Bert Jansch Remembered with New Memoir
Published Nov 26, 2013Scottish folk hero Bert Jansch passed away in 2011 after battling cancer, but he's definitely not forgotten. Since his death, the onetime Pentangle member has been remembered with a reissue and a re-cut documentary, and now he's set to be celebrated with a new book called Bert Jansch - Living with the Legend.
This memoir comes via the songwriter's ex-wife Heather Jansch (née Sewell), who collected memories, photos, letters, drawings, lyrics and other personal artifacts for the book.
In a statement on her website, Heather Jansch explained that she began working on the book after members of the press contacted her following Bert's death. She issued a public statement at the time, and that brief piece of writing brought up memories of the past and spawned a much larger project.
"It become apparent that there was a need for a book that would tell something of the man, the very private man, behind the music who was propelled to a life he never sought," she explained in a statement. "Begun as a personal and cathartic wake, thirty thousand words later I was still writing and a book was emerging. Now, nearly two years on, it is done. I hope his fans find it a fitting tribute."
A British pound from each sale will go towards Macmillan Cancer Support. No specific release date is mentioned on Heather Jansch's website, although the book is supposed to be out this month. See a 17-page sample and, if you're so inclined, order a copy here.
UPDATE: The book is due out December 2 via Olchard Press.
Bert and Heather married in 1968, and the singer apparently wrote many of his songs about her. After they separated in the '70s, they remained friends and didn't divorce until 1988. Bert eventually married Lauren Auerbach (who also succumbed to cancer in 2011), but he continued to keep in touch with Heather.