Horricks, Raymond (Anthony) 1933-
HORRICKS, Raymond (Anthony) 1933-
PERSONAL: Born April 20, 1933, in Withington, England; son of Francis (a chemist) and May (Ingham) Horricks; married Sheila Rossini Sexton, February 14, 1956 (divorced, 1977); children: Justine Gabrielle. Ethnicity: "North-West Mercian Anglo-Saxon." Education: Attended City Literary Institute, London, England; attended Sorbonne, University of Paris, 1949-50. Politics: "Social Democrat Bonapartist." Religion: "Roman Catholic, student of Zen." Hobbies and other interests: Reading, walking, Wren architecture, travel.
CAREER: Decca Records, London, England, publicist and staff producer, 1955-60; PRT/Associated Television, London, producer, 1960-63; freelance music producer, 1963—. Military service: British Army, Royal Signal Corps, 1950-53; served in Egypt, Jordan, and Cyprus; became senior non-commissioned officer.
MEMBER: International Institute of Arts and Letters (fellow).
AWARDS, HONORS: Named producer of the year, Daily Mail, 1963; Critics' Award, Gramophone, 1974, for "Owen Brannigan's Tyneside"; Critics' Award, Guardian, 1979, for two monographs on Rudyard Kipling.
(With Alun Morgan) Modern Jazz: A Survey of Developments since 1939, Victor Gollancz (London, England), 1956, reprinted, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1977.
(Editor and contributor) These Jazzmen of Our Time, photographs by Herman Leonard, Victor Gollancz (London, England), 1962.
(Editor, with Peter Gammond) The Music Goes Round and Round: A Cool Look at the Record Industry, Quartet (New York, NY), 1980.
(Editor, with Peter Gammond) Brass Bands, Patrick Stephens (Cambridge, England), 1980.
(Editor, with Peter Gammond) Big Bands, Patrick Stephens (Cambridge, England), 1981.
Marshal Ney: The Romance and the Real, Hippocrene (New York, NY), 1982, 4th edition published as Military Politics from Bonaparte to the Bourbons: The Life and Death of Michel Ney, 1769-1815, Transaction Books (New Brunswick, NJ), 1995.
Stephane Grappelli; or, The Violin with Wings: A Profile, discography by Tony Middleton, Hippocrene (New York, NY), 1983.
Dizzy Gillespie and the Be-bop Revolution, discography by Tony Middleton, Hippocrene (New York, NY), 1984.
Svengali; or, The Orchestra Called Gill Evans, discography by Tony Middleton, Hippocrene (New York, NY), 1984.
Quincy Jones, discography by Tony Middleton, Hippocrene (New York, NY), 1985.
Gerry Mulligan's Ark, discography by Tony Middleton, Apollo (London, England), 1986, Owlet Press (New York, NY), 2003.
In Flight with the Eagle: A Guide to Napoleon's Elite, Costello (Tunbridge Wells, England), 1988, 2nd edition published as Napoleon's Elite, Transaction Books (New Brunswick, NJ), 1995.
The Importance of Being Eric Dolphy, Costello (Tunbridge Wells, England), 1988.
(Editor) Military Mayhem, Costello (Tunbridge Wells, England), 1989, revised and updated edition published as Military Mindlessness: An Informal Compendium, Transaction Books (New Brunswick, NJ), 1995.
Lightning Elite: Israel's Defence Force, Archway (London, England), 1989.
All the Cardinal's Men, Owlet Press (New York, NY), 2000.
Constructive Warriors, Owlet Press (New York, NY), 2002.
Author of Cardinal Mazarin: To Grow a King. Also author of television movies, including The Great Isle of Wight Train Robbery and a sixteenth-century trilogy, Paris Is Worth a Mass. Contributor to books, including Duke Ellington, edited by Peter Gammond, Phoenix House, 1960; The Oxford Book of Military Anecdotes, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 1985; Napoleon's Marshals, Weidenfeld & Nicolson (London, England), 1988; and Chambers Biographical Dictionary. Contributor of articles and reviews to magazines and newspapers, including Crescendo International. Scriptwriter and broadcaster for stations LCB and BFBS.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Mission: Impossible, a Lifetime in Music, with Lalo Schifrin.
SIDELIGHTS: When Modern Jazz: A Survey of Developments since 1939 first appeared, it was the first book to analyze developments in jazz music since 1939. Raymond Horricks once told CA that the book "describes how modern jazz developed out of the swing era and earlier jazz." It includes profiles of such jazz musicians as Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker, as well as biographies of younger, lesser-known performers. Horricks also wrote one of the first detailed studies of Count Basie and his orchestra. The Music Goes Round and Round: A Cool Look at the Record Industry examines the history of the recording industry, both classical and popular, from the invention of the phonograph by Thomas Edison to modern developments like rock music.
Marshal Ney: The Romance and the Real represents a departure from the author's writing on music and musicians. Horricks described the book as "a full-length biography and character study of Napoleon's marshal, who came so close to snatching victory from Wellington at Waterloo in 1915. The book concludes with a lengthy examination of Ney's mistakes and near-successes, with the heroism of his trial and execution as a finale."
Horricks added: "My writing is motivated mainly by curiosity, a compulsion to know more, tempered with the acceptance that one can only deal with a limited number of subjects. The Marshal Ney quest began when I came across François Rude's statue of him in Paris and recognized in an instant how little I knew about the man. I was subsequently commissioned to write about violinist Stephane Grappelli, but I didn't just want to write a standard biography of him. Nor did I know that it would involve me in a five-year libel action, expensively won by me, brought by a purely peripheral person mentioned in the book. That is why I have now written a book against English libel law. The same book is perfectly protected under U.S. law.
"Despite my two, long, published books about Napoleon and his elite, Cardinal Richelieu is the historical figure I regard with the most awe. I admire his intelligence, his statesmanship, his patriotism and national vision, and his patronage of the arts in France. But I would tremble to have been one of his enemies.
"As regards music, both as a producer and a writer, I have been determined to stick to a nonsectarian approach. I work with material on and write about Johann Sebastian Bach, Sir Thomas Beecham, and Paul Tortelier on the one hand, and Frank Sinatra and Duke Ellington and the giants of modern jazz on the other. Moreover, I have tried to work for the prosperity of music. I can only write with enthusiasm. If I don't like it, I won't knock it; I just leave it alone. In my magazine articles, I insist on being called a writer about music, never a critic.
"Apart from musicians and certain figures in history, my main admirations have been for painters like Rembrandt van Rijn, Francisco de Goya, and Paul Gauguin, and writers: the Greek dramatists, the Latin poets, then Michel Eyquem de Montaigne, Stendahl, Charles Baudelaire, and Ernest Hemingway. The two most direct, personal influences upon me amongst writers have been John Cowper Powys and Richard Hughes. I'm also much influenced by the spirit of place: the green mysteries of Cheshire, the wildness of l'Ardèche, and the unexpectedness of Berlin, the simple truths of the desert in Egypt, the colors of Morocco (where I made field recordings), and now, where I live, on the Isle of Wight.
"Unless off the island to meet publishers or do a broadcast, I work from five in the morning until midday. In the afternoon I do 'nuts and bolts' (office work, letters) and in the evening, unless I have visitors, I read or watch videos. Between six o'clock and eight I drink white wine in my 'local' and then turn in around eleven. Now that I am aging, I have come to the realization that I will continue to be a writer until just before I go into my box. If you accept its spinoffs—in my case, scriptwriting, broadcasting, et cetera—I would add that I'm not all that good at anything else.
"My advice to aspiring young writers is: Do everything you do to the utmost. While I was awaiting my entry into the Sorbonne, and because my father refused to finance me, I swept the streets of Paris. I realized there is a right way and a wrong way to sweep a street. And even today I could give anyone a conducted tour of Paris."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Crescendo International, January, 1984.
Times Literary Supplement, January 14, 1983.