Arts & Culture

Sans Don Rickles: Judging The 40 “Greatest” Comedy Albums

Judging a greatest comedy list, because we take our comedy seriously. Read More

By / November 7, 2011
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One or two comedy albums come out a year that are truly worth talking about, but the medium has certainly fallen out of favor in the 00’s, especially with the rise of comedy podcasts becoming so popular.

Either totally ignoring that fact, or caring less about it, Spin recently put out a list of the “40 Greatest Comedy Albums of All Time,” that has merits a few thoughts and questions.

Number one being…

1.  Where the hell is Hello Dummy by Don Rickles?

Mr. Warmth’s 1968 live recording should be a top five on any comedy album list, not be totally ignored on it.

2. Stan Freberg has an album on it.  He wasn’t Jewish.

Growing up, I had a friend in Hebrew school with a dad named Stan Frieberg, and looking back, he looked a whole lot like the comedian Stan Freberg.  But somehow, Stan Freberg is not Jewish.  Which leads me to #3…

3.  There are a lot of comedians that I thought were Jewish who are not.

In the past I’ve mistaken several of the people on the list as Jews: Lily Tomlin, Robin Williams (have you ever seen his Jewish imitation?  And that body hair…), and maybe Jonathan Winters even fell into that category once or twice.  But the one that shocked me the most is Steven Wright. How is that man not a Jew? He’s looks and sounds just like this one uncle I have who’s always going on about the benefits of wheatgrass, and he’s not even half?

4.  The dominators.

Jews, black people, and men without hair.  This is one of the few times that these three groups are the majority.  As for women, forget about it.  The only solo comedy album on this list is by Lily Tomlin, and the other woman to appear on it is Elaine May with Mike Nichols.  No Gilda Radner Live From New York?  And also, how the hell is there no live Roseanne Barr album floating around out there?  Isn’t it about time to reissue her early 90s classic I Enjoy Being A Girl, and give the lady some respect?