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Publisher's Summary

In this memoir, iconic singer Linda Ronstadt weaves together a captivating story of her origins in Tucson, Arizona, and her rise to stardom in the Southern California music scene of the 1960s and ‘70s.

Tracing the timeline of her remarkable life, Linda Ronstadt, whose 45-year career has encompassed a wide array of musical styles, weaves together a captivating story of her origins in Tucson, Arizona, and her rise to stardom in the Southern California music scene of the 1960s and ‘70s.

Linda Ronstadt was born into a musical family, and her childhood was filled with everything from Gilbert and Sullivan to Mexican folk music to jazz and opera. Her artistic curiosity blossomed early, and she and her siblings began performing their own music for anyone who would listen. Now, in this beautifully crafted memoir, Ronstadt tells the story of her wide-ranging and utterly unique musical journey. 

Ronstadt arrived in Los Angeles just as the folkrock movement was beginning to bloom, setting the stage for the development of country-rock. As part of the coterie of like-minded artists who played at the famed Troubadour club in West Hollywood, she helped define the musical style that dominated American music in the 1970s. One of her early backup bands went on to become the Eagles, and Linda went on to become the most successful female artist of the decade.

In Simple Dreams, Ronstadt reveals the eclectic and fascinating journey that led to her long-lasting success, including stories behind many of her beloved songs. And she describes it all in a voice as beautiful as the one that sang “Heart Like a Wheel” - longing, graceful, and authentic.

©2013 Linda Ronstadt. All rights reserved. “Long Long Time”: Words and music by Gary White © Universal Music Corporation. Reproduced by permission of Hal Leonard. “Heart Like a Wheel”: Words and music by Anna McGarrigle © Anna McGarrigle Music. Administered by Kobalt Music Publishing America, Inc. Reproduced by permission of Kobalt Music. “Still Within the Sound of My Voice”: Words and music by Jimmy Webb © Seventh Son Music, Inc., c/o Music of Windswept and Bug Music, Inc. Reproduced by permission of Hal Leonard. (P)2013 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about Simple Dreams

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Wonderfully crafted book about her career.

There aren't many entertainers who are/we're crazy smart and not riddled with drug problems. Linda is one of the very few exceptions. As I worked in the entertainment industry, I admit to being jaded, but Linda was a cut above all the rest. She's crazy smart, works hard and intelligently in a myriad of musical genres and possesses a mastery that few can match. She is also honestly humble and still doesn't know what a rare talent she is, not really.

This is a really good book and a better listen. The author now cannot sing due to an illness and rarely travels. She read the introduction and epilogue and the remainder was read by a woman with a remarkably similar voice. Her interests and travels are nicely covered, but she gives a wonderful insight into her thought processes that informed her decisions that created her remarkable career.

This is simply a lovely and deeply enjoyable read/listen. I'm going to do what I never do. I'm going to listen to it again. I can't give higher praise.

7 people found this helpful

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Gracias por compartir su voz, Linda....

I am also a Chicana from the same generation. My family also rooted in Sonora, Arizona, and Cali. As soon as I could get my 'ears' to this book I was on it. The talent and soul Linda shares with the world transcends genre . Most of all I was so impressed with the level of professional integrity -- I was married to a professional musician - and it is a difficult and physically taxing art. She never lost herself. Gracias

6 people found this helpful

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I loved this book

The story was told beautifully. The narrator was great. I was introduced to Linda's music by my mother and godmother. They would get together and blast Canciones de Mi Padre. I could still hear them singing together and having a good time.

4 people found this helpful

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Excellent

For anyone who likes any of Linda’s songs, this is a must read/listen! You won’t be disappointed.

3 people found this helpful

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very good book

excellent painting of the full picture of a beautiful person inside and out thank you

2 people found this helpful

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Everything but

I truly enjoyed the story of her musical career. While I am not interested in a steamy expose I expected some insight into the difficulties of balancing a career with her personal obligations, such as raising her children.

1 person found this helpful

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Lovely author, story could have been much more

I am being generous with my rating, as Linda Rondstadt is such an intelligent woman, full of grace and having paved the way for many other women in the very sexist music business. I have a full appreciation of how she looked at music and why she sang in so many genres from reading the book.

I wish huge music successes could strike a balance between FAR too much intimate information (e.g., Billy Idol) and next to none (this book). It's not even intimate information I want. But so very many pivotal relationships were ignored or glossed over, relationships that influenced the music. Plus, not being given a single detail about why she chose single motherhood, and how she went through the very emotional adoption experience, was disappointing in the extreme. My first disappointment came early, when she went from the beginning of a harrowing Catholic school to suddenly graduating from high school and just as suddenly, from college. Too much of her life was skipped.

However I did appreciate her brief assessment of Jim Morrison, which was always what I suspected he was like, and I learned a few new things, such as why arena performing is so awful from a sound perspective and how Metallica adapted to that beautifully. I'm glad I read it. But it could have been much more.

It was a monotone rendering that didn't really convey the heady excitement and ups and downs she lived.

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Stale and generic

I couldn’t get through the whole book, it’s very bland and sterile. It’s a musical memoir, I get it, but there is very little about her personal life or feelings, romantic life, ups, downs, not much that is relatable unless your in the music business. Too detailed with things most people don’t care about. It’s too bad, I grew up listening to her music, beautiful voice! Thought I’d hear more about The Eagles at least. Just skimmed over anything that would be interesting.

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Fantastic book by the voice of a generation.

i have always loved Linda Ronstadt's voice. Her recordings were the playlist of my youth.
i admire her interest and integrity of experiencing all forms of musical art,

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Review of “Simple Dreams” by Linda Rondstadt.

I would like to thank Linda Rondstadt for taking me on the journey through her life and career, I fell in love with her music in the 1970’s. And, I must say: Linda’s honest and inciteful depiction of how that music came into being helped me to appreciate it even more. I just finished Carly Simon’s book “Boys In The Trees. And, the opportunity I was given to learn even more about two beautiful and intelligent women like Linda and Carly was a rare pleasure for me. I will treasure the books, coming back to them often.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-04-21

BORING

Nothing bout her private life, was just dictionary about music notes basically.
Uninteresting really
Dumb