Baker & Taylor
Describes the history of Black comedy from slavery through blackface, vaudeville, and the chitlin' circuit, to the present, interspersing commentary and criticism with interviews with Eddie Murphy, Marla Gibbs, and Chris Rock.
(Applause Books). For almost four hundred years, black Americans have been entertaining the masses through humor. Here is the only up to date book to examine this genre. This book traces the history and evolution through the 121 interviews conducted with some of the top African-American comedians in the world. Fables and myths are clarified, facts unraveled, and good times are nonstop as the makers of comedy history put that history in their own words. They not only share their appreciation of the established icons, but tip their hats to many of the unsung heroes as well. Those interviewed include: Dick Gregory, Eddie Murphy, Cedric the Entertainer, Mike Epps, Bernie Mac, Nick Cannon, Damon Wayans, Eddie Griffin, Arsenio Hall, Rudy Ray Moore, Chris Rock, Sinbad, Marla Gibbs, Thea Vidale, Robert Townsend, Timmie Rogers, Franklyn Ajaye, and John Witherspoon.
Littleton, a stand-up comedian and comedy writer, describes the history of black comedians, interspersing excerpts from interviews he did with many of them--Eddie Murphy, Robert Townsend, Marla Gibbs, Chris Rock, and Arsenio Hall, to name a few. He begins with comedy during the period of slavery up to the present, and discusses vaudeville and blackface, the "chitlin' circuit" of nightclubs, films, and television. Incorporated within the text are answers to questions from other comedians, about topics such as the KKK, joke stealing, negative aspects of stand-up, Apollo experiences, the Def Comedy Jam, audiences, and their views on other comedians like Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby. B&w photos are included. Annotation ©2007 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)