UPDATE: No word on the documentary, but I did contact Southern California LDS Public Affairs and have confirmed that Bro. Kane did work as a volunteer at the Los Angeles Family History Center. I realize that news outlets have already reported that, but considering how often they get Mormon-related stories wrong, I decided to do a little reporting of my own.
Also: For recent photos of Kane, see the Web site of rock photographer Bob Gruen.
LDS Today’s news roundup for July 16 includes a link to an ap obitiuary of Arthur Kane, bassist for the newly-resurrected glam-punk band the New York Dolls, that appears on the USA Today Web site. Kane “died of complications related to leukemia” at the age of 55 not long after the New York Dolls got back together (at the prompting of Morrissey, president of England’s NYD fan club during the ’70s).
The obit hints that Kane converted to the LDS Church just over a decade ago:
“[Doll frontman David] Johansen said Kane suffered an abusive childhood, then conquered years of alcoholism.
‘Practically every trauma that could befall a person happened to Arthur. But finally 12 years ago, through spiritual studies, he was able to overcome that vicious cycle and put his life back together,’ Johansen said.
Kane had been working at the Family History Center of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Los Angeles. But he rejoined the band after British singer and Dolls fan Morrissey persuaded the group to play at London’s Meltdown Festival last month” (“New York Dolls bassist dies at 55.” Associated Press wire story. July 16, 2004).
Blabbermouth.net reports that Kane indeed was a “devout Mormon.” What’s more the site also says that Kane “was being followed around by a camera crew from the church for a documentary, ‘A New York Doll’, which detailed his recovery from alcohol and drug abuse.”
Can anyone confirm this? I’d love to hear more about the documentary — it sounds like a great story that, sadly, has come to an end much too soon.