flamboyant clothing and unique stage presence. Bailey tells his own story, beginning with his Denver childhood, when he knew at age 6 that he wanted to be a musician, and continuing on to how he came to join the second incarnation of EWF as a 21-year-old singer-percussionist. He discusses his complicated relationship with women, the 1970s “station wagon tours,” the ups and downs of a professional band that is still active, and White’s health issues (he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1992). He name-drops, too, although not to excess: a Patti LaBelle here, a Sly and the Family Stone there. A fun read overall, especially for the many EWF fans still out there. --June Sawyers
"An energetic memoir about a complex individual and his music."
"Fans of Bailey’s music will find him a warm and occasionally very funny guide through the elements of this American band that Rolling Stone declared “changed the sound of black pop."
"[Shining Star] is a memoir of a man, a band, and a vision.... What may impress the most is Bailey’s honesty in relating conflicts that eventually tore the band apart, as well as his own shortcomings."
"If you’ve ever been a fan of Earth, Wind and Fire (and who hasn’t?), buy this book!"
"Ninety million records sold. Eight Grammy awards. Lot of platinum and gold records. And lead singer Bailey’s leaping multi-octave range. The numbers speak for themselves, but Bailey has more to say in this memoir, which ranges from Earth, Wind, & Fire’s early years to founder Maurice White’s disbanding the group in 1983 to Bailey’s solo career (which gave us “Easy Lover”) to the group’s reuniting and eventual ascension to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame."
A fun read overall, especially for the many EWF fans still out there.
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Thank you Phillip Bailey for writing this book. It answered a lot of questions I had always wondered about. "Wanna Thank You, Yeah......."
The best part about this autobiography is that Bailey tells an intriguing story without sensationalism, unnecessary name-dropping or cursing. A great read for anybody who is interested in one of the best R&B bands ever.