Jim Carroll: People Who Died

Music New York City News Poetry Transgressive Tributes


Jim Carroll, Basketball Diaries author, poet and one-hit-wonder punk singer, has died. He was 60. His hit single was "People Who Died":

Teddy sniffing glue, he was 12 years old
Fell from the roof on East Two-nine
Cathy was 11 when she pulled the plug
On 26 reds and a bottle of wine
Bobby got leukemia, 14 years old
He looked like 65 when he died
He was a friend of mine


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


G-berg and Georgie let their gimmicks go rotten
So they died of hepatitis in upper Manhattan
Sly in Vietnam took a bullet in the head
Bobby OD'd on Drano on the night that he was wed
They were two more friends of mine
Two more friends that died


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


Mary took a dry dive from a hotel room
Bobby hung himself from a cell in the tombs
Judy jumped in front of a subway train
Eddie got slit in the jugular vein
And Eddie, I miss you more than all the others
And I salute you brother


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


Herbie pushed Tony from the Boys' Club roof
Tony thought that his rage was just some goof
But Herbie sure gave Tony some bitchen proof
"Hey," Herbie said, "Tony, can you fly?"
But Tony couldn't fly, Tony died


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


Brian got busted on a narco rap
He beat the rap by rattin' on some bikers
He said, "Hey, I know it's dangerous, but it sure beats Riker's"
But the next day he got offed by the very same bikers


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


Teddy sniffing glue, he was 12 years old
Fell from the roof on East Two-nine
Cathy was 11 when she pulled the plug
On 26 reds and a bottle of wine
Bobby got leukemia, 14 years old
He looked like 65 when he died
He was a friend of mine


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


G-berg and Georgie let their gimmicks go rotten
So they died of hepatitis in upper Manhattan
Sly in Vietnam took a bullet in the head
Bobby OD'd on Drano on the night that he was wed
They were two more friends of mine
Two more friends that died


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


Mary took a dry dive from a hotel room
Bobby hung himself from a cell in the tombs
Judy jumped in front of a subway train
Eddie got slit in the jugular vein
And Eddie, I miss you more than all the others
And I salute you brother


Those are people who died, died
They were all my friends, and they died


4 Responses to "Jim Carroll: People Who Died"

by dlt on

Just last night I was at Border's looking for Carroll's Petting Zoo. Was he still working on it?

A half dozen years ago I swamped Carroll's office(?) w/ a bunch of my zygotes, music and paper. His female assistant sent me back a confused, peeved letter. I was just trying to make contact w/ the giant.

Carroll and Keith Richards performing People Who Died. The internet must have it.

by TKG on

Too sad.

60 is too young.

I remember seeing Carroll perform with an acoustic guitar player at Temple Beautiful in San Francisco a few months before his album came out. It was a Rock Against Racism show and he wasn't scheduled and played only a couple songs. I was glad to see him. I'd heard tapes on a late night KSAN show before and thought they were good. I had no idea who Jim Carroll was, I liked the music.

I had no idea he was associated with Kerouac or the beats or that he'd written books. Later I read them.

Never bought his album. Did rent the DiCaprio movie.

I'd have thought he was only 57, not 60.

Again, sad, sad, sad.

by dan s on

RIP Jim.

One Flight Up
by Jim Carroll

The people upstairs are cold
the girl with the full-sized German sheperd
and the boy who sleeps with her
are rapping against the radiator
with a spoon, it sounds like.

their message must carry down
one more flight to the janitor
whose business this is.

I can hear the steam
already beginning
in the pipe beside me

and soon the pressure will carry it higher
and the entire building will be warmer,
thanks to them, to sleep in.

by Steve Plonk on

RIP Jim Carroll...Somewhere in a book box, I've got an autographed copy of THE BOOK OF NODS (1986). I met Jim in NYC in 197O during a hectic trip with some friends of mine. However, I bought his book at a bookstore around 1988. I didn't think of getting an autograph way back in 1970--too much was happening at the time... I've always regretted that I didn't keep in touch. I was suprised by Jim's death like I was suprised by Michael Jackson's sudden death. I imagine you've all heard that Patrick Swayze died from cancer... May all rest in peace. Why do such wonderful, talented folks die before their time?
God only knows...

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