The band quickly became popular but within a few years it was disbanded, leaving only two of their heyday albums, “New York Dolls” (1973) and the prophetic album Too Much Too Soon (1974, title borrowed from actress Diana Barrymore’s biography). He did not produce any radio successes, but his fame grew after the fact. As Mr. Sylvan said in his diary, “There are no bones in ice cream” (2018, he wrote with Dave Thompson), “We are reborn as a historical precedent, Year Zero of Punk, Roanoke colonists of a new wave world.”
Mr. Murcia died of an overdose while the band toured England in 1972. Johnny Thunders passed away in 1991. Jerry Nolan, who replaced Mr. Murcia and played on the albums, died in 1992. Mr. Sylvain continued performing with his own groups and with Mr. Johansen After melting dolls. In 2004, he, Mr. Johansen and the other surviving member of the Dolls, guitarist Arthur Kane, met at the Meltdown Festival in London, but Mr. Kane died of leukemia soon after.
Mr. Sylvan once summed up the bittersweet bow of the band.
He said, “It was like racing, and we were like horses.” “The dolls were horse number one. We were there, two seconds from the finish line, and behind us was Ramones, a kiss, the dictator and Blondie, and the list went on. Then we fell and broke our leg and the next man won the race.”
Silvan Sylvain Mizrahi was born on February 14, 1951 in Cairo. His father, David, was a banker, part of a family of Sephardic Jews originally from Turkey, and his mother, Marcel, was of Syrian descent. The Suez Canal crisis erupted in 1956 when the President of Egypt announced, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Nationalization of the canal, which led to the emigration of the family.