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 Posted:   Aug 12, 2014 - 1:15 PM   
 By:   James MacMillan   (Member)

Elmer Bernstein's first wife Pearl has written a charming memoir about her life with the composer. A fascinating (and at times witty) read - available for a very modest fee on Amazon Kindle. More details here -

http://www.themagnificentelmer.com


- JMM.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 13, 2014 - 12:26 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

I can download this for $6.99 at Amazon. Looks interesting. I just hope that someday in my life time we get full biographies of both Elmer Bernstein and Jerry Goldsmith.

Thanks for posting this.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 10:24 AM   
 By:   James MacMillan   (Member)

Joan, thanks for the response, and do let us know what you think of the book when you have read it. The author's tales of early married life in NYC and subsequent introduction to the film world are of great interest.

I'd have thought such a book about one of the greatest music practitioners in American cinema might have garnered a little more attention on these pages...

- James.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 2:13 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

I'd really like to get the paperback or Audio Book version. Hope they are released soon!

Looks wonderful! Thanks for the heads up James!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 2:59 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

I can download this for $6.99 at Amazon. Looks interesting. I just hope that someday in my life time we get full biographies of both Elmer Bernstein and Jerry Goldsmith.

Thanks for posting this.


It seems today it's actually only $1.99 to download for the next two days at least!

For those interested:

http://www.amazon.com/Magnificent-Elmer-Pearl-Bernstein-Gardner-ebook/dp/B00LT4OB3I/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1408024732&sr=1-1&keywords=the+magnificent+elmer

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 3:18 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

Thank you, Zooba. I was going to download it in the next few days, and your message just saved me $5.00. Hope others get this one soon.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 4:05 PM   
 By:   Rozsaphile   (Member)

Should be fascinating. You see the phrase "former wife/husband" and you expect at least pain and maybe payback. Apparently this memoir avoids those pitfalls. I hope the present limitation to the Kindle platform is not a sign of Amazon's high-handed tactics. (I have a Nook, but it looks as if I must wait for the print version.)

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 4:58 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Thank you, Zooba. I was going to download it in the next few days, and your message just saved me $5.00. Hope others get this one soon.

My pleasure Joan. Please post your review or thoughts once you've read it!

 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 6:24 PM   
 By:   Jeff Eldridge   (Member)

Have read about 25% of the book. So far I've learned that Aaron Copland wrote Bolero and that the Dodgers played the Cubs in LA during production of The Man with the Golden Arm (1955), even though the Dodgers didn't leave Brooklyn until 1958.

 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 8:01 PM   
 By:   Jeff Eldridge   (Member)

Have now read 71% of the book. Just learned that in early 1956, Elmer Bernstein encountered Leonard Bernstein, who was visiting LA to score On the Waterfront, which had been released in 1954.

 
 Posted:   Aug 16, 2014 - 8:54 PM   
 By:   Jeff Eldridge   (Member)

In the author's note at the end of the memoir, the author asks readers to take pity on a senior citizen and refrain from e-mailing her to point out that the Dodgers didn't move to LA until a couple years after The Man with the Golden Arm was released.

The memoir was pleasant enough and I don't regret spending the $1.99 + $0.19 tax, but if factual inaccuracies like those mentioned above really bug you, be forewarned. The acknowledgments indicate a number of people assisted the author in producing this manuscript; it's unfortunate that someone didn't spell-check and fact-check it a bit better.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 25, 2014 - 9:21 AM   
 By:   James MacMillan   (Member)

Fair enough, Jeff, but try looking for the best bits rather than those rather negative examples you've picked out!

I've just re-read the thing and, yes, there are even one or two other factual errors, but it certainly didn't mar my over-all enjoyment. It's a worthy effort. I learned from it and would recommend it to anyone interested in good film music, EB fans in particular.

- James.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 25, 2014 - 9:46 AM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

I have to go through a pile of reserved books before I can get to this one. Glad it is on my Kindle and look forward to reading it.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 3:32 PM   
 By:   James MacMillan   (Member)

For those who prefer actual books to hold and turn pages, the paperback edition is now available from amazon -

http://www.themagnificentelmer.com


- JMM.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 2, 2014 - 10:33 AM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

And what I've learned, Jeff, is that when Elmer was considering the Preminger offer to score MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM in 1955, he consulted with Ernest Gold about his experience working with Preminger on EXODUS in 1960.

So yes, peripheral factoids herein must be taken with a saline grain, but so far I'm very much enjoying the lady's memories to which only she was privy. And I find myself wishing that the wives and ex-wives of all my other favorite composers had written books.

 
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