Live from New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live, written by James Andrew Miller & Tom Shales is an oral history provided mostly by former writers, producers, hosts and cast members of Saturday Night Live, with one notable exclusion of Eddie Murphy.
The book that I read was published in 2002, and therefore accounts provided only went up to 2002, however I understand there is another version that was published just prior to the 40th anniversary in 2015 (side-note, if you haven’t read about 40th reunion show after-party, you should definitely do some Googling).
I really enjoyed this book, as I am a huge pop culture nerd, but also a fan of the show and the cast members it has launched into stardom.
The accounts seemed honest, some naming the worst host that they worked with or saying what they really thought about Lorne Michaels (spoiler alert: he’s a bit of a douche bag). The stories of the drug use by the first cast including John Belushi, Dan Akroyd, Gilda Radnor but definitely not Jane Curtin to be incredibly interesting.
I recommend that anyone who loves SNL read this, as it is interesting and informative. I also really like the way that it was a collaborative effort from many people who worked there.
“I always thought that if comedy is going to confuse anybody, by rights it should be the stupider people. You shouldn’t be punished for knowing more”