Live From New York is an oral history of Saturday Night Live. Essentially, the story is told by piecing together interviews with a large number of people. Small transition sections written by the authors tie the story together and move it along.
When I started reading the book, I began watching the first season of Saturday Night Live. Running on the treadmill, over the last two months, I have watched 20 of the 24 episodes from the first season.
Although I am not sure if it was the first time I saw SNL, I have a very strong memory of watching a skit with Nooter. It was Steve Martin and Bill Murray pointing and asking “What the hell is that…?”. This skit ran in October of 1979, more than forty years ago.
At almost 750 pages, the book is a load. I am always disappointed in myself when I don't finish a book a month, but given the events of the last two months, it is probably to be expected. I was planning to make a major dent in the book while I was traveling in March and April.
I give the book a lukewarm thumbs up. Although it gets a little repetitive, the history of the first five years of the show is fascinating. The fact that Belushi and Aykroyd owned a seedy bar in Manhattan to host after show parties is amazing!