The Comedians Pdf

The Comedians

Number of page: 432
Author: Kliph Nesteroff
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
ISBN: 9780802190864
Category: History

In The Comedians, comedy historian Kliph Nesteroff brings to life a century of American comedy with real-life characters, forgotten stars, mainstream heroes and counterculture iconoclasts. Based on over two hundred original interviews and extensive archival research, Nesteroff’s groundbreaking work is a narrative exploration of the way comedians have reflected, shaped, and changed American culture over the past one hundred years.Starting with the vaudeville circuit at the turn of the last century, Nesteroff introduces the first stand-up comedian—an emcee who abandoned physical shtick for straight jokes. After the repeal of Prohibition, Mafia-run supper clubs replaced speakeasies, and mobsters replaced vaudeville impresarios as the comedian’s primary employer. In the 1950s, the late-night talk show brought stand-up to a wide public, while Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl, and Jonathan Winters attacked conformity and staged a comedy rebellion in coffeehouses. From comedy’s part in the Civil Rights movement and the social upheaval of the late 1960s, to the first comedy clubs of the 1970s and the cocaine-fueled comedy boom of the 1980s, The Comedians culminates with a new era of media-driven celebrity in the twenty-first century.

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About The Author

Kliph Nesteroff is a former stand-up comic turned writer. A longtime contributor to WFMU, writing about the history of comedy, Nesteroff’s latest project is hosting the Classic Showbiz Talk Show, a live series in Los Angeles that has welcomed comedy luminaries like Mel Brooks, Fred Willard and Laugh-In creator George Schlatter.


  • A Google UserA Google User
    The Comedians: Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy Nesterhoff, a former stand-up comic and the host of the Classic Showbiz Talk Show event series in Los Angeles, artfully charts the evolution of American comedy as an industry, from its beginnings in 1920s vaudeville to the podcasts of today. Nesterhoff deftly interleaves the biographies of renowned comics, such as Abbot and Costello, Buddy Hackett, Joan Rivers, and Chris Rock, with those of lesser
  • A Google UserA Google User
    Review: The Comedians: Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy Steve Martin titled his third album Comedy is Not Pretty. One could easily see the same sentiment used for Kliph Nesteroff’s new book on the art form. THE COMEDIANS is a thoughtful and welldocumented history. We are reminded of or, in some cases, introduced to the likes of Jack Benny, Milton Berle, Sid Caesar, Bob Hope, the Marx Brothers and the Smothers Brothers. But it is a world fans might not
  • JcambridgeJcambridge
    LibraryThing Review This was a Christmas gift to my husband, who is a true lover of comedy and all sorts of comedians. He read it in a matter of days and thoroughly enjoyed it. Based on this alone, I recommend it to anyone who is a lover of comedy and the lives of those who make so many laugh.
  • datrappertdatrappert
    LibraryThing Review This is a very well documented (dozens of pages of end notes citing sources) history of the American comedy business. Note that I said, “comedy business”. Despite its title, this isn’t really a book
  • Jane DoeJane Doe
    THE COMEDIANS: Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy A comprehensive history of American stand-up comedy, from vaudeville to Twitter. At the beginning, Nesteroff, a former stand-up comedian and host of Classic Showbiz Talk Show, makes two important
  • Rosellen BrewerRosellen Brewer
    The Comedians: Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy Nesteroff, a stand-up comedian-turned-writer, conducted 200 original interviews and extensive archival research to chronicle American comedy over the last 100 years. He combines anecdotes and gossip
  • DavidWinebergDavidWineberg
    LibraryThing Review The Dramatic, Definitive Study The difference between Kliph Nesteroff’s The Comedians and the hundreds of other collections on comedians is that this is an order of magnitude above all the rest
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