The Park Avenue Desperado

By Robert Friedman Inside Sports June, 1980 I. 80 DAYS IN THE LIFE OF BOB ARUM  From his fourteenth-floor, comer suite on Park Avenue and 57th Street, Bob Arum, the man many consider the most powerful boxing promoter in the world today, has a commanding view of...

Miller’s Tale

By Jennifer Allen New York Magazine January 24, 1983 Arthur Miller is slouched in the drafty rehearsal hall on the top door of the New Amsterdam Theatre, on 42nd Street. Miller is tired to his bones. He lifts his round, black-framed glasses and rubs his eyes with his...

The Doobie Brothers—From the Top  

By John Eskow Playboy August, 1980 Looking ill at ease in their tuxedos, The Doobie Brothers strode onstage at this year’s Grammy Awards ceremony to receive a thunderous ovation and four of the little golden gramophones that signify overwhelming success in the record...

David Mamet’s Hard Sell

By Jennifer Allen New York Magazine April 9, 1984 It is three days before the Broadway opening of David Mamet’s new play, Glengarry Glen Ross, one day before the critics—“crickets,” he calls them—start to come, and there is nothing for the playwright to do but wait...

Al Pacino: Out of the Shadows

By Ron Rosenbaum Vanity Fair October 1989 “I think maybe I’ve leaned too much on the clandestine thing,” Al Pacino concedes, a bit ruefully. “It was a phase I was going through.” It’s a phase he’s not entirely out of yet, at least stylistically. Tonight, for instance,...

The Notorious Libby Holman

By Jon Bradshaw Vanity Fair March, 1985 When Libby Holman arrived in Manhattan in 1924, it was a bold and brassy town, devoted to the pleasure of pleasing itself. Prohibition—“the Great Foolishness,” as the gossip columnist Lucius Beebe called it—was in effect, but it...

Death of a Playmate

By Teresa Carpenter The Village Voice November 5, 1980 It is shortly past four in the afternoon and Hugh Hefner glides wordlessly into the library of his Playboy Mansion West. He is wearing pajamas and looking somber in green silk. The incongruous spectacle of a...

The Day the Soul Train Crashed

By Stephen Fried Philadelphia Magazine June, 1983 The Sound: A tight, simple rhythm, pulsing, throbbing. A smooth, cool guitar lightly plays a handful of notes, but just the right notes. The feel is subtle, complex; a combination of what is right about jazz, what is...

The Ghosts of Ole Miss

By Willie Morris Inside Sports May, 1980 I finally came home. It was not too late. I always had home in my blood—Mississippi—but with this final homecoming the love I had for home stunned me.  Much of it has to do with the land, its sensual textures—one’s memory...

Bruce Springsteen and the Secret World

By Fred Schruers Rolling Stone February 5, 1981 Bruce Springsteen, in the abstract, is just the kind of guy my little New Jersey hometown schooled me to despise. Born seventy-seven days apart, raised maybe fifty miles apart, this beatified greaser and I grew up...

The Passions of Mario Cuomo

By Ron Rosenbaum Manhattan Inc. September, 1985 Who is that tall, spectral figure haunting the gloomy halls of the state capitol building today? Who is that silver-haired, patrician wraith with the lines of a shattered past engraved on his face? Could it be—yes—it’s...

… Thomas Pynchon on the Run …

By Helen Dudar Writers Bloc April 1984 Picture this: your dinner guest is Thomas Pynchon, the writer much of scholarly America considers our best living novelist. He is also a tantalizingly shadowy figure; a generation of fervent readers has fantasized meeting him,...