it's no secret that i have a huge crush on zach galafianakis. i could watch between two ferns on a loop for hours. so, i was watching his live at the purple onion on the netflix and began thinking back on old comedy albums i used to listen to as a kid. as i remember it, and perhaps my memory is a little shady, eddie murphy's delirious was the first full length comedy video i ever saw. it was hilarious. i loved it and it changed comedy for me forever. but all this got me to thinking about the albums i loved listening to as a kid.
first of all, i must credit my father (and my mother for allowing it) for letting us watch and listen to comedy that was totally inappropriate for children. i still remember sitting at the bottom of my parents bed watching SNL on their crappy black and white tv and laughing until i was crying, not because i totally got the humor, but because i knew it was funny. george carlin, richard pryor and, of course, steve martin were huge highlights of my early snl experience. it also helped that we watched it as a family, and listening to my father laugh was like manna from heaven. (let it be noted that he also took me alone with him to see the shining, which scared the crap out of me. i was 12.)
some of my favorite holiday and birthday memories are from comedy albums that he would buy us as kids. we would all sit in the family room and play them over and over, laughing until we pee'd ourselves. a few years ago i was given a gift of bob newhart's book, i shouldn't be doing this and a cd of his comedy recordings. it was brilliant. again, i listened to it over and over and now i have no idea where it is.
i miss the days of listening to comedy, sitting with friends or family and just busting a gut over how funny a comedian is. i would rather burn my finger prints off than go to a comedy show, but i would give up what is left of my liver to listen again to the likes of let's get small or live on the sunset strip.