I’ve had two truly lasting and fulfilling passions in my life that have deeply affected me; Hip-Hop and Comedy. From the 80s through to today, I’ve listened to as much stand-up as I have Hip-Hop and Rap and as youd expect, samples, scratches and sound-bites in Hip-Hop led me to discover the talents of people like Redd Foxx, Richard Pryor, Robin Harris, Paul Mooney and older names like Garrett Morris and La Wanda Page. Subconsciously, people like Hicks and Kinison, Robert Klein, Cosby and Seinfeld, Eddie Murphy and more recently Chris Rock, Patrice O’Neal and Lewis Black have also had a lasting effect on the way I’ve looked at the world and treated the people around me, but more than any other im a huge George Carlin fan, and to my knowledge, there has been no other comedian in my life-time that did what he did, and crafted his comedy in such an enduring way.
As the second season of FX show ‘Louie’ came to an end this week, and as its Louies 44th birthday this coming Monday, I simply wanted to post a clip that features Louie CK [IMO, the sharpest comedy writer/ comedian of my generation] speaking about the importance and the influence George Carlin had on him and his career. This is a touching tribute from March 24 last year. If you havent seen Louies show on FX, get yer act together.
No other stand-up worked so hard to spread the truth to the people of the world by simply being humorous, telling jokes and doing ‘bits’. Personally, George Carlin was the finest comedian of my time to address socio and counter-cultural issues as well as making political comment, fundamentally by ramming it down the audiences throats with his feverish and intense delivery. I liked him because he was a force that didnt care if you didnt like him, he simply wanted people to wake-up to the world around them. There was something distinguished yet down to earth about him, something very special about the way the Roman Catholic born New Yorker grabbed hold of the repressed truth within people, and how he shook that shit out of them to make them laugh.
Carlin was a truly profound comic who died in 2008, he was 71 and obviously had a great run, and I happily admit to shedding more than a single tear when I learnt of his passing [I also cried when Bernie Mac died, but surprisingly never when a Rapper, DJ or Producer has passed, and I’ve been listening to Hip-Hop much longer than I’ve truly understood the science of stand-up].
Carlin did endless HBO specials and numerous albums which are ALL worth investigating. Louie is up for his second Emmy Award next week too…