39 Years of Short-Term Memory Loss: The Early Days of SNL from Someone Who Was There

39 Years of Short-Term Memory Loss: The Early Days of SNL from Someone Who Was There



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39 Years of Short-Term Memory Loss: The Early Days of SNL from Someone Who Was There by Tom Davis

39 Years of Short Term Memory Loss is a seriously funny, offbeat and irreverent memoir that chronicles the early days of Saturday Night Live and features some of its greatest personalities—Al Franken, Lorne Michaels, Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Bill Murray, Michael O'Donoghue, and Chris Farley. Written by Tom Davis, an original SNL writer and comedy partner of Al Franken, 39 Years of Short Term Memory Loss is the story of coming of age in the 60s, and a spellbinding account of the birth and rise of one of television’s most celebrated shows, Saturday Night Live. Tom Davis’ memoir is filled with wry, candid anecdotes about his days at Saturday Night Live and friendship with its stars. But it also the story of Davis’ own coming of age—escaping his conservative roots in suburban Minneapolis, traveling the world, and reveling in the hippie culture of 1960s San Francisco. The author finds the highs and lows of his own career to be an hilarious counterpoint to the meteoric rise of SNL and his friends' growing celebrity. Hysterical, lucid and wise, 39 Years of Short Term Memory Loss is a free spirited, unrepentant romp through an era of sex, drugs, and comedy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802118806
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date: 03/03/2009
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Tom Davis is widely acclaimed as the foremost writer on wildlife and sporting art and artists. He has written several books and innumerable articles about the genre. A contributor to numerous publications, he serves as Senior Editor for Sporting Classics and as Editor-at-Large of Pointing Dog Journal. Davis makes his home in Green Bay, Wisconsin, where he lives with his wife Joan, stepdaughter Sophia, and three bird dogs.

Two-time spoken word Grammy (R) award winner AL FRANKEN is the author of four previous bestsellers. A long-time comedy writer who rose to prominence as one of the original "Saturday Night Live" writers in the 1970s, Franken won five Emmy(R) Awards for his work on "SNL".

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39 Years of Short-Term Memory Loss: The Early Days of SNL from Someone Who Was There 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Rockdoc590 More than 1 year ago
MDemos' review is right on the money. There is precious little about the early days of SNL here and even less about the rampant drug culture there, probably at Lorne Micheals' request. There is little about what he felt about life and nothing about his marriage or family. It is always the relentless search for the next mind numbing or altering experience culminating with heroin, coke and Jerry Garcia. He is an addict, emotionally vacant, fortunate to be in a lucky place at the right time for an interesting ride. He didn't learn anything. There is little redeeming or interesting about any of this. Reading it made me certain I never wanted to meet or talk to Tom Davis. He and this book are a waste.
mdemos More than 1 year ago
Tom Davis, the author of this book, has taken A LOT of drugs. It's a fact he admits unabashedly, and one that is probably directly responsible (at least partly) for this disjointed mess of a book. One gets the distinct impression he titled it the way he did, so that he would always have an "out" for those that complain about the jumbled narrative of the book. ("Hey, I warned about the potential for trouble right on the cover....") Oh, and there's another problem with the title. It's VERY misleading. Specifically the subtitle, "The Early Days of SNL from Someone Who Was There". Because I'm a HUGE fan of SNL (especially the early years), that alone was a big reason I snapped this title up almost as soon as it became available. And boy, was I disappointed! Don't get me wrong, by the end of the book Davis does relate a number of stories about his time as a writer (and sometimes performer) on the show, but nowhere near what I would have expected based on the title reference. But that "problem" pales in comparison to the REAL problem that is this book's narrative. Simply put, it's ALL over the place. Tom Davis, a man who makes his living as a writer, has a nasty habit of jumping from one story to the next, and from the past to the present (and back again), without much explanation (or segue) in between. The end result is that the reader is constantly left in a state of confusion regarding time and place, as we are bounced from one anecdote to the next. That's not to say there's absolutely nothing good about the book. There are some interesting "behind the scenes" stories about the show, various personalities (both famous, and not), and the events surrounding Davis's VERY atypical life. Unfortunately though, there's not enough of the "good", to outweigh the "bad". End result: I can only recommend this book to extreme diehards of (early) Saturday Night Live, and possibly also to devout "Deadheads" (Tom Davis was a friend of Jerry Garcia, and relates a number of stories of times spent with him, and Davis's favorite band, The Grateful Dead). Otherwise, just avoid it.......
mmy4est More than 1 year ago
If this book had been billed properly, it would have said that it was about Tom Davis' early years on drugs. He recounts many anecdotes starring Jerry Garcia, Al Franken, Timothy Leary, Lorne Michaels and more, but they are disjointed and not in any type of order. If the book had been edited (at all) perhaps it would have been readable. One minute he's telling about Lorne in 1977, the next paragraph has us in the 80's with Jerry Garcia. I remember the beginnings of Saturday Night Live. I never did LSD. Mr. Davis' swiss-cheese brain is incapable of linear thought and adequate story-telling. It's a shame, really. I would have loved to read the book that is advertised on the cover.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The title leads you to believe that he's going to give you SNL memories, but that doesn't happen. Apparently all the drugs that he did truly affected his writing
JW91 More than 1 year ago
I really wasn't sure what to expect when I bought this book. I knew that Tom Davis was involved with some pretty cool people, and was curious to hear about the times with them. Well, I was not disappointed. Without a shred of pretentiousness like so many other showbiz people books, you hear from a guy who was a down to earth person who knew how to have a good time. Finally a book from someone who was actually hanging out with all of these people, not just another career person or hanger on. If you like SNL, The Grateful Dead, or hearing about what it was like to make it as a comedian back in the 70's, this is a great book. Also, if you're into this kind of stuff, you'll like the free-flow of stories that jumps from one icon friend to the next, and one "experience" to another. Felt like he was holding back a bit with the stories though, maybe another book will go a bit deeper. More, more!
Catdude More than 1 year ago
Yeah, alot of people may have forgrtten Tom Davis but if you remember when Saturday Night Live first started, then this is a must read. Not only does this show a side of Tom people never knew but, it also tells more about SNLs' early days that you probably never knew. His responsibility for getting the Grateful Dead on SNL is entertaining. Definately a good gift for any SNL fan.