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I've Always Kept a Unicorn: The Biography of Sandy Denny

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I’ve Always Kept a Unicorn tells the story of Sandy Denny, one of the greatest British singers of her time and the first female British singer-songwriter to produce a substantial and enduring body of original songs. Sandy Denny laid down the marker for folk-rock when she joined Fairport Convention in 1968, releasing three albums with them in 1969 before her shock departure I’ve Always Kept a Unicorn tells the story of Sandy Denny, one of the greatest British singers of her time and the first female British singer-songwriter to produce a substantial and enduring body of original songs. Sandy Denny laid down the marker for folk-rock when she joined Fairport Convention in 1968, releasing three albums with them in 1969 before her shock departure just ahead of the release of the celebrated Liege & Lief. Her music went far beyond this during the seventies, driven by a restless search for the perfect framework for her songs, first with Fotheringay the group she formed but controversially left after recording just one album. On leaving, she immediately collaborated on a historic one-off recording with Led Zeppelin on ‘The Battle of Evermore’ – the only guest vocalist ever to record with the group. Four fascinating, mercurial solo albums followed as well as an ultimately misguided return to Fairport Convention before her tragic and untimely death, aged 31, in 1978, in circumstances still shrouded in hearsay and speculation. Sandy emerged from the folk scene of the sixties – a world of larger-than-life characters such as Alex Campbell, Jackson C. Frank, Anne Briggs and Australian singer Trevor Lucas, whom she married in 1973. Their often turbulent relationship is at the core of Sandy’s later life and work, as she tried to reconcile a longing for the simple life and motherhood with the trappings of a rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle and a fear of the fame and success which others expected of her. This is her story told with the help of more than sixty of her friends, fellow musicians and contemporaries all of whom spoke with great candour, some with too much candour, and all with a mixture of joy and sadness when talking about Sandy.


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I’ve Always Kept a Unicorn tells the story of Sandy Denny, one of the greatest British singers of her time and the first female British singer-songwriter to produce a substantial and enduring body of original songs. Sandy Denny laid down the marker for folk-rock when she joined Fairport Convention in 1968, releasing three albums with them in 1969 before her shock departure I’ve Always Kept a Unicorn tells the story of Sandy Denny, one of the greatest British singers of her time and the first female British singer-songwriter to produce a substantial and enduring body of original songs. Sandy Denny laid down the marker for folk-rock when she joined Fairport Convention in 1968, releasing three albums with them in 1969 before her shock departure just ahead of the release of the celebrated Liege & Lief. Her music went far beyond this during the seventies, driven by a restless search for the perfect framework for her songs, first with Fotheringay the group she formed but controversially left after recording just one album. On leaving, she immediately collaborated on a historic one-off recording with Led Zeppelin on ‘The Battle of Evermore’ – the only guest vocalist ever to record with the group. Four fascinating, mercurial solo albums followed as well as an ultimately misguided return to Fairport Convention before her tragic and untimely death, aged 31, in 1978, in circumstances still shrouded in hearsay and speculation. Sandy emerged from the folk scene of the sixties – a world of larger-than-life characters such as Alex Campbell, Jackson C. Frank, Anne Briggs and Australian singer Trevor Lucas, whom she married in 1973. Their often turbulent relationship is at the core of Sandy’s later life and work, as she tried to reconcile a longing for the simple life and motherhood with the trappings of a rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle and a fear of the fame and success which others expected of her. This is her story told with the help of more than sixty of her friends, fellow musicians and contemporaries all of whom spoke with great candour, some with too much candour, and all with a mixture of joy and sadness when talking about Sandy.

30 review for I've Always Kept a Unicorn: The Biography of Sandy Denny

  1. 4 out of 5

    Pete daPixie

    Houghton's biography of Sandy Denny was published in 2015, the latest in a number of biogs on Sandy and her music. Clinton Heylin wrote 'No More Sad Refrains-The life and times of Sandy Denny' in 2002, after his 'Gypsy Love Songs & Sad Refrains-The Recordings of Richard Thompson and Sandy Denny' in 1989. Pamela Murray Winters wrote 'No Thought of Leaving: A Life of Sandy Denny' in 2000, which remains unpublished and Philip Ward came in with 'Sandy Denny:Reflections on her Music' in 2011 and Jim Houghton's biography of Sandy Denny was published in 2015, the latest in a number of biogs on Sandy and her music. Clinton Heylin wrote 'No More Sad Refrains-The life and times of Sandy Denny' in 2002, after his 'Gypsy Love Songs & Sad Refrains-The Recordings of Richard Thompson and Sandy Denny' in 1989. Pamela Murray Winters wrote 'No Thought of Leaving: A Life of Sandy Denny' in 2000, which remains unpublished and Philip Ward came in with 'Sandy Denny:Reflections on her Music' in 2011 and Jim Irvin's 'Wildflowers:Sandy Denny, Joni Mitchell and Kate Bush' 2014. 'I've Always Kept a Unicorn' provides a full in depth biographical story that illuminates her life and her musical development and career. Mick Houghton contributes his vast knowledge of the British music scene of the sixties and seventies. His text is punctuated with 'notes' giving details of the many personalities that Denny came into contact with, from her earliest appearances in the London 'folk scene' and throughout her collaborations with such as 'The Strawbs', 'Fairport Convention', and 'Fotheringay'. I was lucky enough to see Sandy with Fairport Convention in 1969, and I saw Fairport again in 1970, after Sandy had left. Although much is made of 'Liege & Lief', for me, 'Unhalfbricking' remains a timeless masterpiece that I have had to replace on vinyl, cassette and c.d. Her final years make for sad reading, not unlike the demise of other female musical talents whose careers became dogged by life style pressures and changing times, such as Alma Cogan, Judy Garland and Janis Joplin.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jen

    Sandy Denny's life was full of beautiful music, substance abuse, and tragedy. This biographer does a good job of putting together her life's story through interviews with relatives, friends, and acquaintances. This also includes some fun photos of Sandy that I've never seen before. The track list section at the back of the book is extensive and includes music she enjoyed, as well as all of her known recordings.

  3. 4 out of 5

    El

    The Guardian , February 2015. The Guardian , February 2015.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    I've been wanting to read this bio since I first saw it about 18 months ago in one of my fav culture shops in Adelaide as a hard back. Earlier this year, I bought the paperback release. I was/am a huge fan of Fairport Convention, which how I first learned of Sandy Denny. And I followed her first couple of solo albums post Fairport before I dropped away when punk and post-punk penetrated my consciousness. And only discovered of the early death of Ms Denny years after the fact. This is a no holds I've been wanting to read this bio since I first saw it about 18 months ago in one of my fav culture shops in Adelaide as a hard back. Earlier this year, I bought the paperback release. I was/am a huge fan of Fairport Convention, which how I first learned of Sandy Denny. And I followed her first couple of solo albums post Fairport before I dropped away when punk and post-punk penetrated my consciousness. And only discovered of the early death of Ms Denny years after the fact. This is a no holds barred insight into Sandy's life, full of interviews with family and close friends, piecing together a conflicted artist - one who wanted fame and yet when it started to look possible, she shrank from and ran away from it. If you have an interest in the English folk/rock revival of the late 60's/early 70's that in turn inspired the current crop of young traditionalists in the UK, this book is a must read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Abby

    An exhaustively researched and well-written biography of Sandy Denny, the gifted British singer/songwriter who passed away much too young at age 31. I've been listening to a lot of her music recently and it was fascinating to learn the backstory behind some of her more personal works. It's an interesting look at the British folk/rock scene of the 1960s and 70s if a somewhat depressing story. Read for Book Bingo 2019: music or musicians square.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Allan Heron

    An excellent biography of the tragic life and career of Sandy Denny. Incorporating interviews with most of the surviving players in her life, the book addresses all of the key areas and decisions in Sandy's life. As such, it provides a welcome nuanced take on many of these including her relationship with husband Trevor Lucas (who has often been portrayed as the villain of the piece). As with many artists, Denny was a mass of contradictions and insecurities, and these helped to misdirect her career An excellent biography of the tragic life and career of Sandy Denny. Incorporating interviews with most of the surviving players in her life, the book addresses all of the key areas and decisions in Sandy's life. As such, it provides a welcome nuanced take on many of these including her relationship with husband Trevor Lucas (who has often been portrayed as the villain of the piece). As with many artists, Denny was a mass of contradictions and insecurities, and these helped to misdirect her career at inopportune moments. Dying tragically, but perhaps inevitably, at 31 Denny has a large and growing reputation but the level of success during her life always fell below what you felt was possible.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    Comprehensive, informative, impeccably researched & written. Faultless. Comprehensive, informative, impeccably researched & written. Faultless.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Neal Atherton

    With the routine of life on hold one pleasurable aspect of this dreadful situation we are all now in is that I can enjoy some extra time for reading and writing. I had for some time wanted to read : I've Always Kept a Unicorn: The Biography of Sandy Denny by Mick Houghton. So, this last week I read this over 400 page biography in almost one sitting, it was that engrossing. It was also difficult to read in many ways, quite unbearably sad if you had lived through her life and times, you wanted the With the routine of life on hold one pleasurable aspect of this dreadful situation we are all now in is that I can enjoy some extra time for reading and writing. I had for some time wanted to read : I've Always Kept a Unicorn: The Biography of Sandy Denny by Mick Houghton. So, this last week I read this over 400 page biography in almost one sitting, it was that engrossing. It was also difficult to read in many ways, quite unbearably sad if you had lived through her life and times, you wanted the story to evolve differently and the ending to be revised. The research in this wonderful book is astonishing and it is a story told with great love and respect for its subject but never shies away from the reality of Sandy’s short and tragic life. It is a fitting tribute to a singer and songwriter who despite her lack of commercial success stands head and shoulders above any other British female artist. My opinion of Sandy is unashamedly biased but deep down I know it to be true and Mick Houghton’s book sets out the reasons why she should be considered as Britain’s finest and there are plenty of people who feel the same. My relationship with her music started around 1970 when I was in my mid-teens. I should really have been getting into the ‘pop’ scene – Motown, Northern soul, Yes and Deep Purple were being fired at me endlessly at that time. I never did go down those routes and my taste in music, my love of all things sad and introspective, started with Sandy. As the book expresses so eloquently there is no voice as emotive and powerful as Sandy Denny and her interpretation of song is peerless. I was hooked. The first band I saw live was indeed Fairport Convention. Yes, I was a strange child, but I look back on that gig with a fondness that has never dimmed, it was truly magical. I recall being in the foyer of Bolton Town Hall that night during the interval, eight of us trying to cram into the wooden telephone booths and persuade someone to come and pick us up at the end of the concert. Others had their big stars at that time but to us their chosen ones were pygmies on the music scene. Fairport were to us a big as it gets and we were beyond excited. Just as we were phoning the outside doors crashed open as the band, sadly minus Sandy, rushed past us into the hall. What a moment for us star struck teenagers. It is fair to say our friends in sixth form college were still distinctly unimpressed the next day. I can still recall that show in great detail, a performance of power and character, none more so than Dave Swarbrick on the fiddle, three cigarettes on the go at once as he manically prowled the stage. It was when you were back home though that you always went back to finding a Sandy track. You wanted to be moved and you wanted to see if she was really that mesmerising. She was and still is, the music has not aged and it has not lost its power and intensity. Dave Houghton’s book conveys that exceptionally well describing the effect that her voice and interpretation had on you and for me it still does. A few years later as I was in my local newsagents collecting my order for the Melody Maker I saw on the counter the headline ‘Sandy Denny Dead’. Never before or since has news brought such emotion to me as that did. I had to absorb that and return to work and I still can never forget that dreadful day. I attended the concert a few years ago that was a tribute to Sandy’s music based around Thea Gilmour putting music to unrecorded songs of Sandy, songs written shortly before her death. One incident that night encapsulated the strength of Sandy’s writing and the ability she had to move people. The American artist Joan Wasser, better known by her stage name Joan as Policewoman, sat at the grand piano in the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and began to play ‘No more Sad Refrains’, a song that looking back over times is just unbearably poignant. Joan Wasser is an artist that is no stranger to tragedy, having been the girlfriend of Jeff Buckley. As she drew her gorgeous interpretation of the song to a close she gave way to tears and so it has to be said did most of the audience. Sandy had that effect in her lifetime and this ability in song has never diminished. I recommend this book to anyone who is familiar with Sandy Denny and wants to understand her more. She was dearly loved by all who knew her it is clear but she was a difficult artist and person to work with. She had her demons in spades and was devastatingly affected by the Fairport vehicle crash that took lives of people she was close to. She travelled separately that night and was consumed by guilt. She was insecure and never could be convinced that she really was that good an artist. Ultimately like many talents of pure genius she could not cope with a destructive needy relationship and her career going nowhere after such promise. Her decent into drink and drugs and her early tragic death are recounted in the book but you are left with grateful thanks for what she achieved and left behind. Mick is a skilled writer in being able to balance the emotions that her life throws at you. If you are not familiar with her music then still read this remarkable book. Listen to ‘Banks of the Nile’ and ‘A Sailors Life’ and then tell me that she is not the finest lady to have ever sung on these shores.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    The life of Sandy Denny was happy, sad, triumphant, tragic, crazy and mixed up. This biography follows all curves in the road, and taught me more about a favorite singer and songwriter.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Peter Pinkney

    I never learn, I keep reading these type of biographies, and they never get any better with a few exceptions, they are all the same. I love Sandy Denny, and having read lots of positive reviews, I was really looking forward to it. It’s well written, exhaustively researched, but but but...like most of these books, they tend to degenerate into lists-albums, songs, tours etc. The subtitle is The Biography of Sandy Denny, but it isn’t really, it’s more about the people who were her friends, or played I never learn, I keep reading these type of biographies, and they never get any better with a few exceptions, they are all the same. I love Sandy Denny, and having read lots of positive reviews, I was really looking forward to it. It’s well written, exhaustively researched, but but but...like most of these books, they tend to degenerate into lists-albums, songs, tours etc. The subtitle is The Biography of Sandy Denny, but it isn’t really, it’s more about the people who were her friends, or played in bands with her. You never really get to grips with the person, or what she was thinking, what made her tick, or who she really was. Maybe I’ve been spoiled by reading too many lottery biographies. You want to know about Sandy? Listen to the lyrics of her wonderful songs is the best advice that I can give.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    I quite enjoyed this biography of Sandy and learned a lot about her life and the context of her music. It was well written, a tiny bit workmanlike and very fair. I admit to finding it extremely depressing, especially the end of her life and after her daughter was born. What a hideous situation. Her voice is one that has sustained me for so many decades - she was such a gifted and joyous singer, the toll of her addictions is really tragic.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lionel Denny

    So sad this amazing singer passed away at just 31 yrs old without really fulfilling her potential. Some of the best songs I've ever listened to are either her with the great Fairport Convention or her solo works. This book tells the story so well.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ken French

    A hundred times better than Clinton Heylin's hyperbolic No More Sad Refrains. Houghton's only flaw is that he lets too many people weigh in on Sandy, to the point where they often contradict each other. But this is generally a biography written with a deep regard for Sandy's talent.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Chris Meloche

    Read my review here... http://www.chrismeloche.com/?p=213 Read my review here... http://www.chrismeloche.com/?p=213

  15. 4 out of 5

    Skord

    Exhaustive and exhausting read. An almost minute by minute account of the all too short life of Britain's finest voices.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Donald

    Well written book but very sad I was fan of Sandy Denny from the first time I heard Fairport Convention What a troubled life

  17. 4 out of 5

    Hakim

    The first time I heard Led Zeppelin IV, Sandy Denny's backup vocals were one of the highlights. The emotional depth, the power that her voice conveys is magical and mesmerising, a quality so rare it leaves you dumbstruck. After listening to her albums with Fairport Convention, the Swarbs, Fotheringay, and her solo efforts, I felt the urge to learn about her life, about her experiences and what led to her death. This book really hit the spot. I've Always Kept a Unicorn is everything a biography s The first time I heard Led Zeppelin IV, Sandy Denny's backup vocals were one of the highlights. The emotional depth, the power that her voice conveys is magical and mesmerising, a quality so rare it leaves you dumbstruck. After listening to her albums with Fairport Convention, the Swarbs, Fotheringay, and her solo efforts, I felt the urge to learn about her life, about her experiences and what led to her death. This book really hit the spot. I've Always Kept a Unicorn is everything a biography should be. Mick Houghton has managed a fair and thorough treatment of the incredible character that is Sandy, throughout her complicated albeit short life. He goes into detail on her relationships, her aspirations, her collaborations and her legacy. The writer never leaves any detail in the shadows, and skillfully highlights the most important traits of her personality, including the flaws which end up being her undoing. Sandy had many talents. Her singing, song construction ability and sad, somber lyrics are nonesuch. Nevertheless, she was very insecure and self-aware, she had difficulties in relating at people. She was full of "opposites." She could go from being suicidal to being control very quickly, she had an overactive mind. This, I would have never guessed. Her pursuit of commercial success that eluded her most of her career is nothing short of tragic. Mick Houghton puts all of this into perspective in a brilliant manner, making the book as addictive as some of Sandy's songs. He uses his music business connections to obtain valuable insights into her life from the likes of Richard and Linda Thompson, Joe Boyd, Dave Swarb, Trevor Lucas, her parents, and even Robert Plant! If you are as infatuated with Sandy Denny as I am, do not hesitate one second. READ THIS BOOK!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Malcolm Frawley

    I first heard Sandy Denny on the Led Zeppelin track Battle Of Evermore (1971). It was a beautiful cameo, and the only solo voice, apart from Plant's, ever heard on a Zep recording. I have tried several times since then to get into her music without any success at all. She has a great voice but the style of her music (Fairport Convention, Fotheringay, solo stuff) just never appealed to me. But I was well aware of the high regard in which she was held within the music industry. This biog provides I first heard Sandy Denny on the Led Zeppelin track Battle Of Evermore (1971). It was a beautiful cameo, and the only solo voice, apart from Plant's, ever heard on a Zep recording. I have tried several times since then to get into her music without any success at all. She has a great voice but the style of her music (Fairport Convention, Fotheringay, solo stuff) just never appealed to me. But I was well aware of the high regard in which she was held within the music industry. This biog provides a great insight into her life and lack of success. She seemed to have everything going for her - she could sing, play & compose - but lacked the crucial elements required for stardom - ambition & focus. Her life was cut tragically short @ only 31 but her career was already all but over. A complex character who much preferred the camaraderie of being part of a band than the loneliness of solo work but whose issues with alcohol, drugs & chronic insecurity prevented her from taking advantage of her obvious gifts. An excellent read for anyone with an interest in popular music.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Adele Abrams

    The Real Sandy Denny? I'm an English folk music fan and always loved Fairport Convention, Strawbs, John Renbourne, John Martyn, and Richard & Linda Thompson (among others). When I worked as a DJ I would slip this music in between rock and roll tunes. The incredible voice of Sandy Denny, preeminent "girl" singer from that scene and best known for writing Judy Collins' hit song, "Who Knows Where the Time Goes," always drew me in. She could write her own songs, and interpret the music of others from The Real Sandy Denny? I'm an English folk music fan and always loved Fairport Convention, Strawbs, John Renbourne, John Martyn, and Richard & Linda Thompson (among others). When I worked as a DJ I would slip this music in between rock and roll tunes. The incredible voice of Sandy Denny, preeminent "girl" singer from that scene and best known for writing Judy Collins' hit song, "Who Knows Where the Time Goes," always drew me in. She could write her own songs, and interpret the music of others from the heart and soul. She sang traditional folk songs as if she lived centuries ago. But I didn't know much about her personal life, struggles, and how she moved through the different bands (and relationships). All I knew was that she died young, and tragically. If you want to know not only her personal tale, but also gain insight into the British folk music scene of the 1960s and 1970s, read this book!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Martin Hoogeboom

    “Well, it’s okay but it’s no Sandy Denny” is usually my standard answer when someone ask me what I think of a particular singer. “I’ve Always Kept A Unicorn” is a well written biography about the Queen of Melancholy Sandy Denny. And as is often, the life of an artist admired by me is not at all what I had imagined. Certainly when I was young I looked up at someone with so much talent & making such wonderful records. They have to live a rich and happy life. But the harsh reality is unfortunately “Well, it’s okay but it’s no Sandy Denny” is usually my standard answer when someone ask me what I think of a particular singer. “I’ve Always Kept A Unicorn” is a well written biography about the Queen of Melancholy Sandy Denny. And as is often, the life of an artist admired by me is not at all what I had imagined. Certainly when I was young I looked up at someone with so much talent & making such wonderful records. They have to live a rich and happy life. But the harsh reality is unfortunately doom and gloom. I'm probably one of the few who thinks the combination Fairport Convention/Sandy Denny was not always working well. Independently they were much better in my humble opinion. And unlike the writer, I think arranger Harry Robinson did a brilliant job on all of her solo records. This is certainly a must-read for every fan of Sandy and Fairport Convention.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Steve Gillway

    I enjoyed reading this while listening to her music. I am struck by how strong her effect still is on female driven folk music in the UK. This book takes us carefully through her life step by step at all times the author is aware of what the main players thought or said at the time and what they said later on. It is quite incredible that she is not widely known, although she received much critical acclaim during her lifetime. For some reason the commercial success eluded her, yet in a strange wa I enjoyed reading this while listening to her music. I am struck by how strong her effect still is on female driven folk music in the UK. This book takes us carefully through her life step by step at all times the author is aware of what the main players thought or said at the time and what they said later on. It is quite incredible that she is not widely known, although she received much critical acclaim during her lifetime. For some reason the commercial success eluded her, yet in a strange way that may have been good for her. Greater success might have led to more drug abuse earlier. But she burned bright and some of that can still be felt in her recordings.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Andy Bryant

    Brilliant, didn't want it to end. Actually, was surprised it did end given my Kindle said 58% - the rest was the index and a playlist (which is a brilliant idea - a full chronological list of all Sandy's recordings along with other relevant releases that were influences and/or records she loved). The only bit I thought was lacking was the exploration of Sandy's relationship with her parents. Neal Denny did not attend her wedding to Trevor Lucas and the situation with her parents is occasionally Brilliant, didn't want it to end. Actually, was surprised it did end given my Kindle said 58% - the rest was the index and a playlist (which is a brilliant idea - a full chronological list of all Sandy's recordings along with other relevant releases that were influences and/or records she loved). The only bit I thought was lacking was the exploration of Sandy's relationship with her parents. Neal Denny did not attend her wedding to Trevor Lucas and the situation with her parents is occasionally alluded to but never fully explored. I would've liked to have known a bit more, is all. On the whole a totally immersive book sympathetically written.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Under Milkwood

    This well-researched biography was a real insight for me. In the late sixties, early seventies I was a devoted Fairport fan, and upon Sandy's initial exit from the band, I eagerly anticipated her solo projects, including Fotheringay. Sadly, while I never admitted it at the time, I was always underwhelmed by the overall results. Her 1974 return to the band at Festival Hall in Melbourne didn't feel right. Mick Houghton has filled in all the gaps on a would be star who always remained 'obscured by This well-researched biography was a real insight for me. In the late sixties, early seventies I was a devoted Fairport fan, and upon Sandy's initial exit from the band, I eagerly anticipated her solo projects, including Fotheringay. Sadly, while I never admitted it at the time, I was always underwhelmed by the overall results. Her 1974 return to the band at Festival Hall in Melbourne didn't feel right. Mick Houghton has filled in all the gaps on a would be star who always remained 'obscured by clouds'. A sad, tragic woman who seemed to orchestrate her own downfall. But oh, what a voice

  24. 4 out of 5

    Andy Larter

    Despite Sandy Denny's colourful life, this is a rather dry biography. I have no doubt that it is accurate and it certainly took me back to the albums I listen to less frequently than others. But I couldn't help thinking that the writing lacked some zip. The story made me feel sad as well. Sandy seems to have been lacking confidence in some aspects of her life, despite that wonderful voice and some superb songs. The end of her life was certainly very sad.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tara

    This authorised, official biography is meticulous, fair and - dare I say it - a little dry. In so carefully (and laudably) eschewing sensationalism, it also leaves the mystery and drama of Sandy Denny's brief, tumultuous career largely unexplained. Still, a good book - with some nice extras, including suggestions for further reading, and a playlist covering each year of Sandy's life.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Derek Nudd

    This book needs to be read all at once because the avalanche of names, places, events and linkages between them will leave your head spinning if you don't keep going. It still leaves a powerful impression of her towering talent and personal vulnerability. One of the great voices, who could cut straight from the ears to the soul - now sadly stilled.

  27. 4 out of 5

    George Barnett

    I have loved the music of Sandy Denny for many years. I always knew her life was chaotic and her death tragic. I hadn't been aware just what a mess her life was. Her voice could be immensely moving. This book was a good chronological account of her recordings. The whole thing read a little like an extended record review but it's sent me back to some much loved songs.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nikki

    This bio flows beautifully. The author researched the folk scene so well that you can really apprecaite the context that Sandy Denny performed in and evolved from. Its such a sad story of wasted talent but well written and a joy to read- you will find yourself hunting down obscure recordings after reading it, I'm warning you now!!!

  29. 5 out of 5

    AustinT

    2019

  30. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    Heartbreaking account of the life and death of an almost forgotten genius.

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