New John Barry biography was a `labour of love`
For Stourbridge civil servant Pete Walker completing his âlabour of loveâ took more than two decades.
The 49-year-old author has co-written John Barry: The Man with the Midas Touch, which claims to be a definitive biography of the famous musician, reports Stourbridge News
Best known for James Bond scores including Goldfinger and Diamonds are Forever, Barryâs fans have hailed the book âa bible about Barryâ and word has spread as far as Irish national radio.
Itâs all a far cry from the bookâs humble beginnings, which date back to when Pete met co-authors Geoff Leonard and Gareth Bramley in 1981.
Pete, of Ridgacre Lane, Quinton, said: âWe met by chance when Geoff wrote to me and pretty much started working on the book from there.
âWe have put a lot of research in, travelling round the country to interview different people, fitting it in around the day job.
âThere were occasions when we feared it would never be finished - itâs been an intense labour of love for all of us.â
Barry is the UKâs most successful Oscar winner with five statuettes. He began his career with The John Barry Seven and graduated from arranging hits for Adam Faith to scoring hit movies such as Out of Africa and Dances with Wolves.
The 300-page biography includes more than 200 photographs and follows Barryâs life and career from his formative years growing up in York to his life in Oyster Bay, New York, where he now lives.
Pete, who works as a disability employment advisor at Stourbridge Jobcentre, added: âI have always found his music very inspiring.
The arrangements are always original, you can always tell when a piece of music is by him.â
Published by Redcliffe Press and priced at Â£19.99, The Man with the Midas Touch is available from bookshops and online, or from the John Barry website at www.johnbarry.org.uk
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