A MemoirBook - 2010
FOR OVER THREE DECADES ROSANNE CASH has been one of the most compelling figures in popular music, having moved gracefully from Nashville stardom to acclaim as a singer-songwriter and author of essays and short stories. Her remarkable body of work has often been noted for its emotional acuity, its rich and resonant imagery, and its unsparing honesty. Those qualities have enabled her to establish a unique intimacy with her audiences, and it is those qualities that inform her long-awaited memoir.
Composed is the story of an artist finding her voice-both figuratively and literally-in the context of her family legacy, of the commercial imperatives of the music business, and of a desire to preserve some measure of privacy in a life that has been too often subjected to public scrutiny. Beginning with a childhood spent on an almost surreal, snake-infested Southern California hilltop, Cash traces her fraught relationship with her father, country legend Johnny cash, whose frequent absences and struggles with drugs left her mother, Vivian, disappointed and bitter. She shares her memories of a comical stint at a job in London, a hapless twenty-year-old desperate to find her own style, and of cutting her own first record on a German label. She recalls gradually working her way to chart-topping success, her marriage to Rodney Crowell-a union that made them country music's premier couple-and the composition and recording of the landmark album Interiors . After leaving Nashville and Crowell for New York, she confronts the loss of her parents, charting the course of her mourning through music, and finds fulfilment in motherhood and in her husband and musical collaborator, John Leventhal.
As moving, disarming, and elusive as one of her classic songs, Composed is Rosanne Cash's luminous testament to the power of art, tradition, and love to transform a life.