Mikal Gilmore (born in Portland, Oregon on February 9, 1951) is an American writer and music journalist.
In the 1970s Gilmore began writing music articles and criticism for Rolling Stone magazine. In 1999, Gilmore's Night Beat: A Shadow History of Rock and Roll was published by Anchor. In July 2009 Gilmore released another book, Stories Done: Writings on the 1960s and its Discontents. It was published by Free Press.
Gilmore was born to Frank and Bessie Gilmore. His brother Gary Gilmore (December 4, 1940 – January 17, 1977) was an American criminal who gained international attention for demanding the implementation of his death sentence for two murders he committed in Utah. After the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a new series of death penalty statutes in the 1976 decision Gregg v. Georgia, he became the first person in almost ten years to be executed in the United States.
In 1977. Mikal Gilmore wrote a memoir in 1994 titled Shot in the Heart, detailing his relationship with Gary and their often troubled family, starting with the original Mormon settlers and continuing through to Gary's execution and its aftermath. Shot in the Heart received positive reviews, including a comment by New York Times critic Michiko Kakutani calling the book "[r]emarkable, astonishing... Shot in the Heart reads like a combination of Brothers Karamazov and a series of Johnny Cash ballads... chilling, heartbreaking, and alarming." In 1994 Shot in the Heart won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.
In 2001, Shot in the Heart became an HBO film starring Giovanni Ribisi as Mikal, Elias Koteas as Gary, Sam Shepard as the brothers' looming father and Lee Tergesen as Frank Gilmore, Jr. The 1977 punk rock single "Gary Gilmore's Eyes" by the band The Adverts was used in the soundtrack of the movie. The song is written from "the point of view of a hospital patient who has received the eyes of Gary Gilmore in a transplant."
The soundtrack rises from abstract notes of angst and irresolution into the anthemic punk of the Adverts' "Gary Gilmore's Eyes," a pounding symbol of the ...
... to the Adverts taking the point of view of a hospital patient who has received the eyes of Gary Gilmore in a transplant; Gilmore, the infamous killer executed by a Utah firing squad, had said he'd donate his eyes to science as they'd probably be the only body part usable.