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Time and Love: The Art and Soul of Laura Nyro Paperback – August 1, 2002
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Top Customer Reviews
Her hand written notes are interesting but presenting them as a collage doesn't allow the reader to really see them. Very interesting how some verses or lines of a song she released had at one time been part of another song either released or unreleased. Did she really have to write down her on-stage banter?
The accompanying cd is a disappointment. Three songs is fine but why are two of them covers of someone else's songs?? Doesn't make sense when it's part of a songbook of her music. The cover of Stevie Wonder's "Creepin'" is great though--better realized than his own version cause she expresses that word in both the music and her singing.
Glancing through "Time and Love: The Art and Soul of Laura Nyro" does clearly give some clues to the extraordinary complexity of chords and tempo changes that made New York Tendaberry and the more difficult Christmas And The Beads Of Sweat extraordinary, ahead-of-their-time masterpieces. Laura Nyro, in contrast to the expectations of rock critics of this and subsequent eras, would never resort to loud three-chord rock. Yet, the notation used in the book is unclear - no exact tempos and very little understanding of the structures that her songs, on close examination, do actually have.
Even on her most "rock" material, such as "Beads Of Sweat", guitar players (there Duane Allman) were never allowed to indulge in heavy solos. Instead, they moved remarkably fluently with the groove of the song and its rises and falls. Most of her material was complex, many-chord and piano-based, with the added difficulty of a complex, multipersonal narrative style that can easily baffle critics.Read more ›
The book doesn't convey the full complexity of Nyro's own piano-playing, or her use of unpredictible tempo changes. However, it gives a good insight into the structure of the songs, and familiarity with her music should overcome such problems.
The songs are arranged as well as can be expected in a book of this type, and better than many I have owned. The choice of songs is good, although there are very few songs from her later albums (nothing at all from "Smile", "Nested", or "Live at the bottom line"). Still, we get "Stoned Soul Picnic", "Blackpatch", and "Upstairs by a Chinese Lamp", and those three alone make this book worth buying, in my opinion.
The book is beautifully presented, unlike any songbook I have ever seen. It contains many photos, paintings by Laura, and some interesting extracts from her journals. These reveal an artist who took her work very seriously, but also had a sense of humour (her comments about fans who objected to her performing "Wedding bell blues" made me laugh). There is also an interview with Laura about her songwriting, which is an interesting addition.
As if the book wasn't already a must for any fan, it comes with a Cd containing three unreleased tracks, including an excellent Stevie Wonder cover (Creepin').
Overall, this book is excellent. Although not comprehensive (let's hope for more books like this), it is a great introduction for anyone who wants to play Laura Nyro's songs. And it even goes some way towards showing the artist behind this incredible music.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A varied collection of her songs - mostly focused on her older, more popular works from Eli, New York Tendaberry, and such. It's a joy to be able to play this music.Published 10 months ago by R Froe
Book is great. It was wet when it arrived but still happy with it.Published 21 months ago by Julie Metz
I Bought this book because all I could see was Laura. She means so much to me, and now I have the pleasure of learning some of her songs whenever I want to! Read morePublished on February 12, 2014 by Peta B.