They say time flies and I have to say that it really does. I agree with the statement for a number of reasons and today its more based on the fact that I cannot believe how twenty years have gone by since the music world lost the presence of the mighty Eric Carr who passed away on this day in 1991. As most Hard Rock and Metal fans know, Eric Carr (born Paul Caravello) was the second drummer in the band KISS and had replaced their founding member Peter Criss in 1980. By the time 1980 had come around I was already a KISS fan for a number of years and I had just started to find an interest in the drums myself. Peter was an initial inspiration but Eric Carr became the one who I was most taken with for some reason. I guess it was because he was bringing something new and different and perhaps even a little more exciting to the group that I publicly declared as my favorite of them all.
As a member of KISS Eric recorded “Music From The Elder”, “Killers”, “Creatures Of The Night”, “Lick It Up”, “Animalize”, “Asylum”, “Hot In The Shade” and “Revenge” (one song). He’s also been featured in a large amount of the bands videos from these albums and on the bands extensive compilation packages. If you own any of these releases you will have to agree that KISS had some new life breathed into them when Eric sat on the drum throne. There was just “a way” about him that everyone seemed to love. His masked man role in KISS was The Fox even though he was originally supposed to be The Hawk. Trust me folks The Fox worked which you will agree with me on if you ever see photos of the proposed Hawk costume. Yikes.
Here’s a great shot of Eric sans the Fox makeup of course leaning over his massive kit during the “Asylum” tour if memory serves me correctly. I’ll admit that when it came to enjoying his presence in the band, half of it was wondering what kind of cool drum set he was going to showcase and what kind of slamming they would get during the show. Well, at least for me this was the case. I was so affected by his creations in terms of kits that I became a Ludwig drummer myself and even built a set up of many different components. Bands did that to a lot of people I knew back in the day.
Sadly Eric would fall ill in early 1991 and be diagnosed as having the very rare heart cancer. While it had seemed he would eventually recover from this after operations he would suffer an aneurysm that would lead to a brain hemorrhage and his eventual death at aged 41. Before he died he would appear in the KISS video for “God Gave Rock and Roll To You”. Strangely enough, the music world would also lose the great Freddie Mercury from Queen on the same day. What a terrible day huh. Looking back I have to say that I still miss him and sometimes wonder just what else he might have delivered to the fans had he recovered or never gotten ill in the first place. A big “What If” case scenario like we find in the comic books. Too bad that sort of thing is just a fantasy and we are left with the music he left us with and the empty space. Since I’ve been offering up memorial thoughts in the PiercingMetal blog when we lose someone of note, I just felt like making some kind of tribute for him here based on how important he was to so very many people. I still miss him to this very day because of how much he influenced me. I guess I will be playing those KISS albums and of course some Queen to honor Freddie today as well. I think you readers should do some of the same so get cracking.
Eric Carr Official Website HERE.
Learn more about Eric Carr the man and musician via his Wikipedia entry HERE.