Jim Carroll, 1949-2009


Jim Carroll — prototypical NYC punk-rocker, Basketball Diaries scribe, and CBGB poet laureate — died of a heart attack Friday night. He was 60. Lots of intense eulogies will follow in the days to come: He’s an excellent jumping-off point for an “Old New York City vs. New New York City” screed, the danger and grit and volatility we’ve lost, and how much we should miss it. (No question Carroll is irreplaceable, and if this news gives you the powerful urge to hear a hot-shit live band blaze through “People Who Died,” the Drive-By Truckers are your ticket.) But the first last word here should come from Jim himself: It’ll hit hard right about now, but “8 Fragments for Kurt Cobain” is the way to go. Closing statement: “That is always the cost/As Frank said/Of a young artist’s remorseless passion/Which starts out as a kiss/And follows like a curse.” R.I.P.