A Golden Globe–winning actress tells the story of her life as a singer/songwriter who unexpectedly became a TV star.
Sagal grew up with two parents who had artistic aspirations. Her mother had been a TV screenwriter, and her quick-tempered, workaholic father had dropped out of Harvard Law School to become a respected TV director. But their home life was turbulent. The author’s stay-at-home mother suffered from depression and heart disease and died when she was young, and the father she feared died when she was in her mid-20s. Through all the personal difficulties, Sagal's saving grace was music. Acting was an afterthought, something her father thought she did well and that got her into the Cal Arts theater arts program. After dropping out of college in the mid-1970s, Sagal found work as an actress in a touring musical and then in a restaurant as a singing waitress, where she met and began dating Kiss lead singer Gene Simmons. She then became a backup singer for Bette Midler; in the meantime, an early marriage fell apart. A brush with cancer during this period led to her recovery from alcohol and the pills to which she had become addicted as a teenager struggling with weight issues. By the mid-1980s, Sagal was discovered by an agent who helped her land the role of sex-starved housewife Peg Bundy in Married…With Children, which ran for 10 years. Offscreen, she married—and later divorced—her second husband, had two children, remarried a third time, and had a child via a surrogate mother. Despite her acting success, Sagal admits that “it took me years to feel like I belonged” on TV, just as it took her time to get used to turning 60. While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping.
A candid, reflective memoir.