Apr 29, 2014
Reading Bill Medley’s autobiography, "The Time of My Life: A Righteous Brother's Memoir," I was struck by something he may find odd:
His career could have come crashing down probably a dozen times since it began 50 years, starting with his first breakup with the late Bobby Hatfield, his singing partner in the Righteous Brothers, continuing through the murder of his first wife, his career as a restaurateur, and so many songs he turned down that became monster hits for others.
BILL MEDLEY podcast excerpt: "Phil Everly, Brian Wilson and myself did 'In My Room' together for an album a few years ago. Brian and I have been friends since we all started out together in the early '60s. I love to listen to that record. You hear Brian's voice, then Phil Everly's voice. It really warms my heart. Anybody that did harmony listened to the Everly Brothers."
But he always managed to pick up the pieces, reorganize, find a new partner or path. Whatever it took, Bill Medley was not going to be stopped... all the way to the 2003 induction of the Righteous Brothers in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.
And, oh, the colorful characters he met – and a few he romanced – along the way: The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, Phil Spector, Darlene Love, Connie Stevens, and Frank Sinatra, to name a few.
BILL MEDLEY excerpt: "If I was going to do the book, I wanted to do it as honestly as I could -- right, wrong or indifferent. I certainly didn't want to turn our audience off -- people who love the Righteous Brothers. Bobby Hatfield and I loved each other a lot. We were just absolutely two different guys and we had two different comfort levels. We didn't know that at the beginning. The first three years, we just accidentally had a hit with 'Little Latin Lupe Lu.' We were like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid; we didn't think it was gonna last."
"The Time of My Life: A Righteous Brother's Memoir" is the rare rock autobiography that reads like a genuine memoir. It won’t change your life the way Keith Richards did in his, but the authenticity of Bill Medley’s storytelling and the input and contributions of his lifelong friends will move you.
As for his new CD, Your Heart To Mine – it’s a slow, bluesy take on songs you know but likely have never heard Bill Medley sing. My favorites? “Rock Me Baby” and “Hold On I’m Comin’.”