AnyoneWhoHadaHeart_custom-9b567a6fac18a4f0d33736509d73baf3ea0a3c00-s6-c30Reviewed by Poppy Johnson

I have always loved this songwriter and performer and have enjoyed his music my entire life. In Anyone Who Had a Heart, Burt Bacharach writes about his life and music with Robert Greenfield as a co-writer, and discusses the full expanse of his impressive musical career. The book is written in first person, with first-hand accounts of what happened behind the scenes at music events, concerts, within the music industry and in his private life as recounted and given by Bacharach himself. This allows the readers full access to him as a person, entertainer and as someone who you would love to have had the chance to have gotten to know. Reading this book felt like sitting down with Bacharach for a latte and listening to him recount the important bits of his life as they happened – it is a great story.

Bacharach opens his heart in the book, and talks openly of his marriage to Angie Dickinson, the strained relationship with his daughter Nikki, his relationship with his ailing mother, the dozens of professional friendships with other popular and well-known actors and singers, and his close personal friendship and love life with Carole Bayer Sager. Carole and Angie as well as other people in the book are permitted to chime in with their own takes on specific life-changing events for the author, and it is interesting to get their perspective on what was really happening in the songwriter’s life. The back story to popular songs, the real accounts of how the author battled prescription drug addiction and other problems show that he was only human – if not one of the most successful and most talented singer/songwriter’s of all time.

Burt Bacharach is a legend. He heard songs in his head, was able to arrange and record hit after hit for the buying public and enjoyed global appeal for his records. His music is still appreciated today and his songs are heard today in pop culture movies, on commercials, in the media and around the world. I would recommend this book for anyone interested in finding out about the record industry or for anyone who grew up listening to Burt Bacharach’s songs (the way I did) and who was always curious about his personal life.

Rating: ★★★★★ 

After a decade of working in several NYC law departments and teaching, Poppy decided she enjoyed writing full-time. She currently works as a freelance writing consultant, and lives with her husband and sons on the East Coast.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Harper. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.