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The Eric Carr Story (English Edition) Format Kindle
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I'm sure that I'm not the only person who feels this way, and for that; Long Island journalist Greg Prato has written a biographical book on the Fox of KISS. His book, The Eric Carr Story, is very refreshing when compared to The Tale of the Fox (which was very sentimental and beautiful, but still lacked certain details of the Fox's life). However...there's still a lot of information that Prato's book, just as Jack Edward Sawyers' documentary, lacks.
With all of this being said, below are the listed positives and negatives to Prato's The Eric Carr Story:
Interviewed by Prato are the people who knew Eric Carr the best: the Kulick brothers, Bob Ezrin, Bill Aucoin (this book contains one of the very last interviews Aucoin conducted before his death), Slaughter's Mark Slaughter and Blas Elias, Black N' Blue's Jaime St. James, Carr's girlfriend Carrie Stevens, and, among others, Carr's sister Loretta Caravello (for those of you who are wondering and/or don't know, Carr's real name was Paul Caravello). As the Kulick brothers (in what Prato calls his "history lessons" on KISS) expose many mistruths that have been confirmed elsewhere (such as Bruce ***only*** being called to play on the Animalize tour after Bob had turned Paul Stanley down), they also help us to see Carr's many frustrations and struggles within KISS. Other friends of Carr are there to share what they experienced with Carr firsthand in the very last days of Carr's life--most notably his most turbulent days in KISS. The stories are very sad--and also different. Fortunately enough, Carrie Stevens is there to make the confusion into clarity, and rightfully so: she was with Carr all the way in the very last days of his life (and, of course, his very last days in KISS) and saw everything that happened more than anyone else did (except maybe Carr's family). Ezrin has many kind words to say about Carr--which is admirable given Carr's upset about Ezrin directing KISS in the direction of a concept album--and Aucoin shares what Carr's "legal" position in KISS was from the very beginning to the very end (while Aucoin left the KISS management nine years before Carr passed away, he also revealed to Greg Prato that he and Carr kept in touch up until Carr's 1991 passing from heart cancer). And everyone--most notably the Kulick brothers, Carrie Stevens, and Jaime St. James--help us see Carr for who he was, warts and all; his insecurities, his most admirable qualities, and his most disappointing qualities as well.
Readers walk away from The Eric Carr Story having learned only a tidbit of information about Eric Carr's childhood, and hardly anything about Carr's life in the 60's and 70's local New York City music scene (the story from the 70's about the fire at Gulliver's night club in NYC has been around for years, and even aired back on CBS in 1974--Wikipedia). There are many, many stories that I've heard about Eric that are completely fascinating (some sad, some happy) that are missing from this book: Eric having to turn down Ace Frehley's offer to play on the Spaceman's Trouble Walkin' solo album because of, you guessed it...the opposition of Gene and Paul. Gene and Paul throwing Motley Crue off of the Creatures of the Night tour as a result of Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee tag teaming Eric's girlfriend at the time (this was in Nikki's The Heroin Diaries memoir and, while it may seem out of place, Motley Crue and their first opening for KISS are in fact mentioned in here as part of Greg Prato's "history lesson" on KISS.) What Bruce Kulick posted on his website about how strong Eric was on the day that he shot the God Gave Rock and Roll to You II music video, wearing a cross shirt and feeling so strong that he could even drive Bruce around (keep in mind, he was battling cancer...) There's a great deal learned, but there's also a great deal missing. I know that this may not be Eric's autobiography (sadly, we will never see one), but for the best comprehensive biography on Eric, stories like these deserve a place in the official book on Eric.
The Eric Carr Story is worth buying for all that you ***will*** learn about Eric Carr, but the late Fox of KISS deserves a more comprehensive biography.
P.S. Wikipedia covers many of the things about Eric that I mentioned as missing from this book.
The year-by-year chapter chronology traces all the highlights of Carr's life, both before KISS and then through every subsequent album and tour that followed. Besides the input from those close to the KISS camp at the time (including some former bandmembers' ex-wives--it's that thorough!) and the assorted hard rock heroes of the day, Prato also scored full cooperation from those closest personally to Carr, including his youngest sister Loretta and Eric's longtime girlfriend to the end, Carrie Stevens.
Speaking as a KISS fan, there was a lot I didn't know revealed in this book (far more than Ace Frehley's disappointing "No Regrets," which itself contains only about a page and a half's worth of ink on the Fox). I won't spoil the surprises here, but the final year of Carr's life is absolutely devastating, and even the most diehard KISS fans will be thrown by the numerous grievances that Eric harbored (privately) toward Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley.
"The Eric Carr Story" is an excellent companion piece to David Leaf and Ken Sharp's 2003 authorized biography of the band, "KISS: Behind the Mask - The Official Authorized Biography." It's a bull's-eye at fleshing out its subject as a wholly human being, from his highs as a jokester, songwriter and innovative drummer (one of the first arena acts to experiment with electronic pads and samples) to his less assured moments (crippling insecurities, a perfectionist work ethic and slavish devotion to his bosses in KISS, even right after chemotherapy). This was one of my favorite books of 2011, and I eagerly await the author's next chronicle of another legendary skinsman: Carmine Appice!