Working through the several Harlan Ellison titles I picked up earlier from the library.
"Spider Kiss" is the story of the manager of an Elvis/Jerry Lee Lewis type singer who becomes hugely famous in 1961. The book's perspective on fame is pretty dark; what struck me is how universal the theme of fame & corruption/darkening of the soul is. Certainly writers of today's celebrity scene have no shortage of material to work with, but Ellison has summed much of it up very well, and had done so in 1961.
On the other hand, I didn't quite get the author's claim about just how evil and depraved his star's excesses were...in today's day and age (and probably from the 70's on), it became almost expected for rock stars to be drugged out, misbehaving, overspending, womanizers (or man-izers).
Power-hungry, single-minded machiavellian meglomaniacal ambition? Also kind of expected for success in Hollywood/entertainment, no matter what the carefully cultivated exterior image may be.
Regardless, a quick and entertaining read.
I'm reading "Shatterday", a collection of short stories by Ellison. About 100 pages into it now, ~230 to go. Will post on that at some point later this week, if I finish it...