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  1. #1

    Marvin Gaye books

    I just finished reading the book, "After The Dance: My Life With Marvin Gaye" by his second wife, Jan Gaye, with David Ritz. Have any of you read the book? If so, I would love to hear your thoughts on it.

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    It is certainly an entertaining book, I can say that. I was hooked from the first page and read it very quickly. Is the book fact or fiction? Well... in that David Ritz knew Marvin Gaye and was such an expert on the man, that gives some credibility to Jan Gaye's story. Also, Jan Gaye certainly does nothing in the book to elevate her own reputation and appearance. She was an addict and nearly as screwed up as Marvin to keep going back, in spite of his abuse.

    And Marvin's issues with Christianity and religion! Wow! He was such a talented man, but he was very tormented and emotionally sick... He led a tragic life. After reading the book, I felt an extreme sense of sadness for him.

    Any other reactions to the book or to David Ritz's other Marvin bio, "Divided Soul"?

  2. #2
    I didn't read After The Dance but I picked up David Ritz's Divided Soul when it first came out after Marvin's death. Even though DS tells a tragic story, I still love the book for it's balance between Marvin's demons & his genius.

  3. #3
    The best book on Marvin remains Divided Soul.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    The best book on Marvin remains Divided Soul.
    With an honorable mention to Michael Eric Dyson's Mercy, Mercy Me: The Art, Loves and Demons of Marvin Gaye. Dyson's take captures Gaye's place within the African-American gospel-to-secular traditions masterfully (as always).

  5. #5
    I agree that Divided Soul is the one that rules them all

    I also enjoyed Whatís Going On by Ben Edmunds

    Other than the beginning and end of the book itís all about Whatís Going On

    I really appreciated the deep dive

    I wish that were more books like it that focused on a specific time in his life and not cradle to grave

    Iíd love books that just focused on him and Tammi and in our lifetime and his leaving Motown

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimal Saint View Post
    I agree that Divided Soul is the one that rules them all

    I also enjoyed What’s Going On by Ben Edmunds

    Other than the beginning and end of the book it’s all about What’s Going On

    I really appreciated the deep dive

    I wish that were more books like it that focused on a specific time in his life and not cradle to grave

    I’d love books that just focused on him and Tammi and in our lifetime and his leaving Motown
    Forgot to mention Ben Edmond's Making of What's Going On. I learned a lot of information on the making of (and the release of) the album that cemented Marvin Gaye as a serious artist. Recommended reading along with Divided Soul.

  7. #7
    A book on Marvin's period with Tammi Terrell would definitely be a great book. A book on his European exile/Belgium period should be real good too. His story had so many chapters in it... and I think there is too much focus on his death these days.

  8. #8
    David Ritz is a great writer and really captures his subjects well. I found "Divided Soul" fascinating and felt I understood Marvin much more after reading it. I agree the Ritz co-writer credit gives this one a leg up from the start.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by mistercarter2u View Post
    I just finished reading the book, "After The Dance: My Life With Marvin Gaye" by his second wife, Jan Gaye, with David Ritz. Have any of you read the book? If so, I would love to hear your thoughts on it.

    Name:  51ou15IAJmL.jpg
Views: 313
Size:  39.9 KB

    It is certainly an entertaining book, I can say that. I was hooked from the first page and read it very quickly. Is the book fact or fiction? Well... in that David Ritz knew Marvin Gaye and was such an expert on the man, that gives some credibility to Jan Gaye's story. Also, Jan Gaye certainly does nothing in the book to elevate her own reputation and appearance. She was an addict and nearly as screwed up as Marvin to keep going back, in spite of his abuse.

    And Marvin's issues with Christianity and religion! Wow! He was such a talented man, but he was very tormented and emotionally sick... He led a tragic life. After reading the book, I felt an extreme sense of sadness for him.

    Any other reactions to the book or to David Ritz's other Marvin bio, "Divided Soul"?
    I agree with all your recollections. I especially gobbled up the early days, pre-stardom. And Marvin's family dynamics/dysfunction after success and when it wanted too. Excellent read!

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