They're Playing Our Song

They're Playing Our Song

A Memoir

Book - 2016
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The New York Times Bestseller

Grammy and Academy Award-winning songwriter Carole Bayer Sager shares the remarkably frank and darkly funny story of her life in and out of the recording studio, from her fascinating (and sometimes calamitous) relationships to her collaborations with some of the greatest composers and musical artists of our time.

For five decades, Carole Bayer Sager has been among the most admired and successful songwriters at work, responsible for her lyrical contributions to some of the most popular songs in the English language, including "Nobody Does It Better," "A Groovy Kind of Love," "Don't Cry Out Loud," and the theme from the movie Arthur , "The Best That You Can Do" (about getting lost between the moon and New York City).

She has collaborated with (and written for) a dizzying number of stars, including Peter Allen, Ray Charles, Celine Dion, Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, Clint Eastwood, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Carole King, Melissa Manchester, Reba McEntire, Bette Midler, Dolly Parton, Carly Simon, Frank Sinatra, and Barbra Streisand.

Her relationship with composer Marvin Hamlisch was the basis of the long-running hit musical, They're Playing Our Song , for which she wrote the lyrics. And her work with composer Burt Bacharach, to whom she was also married for ten years, produced pop standards such as "On My Own" and "That's What Friends Are For" (inspired by her friendship with Elizabeth Taylor), which raised over two million dollars for AIDS research.

But while her professional life was filled with success and fascinating people, her personal life was far more difficult and dramatic. In this memoir, Carole Bayer Sager tells the surprisingly frank and darkly humorous story of a woman whose sometimes crippling fears and devastating relationships inspired many of the songs she would ultimately write.

They're Playing Our Song will fascinate anyone interested in the craft of songwriting and the joy of collaboration, but Carole Bayer Sager's memoir is also a deeply personal account of how love and heartbreak made her the woman, and the writer, she is.
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, ©2016.
ISBN: 9781501153266
Characteristics: 336 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates :,illustrations (some colour), portraits (some colour) ;,24 cm
Alternative Title: They are playing our song


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Mar 23, 2019

Insecure; manufactured empathy.

I am glad that I did not waste my money on purchasing this book. I forced myself to read halfway through the book hoping it would redeem itself which sadly it did not. The author is definitely a product of her insecure Hollywood environment and lacks true empathy. She is willing to throw anyone under the bus including purported best friends and an autistic step- daughter to make herself appear superior. If you are looking for a strong female narrative, look elsewhere.

Jan 13, 2019

Quite. Why oh why did I read this? My only motivation was why would someone write that dreadful "You're Moving Out Today" song from the 70s. Little did I know Carole had an insatiable need to be a door mat to at least three boyfriends or husbands. Burt Bacharach is portrayed as an Adonis who was disgusting in his behaviour, and her time with Marvin Hamlisch was crippling; but she stayed because they were artistic gods she felt lucky to be insulted by. She writes in a truly embarrassing and creepy way about her "friend" Elizabeth Taylor, the joy of being allowed to sit often at her sick bed, and the way she ran a party with OTT party favours. But the worst part is her idea of being a song writer; hers are rhyming and word-association. She may be known for "That's What Friends Are For" but popular or Grammy Award doesn't translate to good or even average. It was embarrassing to plough through her "inspirational" moments but I've learned a lesson about when to stop reading something that is turgid.

May 06, 2017

Very interesting book about songwriting. Nearly everyone who wrote songs during this
time is in this book. Burt Bacharach and Hal David (the lyricist to most of Bacharach's songs) are the geniuses. I never cared for Carol Bayer Sager's lyrics ;her songs usually depended on several people to co-write with her. They are what I would call Smaltz (corny). I learned that
to get your songs published and sung, you need to be connected. Only certain people's
songs are out there for us to hear. The book has a lot of insight into the music business.

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