PERFORMING ARTS

Fairytale: The Pointer Sisters’ Family Story

Wyatt-MacKenzie. Feb. 2020. 258p. ISBN 9781948018395. pap. $22. MUSIC
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In the Seventies, with a penchant for vintage fashion and melodious vocal harmonies, June, Bonnie, Anita, and Ruth Pointer resurrected the sister group phenomenon, popularized in the 1930s and 1940s by the Andrews Sisters and Boswell Sisters. The Pointer Sisters found immense popular, critical, and commercial success across pop, rock, R&B, jazz, and country and Western music. Here, middle child Anita Pointer, “the rational and reasonable one,” along with her older brother Fritz, composes a rich and passionate family story. The Pointers talk about famous family athletes, such as baseball player Aaron Pointer and NBA star Paul Silas, but they aren’t afraid to address sadness. The group also endured constant financial and interpersonal strains—particularly heartbreaking is the description of June’s rape at age 15, and the resulting psychological and physical trauma. A 65-page collection of photographs from the Pointer Family picture album is also a crowd-pleaser.
VERDICT By turns lovely and sad, and given the Pointers’ popularity and longevity, this moving chronicle of a profoundly talented family singing group will make a solid addition to all music collections.

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