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Vic Flick, Guitarman

4.4 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1593933081
ISBN-10: 1593933088
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: BearManor Media (August 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593933088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593933081
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,152,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Geoff Leonard on August 24, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a fascinating book concerning the life and career of a man who always wanted to make his living through playing the guitar. By no means a household name on either side of the Atlantic, we learn how Vic Flick nevertheless became the leader of the incomparable John Barry Seven and eventually *the* man to turn to for crucial studio recordings.

There is a vivid account of growing up in the UK during the Second World War, before a brief attempt at a non-musical career faltered when the lure of playing music professionally proved too strong. We re-live the days of endless, tiring, variety tours in the late fifties, leading to a meeting with John Barry on a Paul Anka tour which became the first big break for him when John later asked him to join the JB7.

There are tales of the nerve-wracking "live" performances on BBC TV's Drumbeat show - the series which introduced Adam Faith to the general public. Also the JB7 recording sessions at the famous Abbey Road Studios and at CTS Bayswater - where the original version of The James Bond Theme was recorded, and on which Vic played solo guitar. There is even an extract from his diary verifying the time and date on which the recording of probably the most famous film theme of all time took place!

The book is full of hilarious anecdotes of both off and on-stage antics at pop concerts, characters he worked with at recording sessions at virtually every studio in London, the idiosyncrasies of the powerful session "fixers", and meeting and working with star names at both recording sessions and on TV shows during his very lengthy career.
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Format: Paperback
From 007 thrums to being handpicked by Paul McCartney for his "Thrillington" Wings project, to playing sessions and original works for everyone from Tom Jones to Burt Bacharach, Vic Flick is the man.

His Vic Flick, Guitarman is often poignant and funny, and makes me glad that studio musicians at last have better representation than they've "enjoyed" in years past--it is astonishing to think that Flick received several pounds sterling only to help orchestrate and perform the James Bond Signature Theme on his Clifford Essex Paragon De Luxe--now ensconced in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio. And wouldn't you like to see what that guitar would fetch on eBay?

The legend of the 007 guitar, Vic's work on numerous other Bonds and dozens of anecdotes from experiences with other music legends fill "Guitarman". A great read and I can hardly wait for the second autobiography from Flick (as this one is packed with Beatles, Bond and legends of the 60's and 70's only).

Musician, Bond fan or admirer of the great film and TV music of the glory years, this book is for you.
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Overall a great book! I am a long-time guitarist with much interest in the British music scene and British musicians. They are some of my favorites, including Jeff Beck, Justin Hayward, David Gilmour, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison, to name but a few. Vic provides an insight into Jimmy Page that you may not be aware of. Jimmy was a studio player before he got into the Yardbirds and later into Led Zeppelin.

I gave this four stars but could have just as easily given it five. I would have preferred that Vic included more technical information as to studio equipment used, guitarists' favorite equipment and instruments used during the timeframe covered (mostly 60's to early 70's). I know that he is well-versed in this area. But, some guitarists are more interested in the technical side than others, and presumably Vic was more interested in telling the basic story rather than get into the technicalities. Regardless, I really liked this book and will read it a second and probably a third time. Some of Vic's stories involving the musical directors and studio musicians he worked with still cause me to laugh when I think of them. Don't be drinking anything or be chewing on anything when you read the story about the Chinese restaurant or the stage incident during a live television program. Like the adage, the truth is always stranger than fiction. This book is a good run-down of the British studio musicians who REALLY played on all of your favorite rock and pop tunes originating in Britain from the late 1950's through the early 1970's. This is the British equal to the American Wrecking Crew that started with Phil Spector's use of so many Los Angeles based studio players to create his famous "wall of sound."
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Although the anecdotes are interesting, the book is unfocused, rambles, and the writing style is a bit amateurish, even high-schoolish. It doesn't appear to have passed through the filter of an editor, which can be a little frustrating at times. Still, if you're interested in this great man and his stories -- and if you're a guitar completist why wouldn't you? -- the only way other than calling the good sir up on the phone and asking to buy him a few pints is strapping in for a ride that requires a little patience and fortitude.
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