Surprisingly, many people don’t know the name “Lewis Black.” But he is easily recognizable on sight as the angry gray-haired comic, the one who looks strangely akin to Al Franken.
Lewis Black has been doing comedy for a long time. In addition to touring clubs and other locations across the country, he has had a regular segment on the Daily Show, hosted his own TV show, appeared in several movies, and written two books (both of which became best-sellers).
The Carnegie Hall Performance is a 2-disc set of Black’s show at one of the most respected venues in the country, from September 24th 2005. At the outset, Black acknowledges how wrong and “stupid” it is for him to be playing Carnegie Hall – as well as for his audience to be there watching him.
Any Lewis Black fan will enjoy this album. It is him doing what he does – pointing out the things that are wrong with our country, but doing it in a funny way. Since this is an audio CD, listeners will miss out on his facial expressions and hand gestures, which are a large part of his act. However, it is still a great CD to listen to in the car.
Some of the topics Black discusses (rants about) in this show include performing at the White House Correspondence Dinner (standing right next to Dick Cheney and watching him laugh hysterically), Jewish holidays, adults that dress up for Halloween, and of course, candy corn.
The Carnegie Hall Performance doesn’t include some of Black’s funniest material, but it is a great show. Anyone who has never seen or heard Black perform would do better to watch him rather than listen, at least at first.
This album contains many explicit lyrics; it is not for children and definitely not safe for the workplace. Black uses expletives freely, but he does not use them as a crutch or a gimmick – they fit naturally into his speech, and his act would sound hollow without them.
The Carnegie Hall Performance (produced by Comedy Central Records) won a Grammy in 2007 for Best Comedy Album. It can be purchased online from Amazon for $11.99, Buy.com for $10.28, or MusicToday for $13.99. It can also be bought as an MP3 from Amazon and MusicToday, and Amazon has the individual tracks available for $0.99 each, if you want to give the album a try before paying the full price to buy it.
For more information about Lewis Black, visit his website: LewisBlack.com.