Eric Carr: Tale of the Fox is a documentary released in the year 2000 about the drummer, Paul Charles Caravello, otherwise known as Eric Carr, the Fox, from the band, KISS. He was the replacement for Peter Criss after he left the band in May of 1980, shortly after the release of the album, “Unmasked”, which I first received from Columbia House on vinyl. This was a strange time to be into KISS. It was a weird one-two-three-four punch, all unusual styles. You had “Dynasty” in 1979, which was disco-tinged, still very hard stuff for the time, and it was a very popular record, made the top ten, multi-platinum sales, had a big hit single, and then the next year, “Unmasked” comes out, barely makes the top 40 with only a gold certification. Peter Criss leaves the band. They bring in Eric Carr. His first show was at a place called The Palladium, which I remember because when we first moved to New York City, we lived in an apartment on 14th Street and 3rd Avenue, which was right around the corner from The Palladium, it was a small-ish arena venue, about 3,000 seats, and I remember it had some gorgeous artwork on the front of the building, it was really a bye-gone era, I guess – you had Iggy Pop and Blondie and The Pretenders, and I think Judas Priest and Iron Maiden played there. It was like a punk and hardcore version of Radio City. So that was their only show in the States, and it was just a practice-run for Eric Carr and the “Unmasked” tour.
Before they settled on the “Fox” persona, or the “Fox” character, they were going to do this “Bird” thing, like a hawk or something, I’m not sure, but I’ve seen pictures of the costume and the makeup, and they are incredibly silly-looking, um, orange and yellow feathers, I guess with wings, and this unusual assymetrical-not assymetrical makeup design, like a juxtaposition of wings on the face, and then this triangular nose, orange and silver which are terrible color combinations – it lacks the uniformity of the other faces. Shortly after, they came to their senses or maybe Eric told them he was going to die of embarrassment if he had to wear this makeup; I’m not sure, but I think it was Eric Carr’s idea to go with the “Fox” makeup, which looks wonderful. As a matter of fact, I think I prefer the “Fox” makeup and design to Peter Criss’ “Cat” design. I love the design, that’s just my opinion, of course. It’s simple, and it wasn’t part of the original design of the band as it formed, but I thought it was a wonderful addition to ensemble.
Written by David Lawler
Additional Commentary by Mark Jeacoma
“Lone Fox Dancing” by Ruskin Bond
“Lone Fox Dancing” read by Regan Lawler
Audio Clips: Eric Carr drum solo 1980 in Melbourne
Eric Carr drum solo 1980 at the Palladium, New York City
“God Of Thunder” 1976, (Paul Stanley Demo)
“Tale of the Fox”, 2000, Jack Edward Sawyers
“Don’t Leave Me Lonely”, 1983 written by Bryan Adams, Jim Vallance, Eric Carr
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