Reviews for The Singer’s Tale

“A remarkable book – excellent and compulsive read – with the odds heavily stacked against her, Carol’s determination to make it as a singer would make a great film if it could capture the underlying theme of changing times from an era that was almost recognisable as Victorian to the transformation that was rock’n’roll driven by the post-war generation.” Dave Monk


Anyone who’s ever witnessed Carol Grimes in concert will testify to the fact she possesses a raw emotional power, tempered with the shading of experience and the passing of time. Those lucky enough to have heard her simple yet devastating renditions of Fran Landesman’s “Scars”, or Eden Ahbez’s “Nature Boy” resonating in packed rooms, or jazz stages, will want to read her back story, to find out more.

And now, not before time, Grimes has finally produced her autobiography. Titled “The Singer’s Tale” (after Chaucer) it is a wild, candid, sometimes unsparing journey. At times wise-after-the-event and other times laugh-out-loud funny (the Kafkaesque trials of reclaiming a pension once you’ve had several surnames) ~ Carol Grimes is a vivid character one instinctively warms to in the intimacy of these pages. A childhood adrift amongst ration books and bomb-damaged London ~ a quest for identity when significant family members are but faint sketches, old sepia photographs ~ eventually finding her voice and her way.

The early albums, musical travels to Memphis and Nashville ~ the firm belief that singing for her supper was the only way forward ~ even with its accompanying pitfalls, safety nets and occasional tragedies. The competing voices in her head, all given free rein here ~ constructing a complex persona ~ sometimes vulnerable, sometimes wayward; always human. I warmly recommend “The Singer’s Tale” if you want to eavesdrop on the REAL story of women making music in the sixties and seventies ~ the deals, the dodgy managers (“We can market you as a British Janis Joplin…”) ~ the highs, the lows, the hangers-on, the true friends ~ above all the music, the vital spark of humanity. Buy this book.

M. Kemp


The detail, the grit, the hardship, the survival, the sweet aroma, the living by voice and sound. I couldn’t stand when this experience ended. Read the book for goodness sake!

Gunnel Larsson


great read

Mr. J. Morris


This is a fabulous book. I bought it as I love Carol’s singing,but you don’t need to know her music to appreciate this book. This is so much more than your average music biog. It paints a vivid tale of growing up in post-World War Two Britain, then moves through an extraordinary life to becoming the acclaimed singer that she is.

Paul Griffiths


A remarkable book – excellent and compulsive read – with the odds heavily stacked against her, Carol’s determination to make it as a singer would make a great film if it could capture the underlying theme of changing times from an era that was almost recognisable as Victorian to the transformation that was rock’n’roll driven by the post-war generation and rise of multicultural Britain. Carol is a brilliant singer and having enjoyed her singing back in the early 70s with Uncle Dog, I would never have imagined the back story of her life at time when her performances oozed such confidence and she was rightly referred to as England’s Janice Joplin. When she sings the blues with such feeling it is because her life sprang from personal hardship, rejection and a gritty determination to overcome, which the blues and The Singer’s Tale richly evoke. Here’s hoping that Carol can share with us the rest of her story from the ‘80s to now.

5.0 out of 5 stars

Shakespeare”


A wonderful read, written with vivid detail

A wonderful read, written with vivid detail, straight from the heart. She has had an extraordinary life being born in London at the end of the 2nd. World War and going on, despite all the odds stacked against her, to become a professional singer working across the globe. Her writing engrosses you and is enlightening about the struggles of a girl growing up in post war Britain going on to become a renowned singer and, just as importantly for her, a mother. You feel almost a part of her personal struggles and joys – the different voices showing her insight, tenacity and humanity. She weaves a wonderful tale, and the book shows her talent as both a writer as well as a singer. An amazing journey!

5.0 out of 5 stars

EJane


This is such a beautiful book. It flows through time seamlessly with 3D …

This is such a beautiful book. It flows through time seamlessly with 3D perspective of an internal monologue. It is beautifully written and gripping.


This is such a beautiful book. It flows through time seamlessly with 3D perspective of an internal monologue. It is beautifully written and gripping.

5.0 out of 5 stars

Bytronaon


An excellent and compulsive read

A remarkable book – excellent and compulsive read – with the odds heavily stacked against her, Carol’s determination to make it as a singer would make a great film if it could capture the underlying theme of changing times from an era that was almost recognisable as Victorian to the transformation that was rock’n’roll driven by the post-war generation and rise of multicultural Britain. Carol is a brilliant singer and having enjoyed her singing back in the early 70s with Uncle Dog, I would never have imagined the back story of her life at time when her performances oozed such confidence and she was rightly referred to as England’s Janice Joplin. When she sings the blues with such feeling it is because her life sprang from personal hardship, rejection and a gritty determination to overcome, which the blues and The Singer’s Tale richly evoke. Here’s hoping that Carol can share with us the rest of her story from the ‘80s to now.

5.0 out of 5 stars

ByShakespeareon


The Singers Tale takes the reader from a time of greyness to a time of great colour, the 1960s’ and beyond

Carol Grimes transfers the reader into a time capsule of post WW2 England. She is stranded in the reality of broken and shattered London, where to say the least, life is challenging. The Singers Tale takes the reader from a time of greyness to a time of great colour , the 1960s’ and beyond. It was during this period of great hedonistic behaviour she came across and played with many of the iconic musicians and their managers who we know so well. A gripping read about who she met and how she struggled with life as a single mum. Chaucer would have been proud and hopefully there is a part 2 coming ?

5.0 out of 5 stars


Raw soul, Warm blood, London grime and laughter

I am a lifelong fan of Carol Grimes’ music so I couldn’t wait to read her story, and what a story it is. It reads like a fast paced novel that could have been written by someone like Kate Atkinson but is all the more poignant for being entirely true. She writes brilliantly, straight from the heart, with a raw, warts and all honesty tinged with irrepressible humour. The book hauntingly evokes past London, especially the Ladbroke Grove area of the 1960s and 70s, a crucial moment in Britain’s social and cultural history. As warm-blooded as her singing. I can’t wait for the next instalment!

5.0 out of 5 stars

Stevie Brixtonon 


Super – buy this book !

A wonderful tale, wrapped in music, revealing sharply observed social history in a life lived through the 40s -70s. Written with honesty, warmth and verve, well worth reading and pertinent today.

Pip
5.0 out of 5 stars

Sarah Craigon


An extraordinary Singer’s extraordinary Tale

This is a terrific book. The style is poetic and the phrasing sustained like a singer’s breath. I was completely drawn in and unable to put it down! Carol Grimes has had an extraordinary life and has an amazing tale to tell. I thoroughly recommend it.

5.0 out of 5 stars

anthony white


I love this book

I love this book. So vivid – she brings everything to life so well. Also so exciting- is she going to make it as a singer or has she missed the boat?
Thank goodness, she did make it and she is wonderful.


A few Reviews in the past for performing:

“Grimes has a fascinating story to tell.” London Jazz News.

“A great UK talent” John Fordham, The Guardian.

“A national treasure” Blues in Britain.

“The Edith Piaf of British music” Camden Review.

“As a woman and an artist, Carol has experienced much, learned more and conveys what she knows in a manner that genuinely connects.” TheVortex. 

“Expect darkness and light, ugliness and beauty, comedy and tradegy” Cheryl Moskowitz.