Simple Dreams

A Musical Memoir

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Twelve-time Grammy winner Linda Ronstadt weaves together a captivating story of her origins in Tucson, Arizona, and her rise to stardom in the Southern California music scene of the 1960s and ’70s.

Born into a musical family, Ronstadt’s childhood was filled with everything from Hank Williams to Gilbert and Sullivan, Mexican folk music to jazz and opera. Her artistic curiosity blossomed early, and she and her siblings began performing their own music for anyone who would listen.

When she arrived in Los Angeles the folk-rock movement was just beginning to bloom, and after the dissolution of her first band, Ronstadt went out on her own and quickly found success. As part of the coterie that played at the Troubadour club in West Hollywood, she helped define the musical style that dominated American music in the 1970s, and became the most successful female artist of the decade. She has sold more than 100 million records, won numerous awards, toured all over the world, and collaborated with legends such as Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton, Aaron Neville, J.D. Souther, Randy Newman, Neil Young, Bette Midler, and Frank Sinatra, as well as Homer Simpson and Kermit the Frog. By the time she retired in 2009, Ronstadt had spent four decades as one of the most popular singers in the world, becoming the first female artist in popular music to release four consecutive platinum albums.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 256 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451668742 | 
  • September 2013
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Video

Linda Ronstadt Talks About Her Career and New Memoir

Linda Ronstadt on her deep love for singing, her advice to new artists, and being present for the birth of Southern California rock.

Read an Excerpt

Simple Dreams 1 Tucson
JULY 1946

ON HER WAY TO the hospital the day I was born, my mother wanted to stop and eat a hamburger. She was hungry, and maybe wanted to fortify herself against the brutally hard work of pushing out a baby, a task that lay immediately and ominously before her. It was raining hard, and the streets were badly flooded. My father, a prudent man, wanted to be sure I was born in the hospital and not in his car. He loved my mother tenderly and was unlikely to deny her anything within reason, but he denied her... see more

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