Growing up on 90's comedy

One of the coolest things to do as a kid growing up in the early 90's was to listen to comedy albums, especially R-rated comedians, with friends. It was rebellious. Our parents didn't know that we were listening to Denis Leary call himself an asshole.

I mean, come on, who were The Jerky Boys? We didn't care. Their prank phone calls and skits were legendary amongst us middle school boys. It inspired us to make our own prank phone calls, which in retrospect was a horrible idea. I spent many days grounded in my room after my parents found out when I could have been playing outside in the beautiful weather. What they didn't know was I just spent that time listening to more comedy gold. Haha, parents think they have it all figured out.

Adam Sandler was my first real exposure to comedy. His album 'They're All Gonna Laugh at You!' blew me away. I remember hating The Thanksgiving Song, but loving the Fatty McGee skit. There was always something about his different voices and mood swings that jumped out and reeled me in. Nowadays, he's become a huge star, if you count making unwatchable movie garbage like Jack and Jill. Oh, but I still remember Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore...genius.

One day, an older kid, I think in high school, would laugh at us for listening to Adam Sandler. 'That's not a real comedian,' he said. 'Here, take these, and thank me later,' he said. He gave me three albums: one each for Richard Pryor, Bill Hicks, and Sam Kinison. I had no experience with relationships (maybe there were a few failed attempts at holding hands) or marriage, but damn...Kinison was like no other person I had ever heard of before, let alone a comedian. I remember crying after I heard he had died in 1992. That was years after his death!!! At least it wasn't his ex-wife that got him...terrible joke, I know. I should not attempt to do comedy.

Then, in 1996, Chris Rock came out with an HBO special called Bring the Pain. Howard Stern calls this the best comedy routine ever. I agree. It has not been topped since, in my opinion.

I remain a comedy fan to this day, but my interest, until recently, has waned in the last fifteen years. Feelings of nostalgia from all the times enjoyed with friends, listening to those comedic geniuses work their magic has poured through me.

I am fortunate to be getting back into comedy. The credit goes to one of my dearest friends, Zachary Livingston. He works the mic all across New England and started Mass Laughs Comedy (check out his website at - you know you want to, he's got to be funny to come up with a clever website like that, right?). He has produced and hosted many smaller comedy shows at The Elevens in Northampton, MA and on Saturday, July 19th, he will be producing a show that features a well-known comedian from New York called Ted Alexandro.

After watching some of Ted's YouTube videos and Comedy Central specials, I am extremely excited to watch him rock the mic. My favorite blurb from his Wikipedia page is that he has opened for Chuck Berry.

Mike Lemme from Chicopee, MA will open. I have had the pleasure of seeing Mike perform on numerous occasions. He is a very funny guy and will be a great part of the evening.

The show is at the Academy of Music in Northampton, MA. Doors open at 7:00PM and the show will start at 8:00PM. Come on out for some great fun and support these funny guys!

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