As heard on Sirius XM Radio and NPR stations!
Over 9 Hours Of Entertainment! "For many years, friends and family have asked me, 'Bill, why don't you write a book about your life? You must have had quite a childhood growing up with your dad, Harpo, and those zany uncles of yours, the Marx Brothers. And what about those weird, maybe fatalistic happenings you've experienced that can only be described as 'too-Hollywood-to-believe?'"
Son of Harpo Speaks! A Family Portrait, was produced, written, and narrated, with voices and music, by Bill Marx and produced by Joe Bevilacqua. It was co-produced, directed, edited, and digitally mastered by Gerry Bucci at Gerico 1 Media. Buy the companion book here: http://www.sonofharpospeaks.com/orhttp://www.amazon.com/Son-Harpo-Speaks-Bill-Marx/dp/1593930623
I have long been a fan of Harpo Marx, having read Harpo Speaks, so I was naturally curious as to the point of view of his son. I bought the book on a lark, hoping that it would be, if not at least interesting, then perhaps it would have some funny family stories. To my delight, the book was insightful, fun and yes, interesting. Bill Marx has a good speaking voice and the stories are presented in a way that make you feel as if you are sitting on the couch in his home, sipping a warm beverage and speaking to him in person. I enjoyed it and am very happy that I have this in my collection. I will recommend this to friends and know that they will enjoy it as much as I have.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
I found the content of this book quite delightful. Hearing Mr. Marx's reminisces of his childhood and music career, with and without his famous dad, was very enjoyable. Bill's delivery of his story was engaging as well. What I didn't like was the overall production of the material. In sections, the music that should have played "under" Marx's narration was so loud I could barely hear him. There were sections that sounded like it was being recorded in a bathroom, some that sounded muffled and some that were just ... odd. I "get" what was trying to be done with the echo effect on Harpo's "heavenly voice;" it was just poorly executed. The harp glissandos that occasionally popped up were poorly recorded. I would love to hear this book with better production values. Still, I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of Bill Marx and his dad.
Would you try another book from Bill Marx and/or Bill Marx?
His stories might all be exhausted.
What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?
Growing up in the proximity of the Marx Brothers is everything to this story.
Which character – as performed by Bill Marx – was your favorite?
Harpo Marx. Since we really don't know what Harpo sounded like, I figure Bill's impersonation has to be a very close approximation. Because his impersonation also sounds like Groucho it sounds authentic to me.
What else would you have wanted to know about Bill Marx’s life?
I wish he would have spent more time talking about being in the presence of Chico and Groucho.
Any additional comments?
This is one of the most produced audio books I have ever heard. There are plenty of music cues and other audio enhancements that work for the most part although a few can be discordant and some are louder than Bill's voice. Bill has a great voice. I wish he read books professionally.
His story of meeting Buddy Rich
The circumstances which led to his adoption and the backstory of his birth parents.
His musical ability and career
The kindness of Harpo Marx and how well thought of he was in Hollywood.
The story is good, but the narration is often not clear because the clown and keyboard music is louder than the reading. there is also many instances where sound effects are unnecessarily used while reading.
I didn't expect it to be filled front to back with great stories about the Marx Brothers. I wanted to learn about his life BUT I didn't expect it to be a book about times AWAY from the Marx family. Sadly, that's the story. He was away from his family a lot and he tries to deal with those memories and feelings.
Just a warning - you will hear more about going to see baseball games than Uncle Groucho coming over.
Its a great memoir about the plight of being an adoptive child and problems with abandonment issues but other than that, if you are looking for a behind the scenes book about the entertainment business - this is not it.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful
I've not seen many Marx brothers movies or shows so I found the audio clips of what must be famous and memorable scenes repetitive and overlong. I only got halfway through before I gave up.