Love All the People: The Essential Bill Hicks

Love All the People: The Essential Bill Hicks

Paperback(Revised Edition)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781593762018
Publisher: Soft Skull Press, Inc.
Publication date: 09/01/2008
Edition description: Revised Edition
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 562,667
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.70(h) x 1.20(d)

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Love All the People: The Essential Bill Hicks 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Tim_McGinnis More than 1 year ago
Bill Hicks was, and is, one of this country's most original, thought provoking, and controversial comedians/performance artists. And yet, there are so many people who have no idea who the man was. As we near the 15th anniversary of Hicks' premature death at the incredibly young age of 32, there has been a resurgence of Hicks' work being discussed and shown. This is in no small part due to David Letterman's very recent devotion of essentially an entire show to the man, with Hicks' mother as his guest, and Letterman showing an excised routine that Hicks did on CBS's The Late Show in late 1993. While that performance did not represent the "real" performance characteristics of Bill Hicks (he was very ill at the time, and was (intending to be) on national television), it prompted Letterman to comment on how the topical nature of the routine was not stale, even at 15 years old, and that Hicks indeed was ahead of his time. With all that said, this book is a must have for the Hicks fan as well as the uninitiated. It is not for the faint of heart when it comes to the skewering of American political conservatism, organized religion, society's view of illegal substances, and any number of other topics that most all other comics avoid like the career ending plague that they could be. The book chronicles some of Hicks' early experiences as a fledgling comic (who sold out comedy clubs at the age of 14!), but spends more effort as a timeline of his journey throughout the last stages of his career. This is accomplished by the printed transcripts of several Hicks routines as he began to illuminate on any number of social issues in a comedic setting. Also included are some writings that Hicks himself produced, including some short stories and essays. I was pleasantly surprised to discover what a gifted writer Bill Hicks was. Also included is a fantastic and enlightening forward by John Lahr who was close to Hicks, especially during the period just prior to his death. The timeline also encompasses Hicks' journey of spiritual awakening and discovery, and his development of a relationship and oneness with God. Some would view Bill Hicks as some sort of Godless atheist on an attack against those who love the Lord. This was anything but the case. But one has to experience Hicks' journey through his words and reasoning to understand where the man came from, and where he ended up. I highly recommend this book. But please, take the time and effort to view Hicks at work. I mentioned earlier that Hicks was a comedian AND a performance artist. I stand by this. Bill Hicks did not fire off jokes, get some giggles, and trot off stage. Hicks viewed himself as a truth teller, a preacher. He was charismatic on stage and acted out his one man "dark poetry" in a manner that sucked the viewer in, and then delivered a blow. Sometimes the blow was subtle, but often not. To appreciate the transcripts of routines (which are, in all fairness, sometimes redundant) one needs to have a perspective on how Hicks talked, moved, acted, screamed, fought, and communed with his audience. One doesn't see that on "Late Show" appearances. These are better viewed through his HBO special and club performances which, luckily have been preserved. Buy this book. Read this book. But also study the man in action. You may not agree with his message. However, he will certainly make you think.
CliffBurns on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Bill Hicks was the greatest stand-up comedian of all time. No one else comes even close. Pryor was terrific but, compared to Hicks, his comedy was narrowcast and lacked the sheer savagery and visceral power of the Texas tornado. While Pryor was unafraid to offend, Hicks went out of his way to attack cultural icons and pillory high office. He detested hypocrisy and lashed out at the righteousness he saw pervading American power structures and religious communities.This book largely consists of transcriptions from his stage act and fans of Hicks will find it indispensable. We can HEAR his voice in every line. However, those unfamiliar with Hicks' body of work should first seek out the man's CDs and DVDs, watch and listen to him in action. Then, perhaps, you'll understand the scope of the loss we suffered when he died so young (of pancreatic cancer), never getting the chance to loose his savage wit on George Bush II, Clinton and his sexual peccadilloes and even Prez Obama, who promised so much and delivered so little.
ErixWorx on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This wonderful book is a collection of transcripts of Hicks' stand-up routines as well as interviews, letters, and more.
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