November 17, 2015

Review: Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) in Song by Sara Bareilles

Title: Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) in Song 
Author: Sara Bareilles
Publisher: Oct. 6, 2015
Published: Simon & Schuster
Hardcover: 208 pgs

Amazon / Good Reads / Barnes & Noble

A candid and down-to-earth collection of essays by five-time, Grammy Award nominated singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles, exploring her life in song; raw, evocative, and utterly unforgettable.

Sara Bareilles shot to fame in 2007 with her hit single; Love Song, and her more recent chart-topping hit; Brave, but her journal as a songwriter started long before. In this candid book of essays, Sara pulls back the curtain to expose her songwriting process, revealing all the struggle and joy inherent in creating great work while staying true to yourself.

Showcasing her stripped down and confessional writing style, Sara's entertaining and inspirational book tells the inside stories behind her most popular songs and offers insights into finding balance between making art for herself and commercial music for her listeners.

I can't quite pinpoint the moment I became a Sara Bareilles fan. It may have been as I was on a Pandora search for great female artists. It may have been when Love Song first came on the scene. It was certainly cemented once I heard some of her earlier songs, like Gravity, and her latest hit, Brave, which I've probably listened to a thousand times. Either way, no matter how I arrived at the fandom, I am here, and I am here for life.

My love for this book put me on a very similar journey. I can't pinpoint for you the exact moment I fell in love with it, but by the end, I was so sad that it was over.

Sara is an incredible author. Her sense of humor and brutal honesty leads to an autobiography the likes of which you've never seen. She goes back to her roots and shares an intense story of where her love for music came from, and as you read, you realize that this love is deeply ingrained in her soul. There is nothing else in the world that Sara was meant to do besides become a musician.

I think what I loved most about this book is how relatable and honest Sara is with the reader. So often, once someone becomes a celebrity, it's easy for us "common folk" to look at their lives in complete awe. As if everything must be and must always have been the greatest adventure for them. She must be so happy all the time. She must love having her photo taken. She must love being adored. She must feel so beautiful. But in this book, Sara reveals just how much she's like every other woman in the world. She has moments of self-doubt. She is constantly wondering whether she's good enough, whether her music is what she wants it to be - what her fans want it to be. She is, in a word, real.

I adored reading how some of Sara's greatest songs were brought to life and the stories behind them. I loved feeling the emotions that she went through as she brought the words to life. She has a fantastic knack for evoking emotion in the reader by simply being authentic.

Everyone should read this book. If only to remind yourself that your dreams can come true, just like Sara's did. It won't be easy. It won't be without doubts. It will be slow and feel like a freaking marathon. But in the end, you will end up exactly where you were meant to be. Listen to your heart (or in Sara's case, your song) and you can't go wrong.

5 out of 5 stars!

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