|Height:||171 cm (5' 8'')|
|Birth Day:||July 12, 1950|
|Death Date:||Nov 24, 1991 (age 41)|
|Birth Place:||Brooklyn, United States|
American musician best known as one of the drummers for the glam rock band KISS. He replaced Peter Criss, the original drummer for the band.
As per our current Database, Eric Carr died on Nov 24, 1991 (age 41).
|Height||Weight||Hair Colour||Eye Colour||Blood Type||Tattoo(s)|
|171 cm (5' 8'')||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
He attended the High School of Art and Design in New York City. He played with a lot of local groups, including The Cellarmen.
Born as Paul Charles Caravello on July 12, 1950, to Albert and Connie Caravello, Carr was of Italian descent. He grew up in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn in New York City. Because his father worked most of the time, Carr didn't see that much of him, and "never went to a baseball game or that kind of stuff" with his father. He spent a lot of time alone in his room, playing with toy soldiers and toy monsters.
While still in high school, Caravello began playing with a string of bands mostly performing covers of Top 40 songs. As he described it later, "Top-40 in those days was everything – funk, ballads, rock, country, and everything. It was a great time for radio." His first band, The Cellarmen, was formed in 1965 by him and several of his friends. They started playing local clubs in Brooklyn and Queens. Only a handful of recordings were released on the Jody Records label, a small Brooklyn recording studio. Caravello then joined a band called "Things That Go Bump in the Night" and later "Smack", the latter of which consisted mostly of members from The Cellarmen, who disbanded in 1968.
Caravello graduated from high school in 1967. At around that time, riots started to occur in New York City, followed by white flight that started to make his neighborhood more predominantly African-American. Caravello stated that this was not a real concern to him, because "I never had any problems with anybody, I had black friends, and I never grew up thinking in those kinds of terms.".
In 1970, Caravello joined the band Salt & Pepper, which started as a cover band playing music from multiple genres; the band was named that because half of the members were black and half were white. In 1973 the band changed their name to Creation, now performing disco music.
Tragedy struck in 1974 when a fire broke out during a discothèque gig at Gulliver's nightclub in Port Chester, New York, killing dozens of people including the band's keyboardist and lead singer. Caravello escaped and was credited with saving another person, one of the band's female singers. It was determined that the fire had been started by a thief in an adjacent building hoping to cover his tracks.
The band continued on, sometimes under the name, "Bionic Boogie". They held a benefit to replace their ruined equipment. Carr would go on with the band until 1979. They enjoyed some success, performing as an opening act for established names such as Stevie Wonder and Nina Simone. The band broke up in late 1979. He later described the band as "like my family basically for nine years."
In December 1979, Caravello successfully auditioned for a four-piece rock 'n' roll cover band called Flasher. After three weeks of rehearsals, they started playing at clubs. At this point he had become discouraged about his musical future after so many years trying to make it without a break, and considered settling down with a non-musical career. "...we were making real (lousy) money – something like $10, $7 a night, whatever it was it was. Really, really terrible. Just by contrast, I used to make $15 a night when I was like 16 years old, and here I am almost 30 years old, and I'm making like $7 a night! So I wasn't doing better, obviously – I was going in reverse, you know!
Flasher played the club circuit in New York City and Long Island for several months, before their keyboard player, Paul Turino quit; they then continued as a power trio, with the three sharing vocal duties. They played songs by Joe Jackson, Van Halen, Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix, among others." Bookings diminished, and Caravello handed in his resignation in May 1980. At that point, he considered quitting music, having reached the age of 30 without any real success. Shortly afterwards, he had a chance meeting with Turino in a club in Queens; Turino told Caravello about Peter Criss' departure from Kiss, and urged Caravello to audition to become Kiss' drummer.
Carr was introduced to the public on an episode of the syndicated television youth show Kids Are People Too! filmed in late July 1980 and aired in September 1980. His first public performance was with the band in New York City's Palladium on July 25, 1980. His parents, warned to not tell anyone their son was in Kiss (to maintain the mystique that no one knew what the new member looked like without make up), attended the concert, and were recognized by a friend who worked with Carr at a repair shop – and had no idea the new Kiss member behind the kit was his former coworker. "'What are you doing here?'", Carr's father, Albert Caravello, related in the Tale of the Fox DVD, "'You like Kiss?' I said, "Yeah!'" Carr also, immediately after joining Kiss, still did a few stove repair jobs. For Christmas in 1980, the Kiss organization bought Carr a Porsche—so their new drummer would ride around in appropriate rock star-style. The car broke down often, and caused Carr quite a bit of grief.
Carr was a powerful hard-hitting drummer and one of the first drummers to adopt the classic 1980s snare drum sound: a highly reverberated and low-tuned sound. In his 1980 resume sent to Kiss, Carr stated that his drumming style ranged from heavy metal and hard rock to pop and new wave claiming that "I can adapt to most situations easily." He listed drummers John Bonham, Keith Moon and Lenny White as influences.
After Caravello passed the audition, time was short but the band had some trouble coming up with a character persona and a stage name for him before his debut concert. "We never actually told him he was in the band," stated Paul Stanley on USA Network's Night Flight program in 1983, "We just said: "In two weeks we're playing.'"
His persona remained consistent for three years until the band's well-publicized removal of their stage makeup in September 1983, live on MTV. The drastic move came after declining album sales and a poorly attended US tour. Carr thought the band was coming to an end, but Kiss slowly turned their career descent into a rebound, and the band thrived. Carr earned a reputation amongst fans for being very friendly and approachable. He answered more mail than other band members, and often added messages to his autographs. Despite being a replacement of an original member, his popularity soared among fans based on his personality and percussion skills.
Carr's interest in double bass drumming came from his admiration of Ginger Baker and John Bonham, once telling 16 magazine, "I just loved the way John Bonham played drums". Carr also had a love of all types of music; songwriter Adam Mitchell once described Carr as knowing a lot about folk, R&B and other non-rock styles. In a 1983 interview, Carr told USA Network interviewer Al Bandero that he listened to "a lot" of Neil Young, and liked many different types of music. Simmons has stated that Carr's harder drumming style pushed Kiss into becoming a heavier band than it had been when jazz-inspired Criss was the band's drummer.
In 1989, he recorded a demo with Kiss lead guitarist Bruce Kulick. Carr wrote the music, played bass and drums, while Kulick played guitar. As Carr was not a proficient lyricist, he presented the demo to Simmons with the words to Marvin Gaye's 1965 classic "Ain't That Peculiar". Simmons wrote new lyrics, which Carr recorded for the subsequent Hot in the Shade release. The song was released as "Little Caesar". He performed the song a few times, but it wasn't performed beyond the first month of the tour. Carr's last live performance with Kiss was November 9, 1990 in New York City, at Madison Square Garden.
While sitting outside the room used for the audition, Caravello watched the three members of Kiss — Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons and Stanley — walk by to enter the room. He was one of the few people outside of the band's circle of friends, family and music business partners, to see Kiss without make-up. "Paul, I knew right away", he told a fanzine in 1990. "The others I wasn't sure about."
Caravello was the last drummer to audition for the band and asked Stanley, Simmons and Frehley to autograph the list of Kiss songs he was to play with the band, in case he never saw them again. "But I knew I had it", he told a fanzine in 1990. According to Caravello, his audition was videotaped. He was also immediately comfortable, feeling the songs he had to play "...were a snap." He knew the arrangements better than the band did, from learning the recorded versions off Kiss' albums. "They had been on tour, and changed little things around," he said. He was not impressed with Kiss' performance at the audition. "They were awful!" he emphasized, "I had to remind them, "'No, I sing this harmony, you sing that one', stuff like that. It was great! Right away we were working together. I know it impressed them."
Carr's last recording with Kiss was for the song "God Gave Rock 'N' Roll to You II", which featured him on backing vocals. The last time Carr worked with Kiss was in July 1991 when Kiss filmed the video for "God Gave Rock 'N Roll to You" with Carr playing drums. Carr's last public appearance with the band was at the MTV Video Music Awards in September 1991.
In February 1991, Carr began feeling ill. Medical tests initially revealed what appeared to be manageable health issues. However, further tests determined that he had heart cancer. In April 1991, Carr underwent a series of surgeries to remove tumors in his right atrium and lungs in an effort to restore heart function and prevent the cancer's growth. Soon after Carr's diagnosis, Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons replaced him with session drummer Eric Singer to commence new recordings for the band's upcoming album Revenge. After recovering from the multiple surgeries, Carr pressed Stanley and Simmons to let him back in the band. Stanley and Simmons refused; both have stated they repeatedly told Carr to focus on his cancer treatments and they would allow him to return to Kiss once he regained his health. By mid-1991, the band was preparing to shoot the music video for their upcoming single "God Gave Rock and Roll to You". Despite his poor health, Carr asked Stanley and Simmons to allow him to be in the video. They ultimately agreed.
Carr flew to Los Angeles in July 1991. By that point, he had lost his hair due to chemotherapy treatments and was wearing a wig. After the video shoot, Carr flew back to New York to continue cancer treatments; his health had deteriorated to the point where he was unable to play drums for the recording sessions for Revenge. Carr's replacement, Eric Singer, played on the album's tracks.
Carr's last public appearance with Kiss was at the MTV Video Music Awards in September 1991. Not long afterwards, he suffered an aneurysm and was rushed to the hospital. Several days later, he suffered a brain hemorrhage and never regained consciousness. On November 24, 1991, Carr died at the age of 41. He died on the same day as Freddie Mercury, the lead singer of the British rock band Queen, whose death attracted more media attention. Carr had also been in a nearly four-year relationship with future model/actress Carrie Stevens at the time of his death.
A further tribute was produced in 1992 called Eric Carr: The Memorial Tribute. It was first broadcast live on 88.1 FM / WCWP, where Carr had been interviewed three years earlier while doing press for the Hot in the Shade album. Running for approximately three hours, the tribute featured a re-broadcast of the interview, interspersed with biographical information and details of Carr's extracurricular projects, along with all the officially released songs Carr had written or cowritten. Though broadcast just once, Eric Carr: The Memorial Tribute was released several years later (seemingly in an unofficial capacity) as a two-tape box set, designed to resemble the Kiss solo albums. It featured a newly commissioned painting of Carr in his fox makeup, patterned after the rarely seen original by Eraldo Carugati (the artist who did the paintings for the original four Kiss solo album covers, plus one of Carr that was never officially released).
Former Kiss guitarist Bruce Kulick, along with Carr's family, released Carr's first and only solo album in 1999, titled Rockology, which featured many demos that Kulick and Carr worked on together (along with songwriter and friend Adam Mitchell). The CD features several songs with Carr on lead vocals as well as on bass guitar, along with Kulick on guitars and Mitchell assisting Carr with many of the background vocals. This album includes "Somebody's Waiting" and "Tiara", a song that he originally wrote for his planned children's cartoon show called Rockheads, a rock band parody featuring four characters (Slider, Clive, Scruffy and Punky) with different characteristics and personalities. Carr is a relative of skater Perry F. Caravello, star of the cult film classic Windy City Heat.
In July 2005, Carr was voted the tenth best drummer of all time by Planet Radio Rock. No other member of Kiss was given the distinction of making the top ten in the categories of vocalist, bassist or guitarist. Carr was one of only two American drummers to make the list, with all others being either British or Canadian.
Carr's family announced in 2006 that they would release material written and recorded by Carr between 1980 and 1991, including the following songs:
Though stated by Carr's family that the recordings would be released in 2006, they remain unreleased as of 2020. Some of the songs were released on the 2011 album, Unfinished Business, while others wound up on Rockology.
There is a hidden "easter egg" in the 2007 Kissology II DVD collection (on disc three at the end of the production credits) showing a family videotape made of Carr, on his hospital bed, speaking into the camera thanking his fans for their cards, letters, and concern about his health. Dressed in white, Carr then exits the bed, and begins walking away only to return and moon the camera in rock n' roll style.
On March 21, 2011, a book that explored Carr's entire life and musical career was released, titled The Eric Carr Story.
On August 13, 2011, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Carr's death, a tribute concert was held in Atlanta, Georgia called Night of the Fox: The Eric Carr Tribute Concert. The main act, going under the name Little Caesar, played a 90-minute set of songs related to Carr. Made up mostly Kiss songs from Carr's time in the band, the show also featured a song from Rockology ("Eyes of Love") plus songs written or co-written by Carr but recorded by other artists, such as "Don't Leave Me Lonely", a song recorded by Bryan Adams which was written by Carr for inclusion on Creatures of the Night album, but was rejected. Also, a tribute album featuring never released songs and interviews called Unfinished Business was released by his family. The album featured members and former members of Kiss, Twisted Sister, Seether, ZO2, Europe. The album was released on November 8, 2011.
In his 2014 memoirs Face the Music: A Life Exposed, Kiss frontman Paul Stanley described Carr as a kind and talented, but troubled soul. Carr allegedly fixated on the fact that he was neither going to be a founding member of Kiss, nor the band's first drummer. After having just met drummer Eric Singer and remaining insecure despite being in good standing with Kiss, Carr made the prescient claim that Singer was going to replace him as the new drummer in the band, which ultimately did occur in 1992 (after Carr's death). For long periods, he would not even talk to Stanley. In his book, Stanley also recalls several memorable Carr episodes, including one in which he went out with a female photographer who later took nude photos of him in a bathtub holding a glass of champagne, claiming that the photographer had promised not to publish them (the photos were soon publicized in the journal with which the photographer was associated).
Currently, Eric Carr is 72 years, 4 months and 18 days old. Eric Carr will celebrate 73rd birthday on a Wednesday 12th of July 2023.
Find out about Eric Carr birthday activities in timeline view here.