The author of these two books is a mighty professional whose mastery of the oral narrative provides the framework upon which they're built. Prato has written several earlier tomes, including Touched by Magic: The Tommy Bolin Story, Grunge is Dead: The Oral History of Seattle Rock Music, and A Devil On One Shoulder and An Angel On the Other: The Story of Shannon Hoon and Blind Melon, and each time he has brought the magic of the oral narrative to bear.
In the Carr book,
Prato hunts down a variety of pivotal characters in the KISS drummer's life, including producers Michael James Jackson, Ron Nevison and Bob Ezrin; KISS manager Bill Aucoin, musicians Carmine Appice, Rod Morgenstein and Bruce Kulick; and a variety of crew, media, record label people and friends.
It is an insightful and touching look at Carr's life up until his death on November 24, 1991.
The MTV book traces the launch of the video music channel on August 1, 1981, and the way music fans began "listening with their eyes." Here the author has tracked down a who's-who of musicians and businesspeople, including MTV executives Les Garland, Bob Pittman and Robin Zorn, and a gaggle of musicians: Thomas Dolby, Mike Reno, Todd Rundgren, and dozens of others. The book not only pulls the curtains back on the upstart video channel but reveals what was happening industrywide in the 1980s.
These are both beautifully executed books and should be on the reading list of rock history fans.