'My first reaction when I saw the advert for this book was something like, 'Oh God, not another Bolan book!' I mean, what else can one say that hasn't been said already? As a true Bolanite I had bought, and read studiously, every book on Marc's life I could since his untimely passing including the authors' previous Bolan biography, 'Electric Warrior' back in 1979, and yet I still found myself in need of answers. This book provides these answers, and more.
Firstly, I have to say the author has put a massive amount of work and research into this book, which clearly shows, not only his love and knowledge for all things Bolan, but like me, a desire for the truth and the reappraisal the subject deserves.
What intrigued me upon my first reading of the 'Cosmic Dancer' were the depth the author explored and told the story of Marc's early life, his schooling, his love for art and music, which really brought to life, as it were, Marc's passion and enthusiasm at such an early age to be a star. It is plain to see from the text that nothing was going to stop Marc from being a success. And you have to praise Marc's parents, Phyllis and Simeon (Syd), for recognising his talent so early in life and encouraging him at every turn.
Throughout the book, the author takes the reader on a magic carpet ride through three decades of pure rock 'n' roll history and explores in great details the world of Marc Bolan. The story of each album is told in great depth, of how the albums came together, sometimes on the most slender of budgets. Also described in great detail is Marc's increased use of alcohol and drugs and how they led to the break-up of friendships and his marriage and also how they affected his judgement through what I call the 'low period'; i.e. late 1973 to early 1976. (I must admit there were a few occasions upon reading how Marc used people for his own ends and dropped them when his goal had been achieved angered me enough to swear under my breath!)
Overall, 'Cosmic Dancer' is an awesome read for any Bolan fan as well as music fans in general and one that, to me personally, stands head and shoulders above all the other Bolan biographies to date. Packed with rarely seen photographs, it tells the truth based on facts and interviews from those closest to Marc. Sometimes the truth is painful to read, and that's why I love this book. A quote from Andy Ellison on the back cover reads: 'Paul Roland has written the definitive book about Marc Bolan; an overdue reassessment....' Is it the 'Definitive' biography? I cannot answer that, as I believe the answer lies in the eyes of the reader. What I will say is I do not believe anyone could write a more definitive story of Marc Bolan's life other than Marc himself.
Buy it, read it, and enjoy it.
Keep A Little Marc In Your Hearts.