20 Burst results for "Lenny Bruce"
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"Carlin and richard pryor. And then obviously sam kennison and all of these guys any comedian. The idea that someone could get arrested for saying obscene were dawn. Stage now seems out leg absurd but but here we are here. We are still having discussions about and debates about what is the first amendment mean what is freedom of speech what should freedom of speech be. And so i think one thing. That lenny bruce will be remembered for always and it was a champion of was the first amendment of freedom of speech and he did get down in the weeds legally and educated himself and he as you said wrote a lot of pieces and he was the inspiration for as you said. Richard pryor and george carlin and the most incredible comedians who weren't even didn't even say some of the things all that often that were a problem for lenny bruce but he was not only an inspiration for the craft and the innovation but for his championing first writes first amendment rights. And how important that is to us right. And also his very heavy biting satire of hip. What he saw as a hypocritical society and i think it goes back to the strip clubs like i said earlier. I think he goes back to like. We live in very moral society where there's a big church and then we go to strip club and there's a bunch Married guys watching naked women. Like what's what are these vows me. What is this whole thing word subscribing to me. I love that because as psychiatrist and psychoanalyst the concept of splitting the concept of splitting which is defense mechanism whereby people want to disown. The part of themselves that they feel is not acceptable right not acceptable urges. And they do that by on the other side saying. I'm really none of those things. I'm all these marvelous incredible moral things. And that's where we have these cases that we see of the reverend zack. who's preaching. You know there should be no homosexuality and no drugs and no promiscuity and at the same time as doing all those things are we. Have you know the politician whose legislating for every conservative. You know we shouldn't have any of these things in his in secret. He's doing all those things and it's when those things split which is really what lenny. Bruce pointed out. The hypocrisy slid him. Interesting behaviors can happen the behaviors happen and if we would integrate those urges in.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"It's so interesting. Why why lenny. Bruce does it have anything to do with like. He's a jewish guy in a time when it wasn't making fun of catholic high. Yes making catholics. Not not a popular. Time to be a jew and well. When is it appropriate. Time to be a jew but not a popular. Time to be a jew and certainly making fun of catholics. Was that really the crux of why because certainly lots of guys were saying these words as you point out this was just not at that point. There were other people doing what he was doing. And he hadn't yet made as jackie kennedy running away. You know on the hood of the car comment yet. Which definitely definitely put him over the edge and you could see why they might have gone after him for that but it's even before then it was just i again. I think it was just was look comedians usually and entertainers there were local laws. And this was at the time that you couldn't say something obscene on stage and so it all came down to the definition of what obscene meant and there was a supreme court ruling earlier about pornography. And what that means and so we were just kind of figuring it out look. Comedians had been arrested before. Comedians have been you know but never will say i just wanted to loop back way early comedy to a comedian mae west who did a show on broadway and was not only rested. Spent ten days in jail at something. That never happened to lenny bruce. So just as a society. I think lenny bruce like the fact you're arresting me proves my point that we can't that it's not like people were complaining in the club to the local cops. I can't believe what just happened. I took my daughter to the show and nobody was complaining. These were adults pain money to see this guy and he said this word ten letter word and then he was arrested after the show and that was the start of it. It's just it's still too today. I'm still baffled at the manpower to just go through all of this for that crime of saying those words. Let's take a quick break here. We'll be back in a moment weight loss. It feels like a cycle like my body's always working against me pushing back on all of my progress. I learned that anytime. I lose weight. My body tries to gain it right back. Finally i discovered it's not entirely my fault. I know healthy..
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"He's still doesn't brash but he now does so much more than that and this is the start of him really becoming what we think of. Is this the lenny. Bruce guy you know. It's fascinating because other drugs do health way hinson. This inhibits him. But so when you take this is what's fascinating about talent and you know exceptional talent. Where where's it. come from. Well you know having spent years practicing craft so it's not like it came out of. It's not like he started that way. You know he. He did something in immersed himself in learning this craft for a practicing it for a really long time and then he hits a point where he is already probably a somewhat disinherited type of person and obviously a creative person in terms of figuring his way in life. But now as you point out he gets more disinherited by this drug use and culturally at the time. What's around him to absorb jazz a highly. Creative unstructured disinherited form of music and incorporating that right is highly original super innovative and he innovate see really you know and that of course you know we're talking about one of the top ranked comedians of all time all time when you right but not not at this point. He's just a strip club. Comedian at this point. Why does he become that within four years carnegie hall right so so. How does that happen. You know whenever we're on on this podcast off and tried to choose subjects. Ooh we we we say. Wow that person was genius in an icon in the sense that they created something in their field. That didn't exist before and lenny. Bruce really exemplifies that and where does that come from the ability to innovate something that didn't exist before. And you know it is often a perfect storm. And in his case the perfect storm of the practice and therefore having true the talent the impact of the environment around you. And they're being something in the environment that you pick up on and can use creatively so he had something inside at something outside and in that ven diagram of the two right he creates this new area of comedy right and also he's hitting it at the right time which is just one and these small clubs the new breeding ground for comedians as opposed to vaudeville or the borscht belt like he is here and especially in san francisco with more saul and jonathan winters. And there's just kind of a new wave of comedians that are embraced and also by mainstream. And he's one of those torchbearers in fact they were called. Believe it or not. They were called the sick comedians of that time and the whole article in time magazine about the sick knicks and believe it or not. It's not only Shelley berman and lenny. Bruce but it's also bob newhart. Who couldn't were also kind of the beginning of that mesh comedy and satire. That they were saturdays. Right exactly exactly. They're very rare rare. Yes will rogers certainly made political jokes but these comedians made fun of the political system. And lenny bruce in particular made fun of not only the political system not in a liberal conservative kind of way just in the pockets he kind of way but really his real target one of his real targets was hypocrisy especially in religion because really what he went after which is what we'll talk about later..
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"A like. Oh let me up. Route the apple cart and this terrible burned down the. I don't think he was that at all. But the wish to be part of some sort of authority in a way that worked for him. You know the wish to be with his dad or the wish to be. I mean he joined the navy but then when it wasn't what he thought it would be right. He had no problem telling them is gay thoughts. You know. i guess. What i'm saying is it's not all one way you're right. It's it's a conflict right. I wanna be with you but at the end of the day. I'm going to chafe under your what i see as capricious rules or disappointing rules or whatever you know whatever maybe went wrong because of course it is baffling right. He did everything he could to get out of the navy. And but then goes back to the merchant marine eventually quit stay very long as the merchant marine because he also was sending notes to this stripper name who lived now. I think miami. And was like i think i wanna marry you. He was smitten by her. Like and i think so that we can say that's pretty that seems like a pretty over determined choice to choose an exotic dancer a stripper like his mother and at the same time. Interestingly right he certainly could have maybe say could have had his pickup strippers like he. He was exposed to made right through dancers lenny. Bruce had no problem meeting and sleeping with women like he was very charming. He really lock in just a smart like that was never prob. He was just smitten by this woman. And like i said earlier. Like the conservative. All i wanna marry her not. Let's live together like let's get married like this is the one that's pretty strong for somebody like that right it. It is strong. It is strong but you know if you wanna speak to some sort of conflict around walking the walk in the the family man the authority line though the nineteen fifties the way it's supposed to be versus. Not marriage would be you know. People didn't really. I mean shacking up was done but it wasn't a big thing it was. It was definitely choosing the more degenerate life if you were shacking up as opposed to the white picket fence idea of getting married and really getting married. His exotic mother did exempt dancer. Mother did right. And i just wanna say i feel like sally's act wasn't full on like stripper. Exotic like a comedic take on kind of funny dance just so i just feel like it's not like oh. She was just destroyed but hi harlow was a stripper. No question about that right and they married but it does sound like it was an incredibly turbulent relationship because there was the drugs were starting to get involved with that and she had already had a drug arrest and so it was but they ended up moving.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"And was he at this point. Moving into what i think is kind of been referred to as the spritz. The satires that spiraled into like total disintegration. No no fair comedian. Who's like oh i. I'm working strip clubs you know and now i'm starting to work in like these little nightclub gigs. And his big debut at the strand didn't go well and so he's he gets a gig in baltimore and that's where he meets this stripper. Is there anything else. We want to talk about these the the night the early nightclub years the impressionist years of his. This is before he was dirty. Land this before any of this stuff. In a matter of fact he was on a you know the tonight show on nbc before the tonight show there was something broadway open house and he was on there. And he's there with buddy hackett and they're doing like sketches and stuff so he's part of that group of young comics so at that point he seems sort of on the straight narrow if you will in terms of question doing what. They're all trying to do but he's now making a lot of money and this is i mean if there's one question i would like i mean there's a million questions i'd like to ask but it was like. Why did you like you were doing all right. You're doing these little clubs. Why did you want to join. The merchant marine was just to make some money and the obviously didn't have a great time in the navy. So there's no evidence to release just why he would do that except to say that the importance for him. And i'm conjecturing here because i can't speak to him and i have not spoken to him but the importance of being in some sort of loggerheads with authority in some way which really was early on in his life and you know he goes back and forth. I'm having a fight with you. And i put you down. And maybe he retreats from that at certain points but but that theme of being anti-totalitarian and wanting to be in a fight about it you point to episodes from early life really all the way through to the end where tragically we know. I know. i think it's little more nuance than that. As i've looked back on it. Because even his the guy who did a robber woo incredible biography. I mean documentary about him. Said like in a way lenny bruce was. There was a conservative side to lenny. Bruce he wasn't like when he got arrested and he wasn't like oh the pigs or these horrible. You call them peace officers. He really thought he believed in the justice system. He felt like oh. All i need to do is staying on jumping ahead. But he like so. I don't know if it was like fu system. I think his big thing was like guys. We gotta stop being hypocritical especially about religion and politics and sexuality and race. We just we just have to tell the truth. So i think he was more of a truth seeker than.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Personology
"Lenny. Bruce porn leonard. Alfred schneider was one of the best standup comedians. Of all time he was also social critic. And satirist who used politics. Religion sex and vulgarity to challenge and criticize social mores of the time and faced multiple arrests for obscenity. He created an open. The door for future counterculture comedians. My guest today is wayne. Federman who in addition to being a successful comedian after teaches. Stand up history and performance at university of southern california. He co hosts the popular podcasts. The history of standup which is also the name of his upcoming book. I'm delighted to have today. leonard. Alfred schneider was born october thirteenth. Nineteen twenty five in mineola long island and nice jewish suburb. a nice jewish boy to jewish. Parents I laughed because i'm jewish and i know i know this set well and i don't think they've changed that much over the decades but his mother sadie and his father. Myron were a jewish couple. Who actually were. I'd say lower middle-class right. Dad was a shoe clerk and mom was actually quite an exotic dancer and they were trying to have a family in a in a suburban area of sort of middle lower class. His childhood was really interrupted. Let's say i buy not only financial struggles but by divorce so the parents didn't really get along terribly. Well do we know anything about the quality of their relationship and the impact on at the time. Little any this is one of the problems with lenny. Bruce is that he wrote a autobiography with paul crasner. And then there was a biography written about him which contradicts some of the things. He wrote in his autobiography. So there's a little bit of. It's not exactly what we do know this. We do know that we were going to call her. Sally is the mom because that was her stage. Name and mickey was the dad. The podiatrists to one or two also be a pharmacist and shoe salesman slash podiatrist and yes. They didn't get along well and got divorced. When lenny was five years old and that's important for people to understand terms of were always talking about trying to understand what is formative in a young person's life there's always the biology going into understanding a person's character and the struggles that they might have but there's also early life often trauma that can shape that and in the case of certainly there were divorces. That did happen even in the nineteen twenties but not a huge number not lake. You know started occurring. And let's say the seventies eighties but divorced it happen and it was disruptive and it was difficult on chill. It still remains difficult on children..
Here's What We're Watching During Quarantine
"I've had for years box. Dvd set that celebrates the Chicago Bulls six championships in the nineteen nineties. The title is NBA Dynasty Series Chicago Bulls Real quick takeaways couple takeaways Scottie. Pippen totally underrated. I I mean. I know he's considered a legend and one of the top fifty basketball players all time. But but he's even better than that as far as the goat discussion. Greatest of all time between Jordan and Lebron James. All right I conceded. I think it was a year or so ago that Lebron has probably taken that title. I'm more than willing to be argued that I'm more than willing to be argued wrong as a Chicagoan but one thing is for sure after going through some of these. Dvd's Jordan is so much more fun to watch. I mean he just. He spent so much time doing beautiful things. High up in the air way above Lebron's had would have been so That's just a blast to watch now. You can't this is kind of a sneaky. Pick you can't stream this. Dvd set so. I'll take this occasion as an excuse to mentioned that. Espn's ten part Michael Jordan Doc. The last eight they move that up it was gonNA come out on June nineteenth. Yup the release date is April nineteenth. So obviously I can't wait for that listeners. I can maybe loan you my bulls box set because it isn't streaming but otherwise just look for the last dance this weekend on ESPN. I will be watching it. Yeah I have not seen the set that you are watching but I cannot wait for Sunday night. When the ten part doc starts it's been this mythical thing that's been rumored to be in production or potentially production for some time new house coming out and ESPN wisely bumping that up. I think it's something that a lot of people just like us are going to be watching my number three these fall under the category of blind spots and in this case there is a specific hook to Josh. Though it wasn't by design all explain it's my unofficial slash official. Bruce SURTEES MARATHON. So one day. I realize I'm kind of running out of options in terms of things that are really hooking me on net flicks and I know that there are some things I should get to real cinematic blind spots that have been mentioned on the show over the years that I feel regret about but they just seem heavy. I'm not ready for it yet. I need stuff. That's under two hours. I can knock it out and I needed to be reasonably entertaining but I do still WanNa feel like I'm getting some homework done. I do still want to feel like I've crossed something off my list that I felt for some time that I needed to get to so I went over to Amazon prime. And one of the things that popped up happen to be dirty Harry the first dirty Harry movie with Clint. Eastwood Don Siegel directed and right away. I realized how stylishly shot it was and so after I watched it I looked up who the DP was and I see that. It's Bruce Surtees. I think yeah I know that name. I can't really tell you what else he's done. I don't know much about his history's legacy at all but that is a name I have heard and oh I'll just file that away okay. So what's next? Couple of days later I go back to prime one of the film's POPs up. Lennie the Bob. Fosse directed film about Lenny. Bruce and that really is one for me. I've always been ashamed because I adore. Is You know all that jazz. Fosse's film I like cabaret quite a bit as well and in the TV series Fossey Verdon some of the making of Lenny POPs up in that TV series it. Of course POPs up in all that jazz as well. A lot of cutting to scenes of the fosse alter Ego Joe Gideon cutting the movie. That would become lenny so it was kind of just been a joke for me that I've never watched this film. I decide I'm going to sit. And Watch Lenny and. I'm watching the credits. And whose name POPs up is responsible for the Black and white cinematography. It's Bruce Thirty so then decide okay. Well this is just too convenient too much of a coincidence. We're going to make this happen and I'll give you just a little bit of background on him. Is He a name? That's familiar to you at all Josh. Young familiar with the name. I don't think I would have been able to identify any of his movies though right so he got his start as a camera. Operator working with Don Siegel and especially on Siegel and Clint Eastwood Films in the late. Nineteen sixty so movies like two mules for sister Sarah and Cubans Bluff and then his first role as a cinematographer. As the director of photography was Nineteen. Seventy-one it was the beguiled so that Seagal Directing Eastwood and then play misty for me followed that where he was working with eastward again but this time Eastwood as director that was his debut he died in twenty twelve and if you look at his. Imdb the early two thousands in the nineties were not good to surtees out of maybe twenty. Titles there's not one that really stands out as essential viewing and even at the end of the eighties. The decade closed for surtees with rat boy back to the beach and licensed to drive in the eighties for him was otherwise filled with a lot of eastwood's stuff prior to that so movies like Fire Fox and tight rope and sudden impact even honky. Tonk man his heyday really was the nineteen seventies which brought me to night moves. This is an Arthur Penn. Early Bleak Neo Noir starring Gene Hackman as a former football player turned disillusioned private. I would other type of private. I is there in the seventies and it's all set within the movie business so it's reflexive to in the mode of Altman's the long goodbye and then the one I most recently watched was another Eastwood blindspot. Which is Pale writer?
"lenny bruce" Discussed on WGN Radio
"What the blues good thing is I mean I'm on the radio the first night of my life and this starts to go and I didn't realize that I it was Lenny Bruce queued up until I hit it and then I think do I stop this you know I I I went for bold and said no we're you know we've had it we're going to stick with it and I I I listen to this whole thing and I can't think of this woman who just hung up from Fulton completely in order I mean the good news is I didn't lose my gig because I played of late enough where nobody's gonna yeah which is what was the case here W. G. what you're doing now what's sad you what you're doing reading it late yeah yeah and you know I mean if I got away with it thirty years ago you'd think I could get away with it again so there's nothing there is nothing this is one of those this was one of Lenny's routines where he didn't get arrested because there's nothing obscene there's no bad words there's no yeah there's no there's there's no obscenity and Dalesman Lenny Bruce Allen jail when he got arrested and Mister Kelly in Chicago no course not who right right hello Hey the mail and it was because he said the word now go to Walker yeah there is that he got arrested for that the police went on stage and the rest of him after he said that word okay times have changed when I was on his political correctness around I think the governor gets handcuffed arrested though I mean you know a year yeah it's objectionable as of knowing but it's not it's not being put in jail and you know it's like cheese okay hi hi parts of mine the reason I'm calling you first of all I know that you for for those of you unfamiliar with Mike Flores let me give a brief background and you know there's so much more than I know about but what I do know is you founded the psychotronic film society which is you know one one of the jewels of the Chicago culture and it's been around for decades you were you enjoyed the support of Roger Ebert who periodically came out to support you and your very soon Devers you had a working relationship with Glenn close who is a the founder of the second syllables don't close close yeah and and you've written the number of plays you made some movies you do you lose your lecture on earlier something of a historian got so ridiculous and my favorite thing about you is you've got a C. I. A. metal in your pocket I want to ask you is it you always say that you have on your pocket let me see it you pulled it out of your pocket blew me away actually in detention intelligence agency okay by mistake and I I was telling let me about Disney so what do you what do you get it for and I I don't know what why how come you got there if I tell you I had to kill you okay I think that's what you told me the last time I that's what it okay hi I'm good with that I can live with that the but the reason why I got you on the show how much time we got here Kerr's world hold on just a few more minutes that's very vague terms going I I've been reading you both online about this corona virus in you've been ahead of the media by about two weeks all the way I read did you say something you say here's what's gonna happen next and doggone it if that doesn't happen next and then I read what's going to happen next dog gone if it doesn't happen next I mean this weed today I heard for the first time that we are the epicenter this country all of the corona virus pandemic I I I don't know what that means to you could you give us a brief a pervert brief idea of what's coming up well I think the fantasy that this is going to be over within a couple of weeks it is a fantasy I think we should look around in June or July does she how strange are going then until you get a vaccine which could be a year to year and a half away it's not a good balance and we're not going to be the same city or in the same country and the reason I've been two weeks ahead of the media is because my girlfriend lives in northern Italy and everything that's been happening in Italy two weeks later hits here that's not good and it's a it's shown but we're at the crossroads you know when to put a Rico got hit which is why the tsunamis all that stuff's we thought we had a shortage of IV bags we had a shortage of medicine for diabetics and heart people because all the factory where in Porter Rico and we were too busy banning plastic bags and straws and all this nonsense and trying to change the weather and a hundred or two hundred years and now we find out eighty percent of our pharmaceutical drugs come from China yeah we either have to start dealing with these problems right now right now today that we face the beaches in Chicago disappearing California New York do for earthquakes the change coming right now then these viruses coming out of China even if this one ends is going to be more because they would rather spend the money on propaganda and teach people in China basic hygiene I mean they have an open street markets where there is no refrigeration and they sell meat fish it's not good when we took this Chicago psychotronic film society and put it on Facebook then became the first online film society I had no idea all this was gonna happen all right for your plan I I thought this was a result of the fire I actually did that I had to choose between going back to Mars where we used to do shows and buyers around town to going online and becoming a global film society and so the Chicago psychotronic film society cycle and then the movie psycho trying to act as an electronic or science fiction the Chicago psychotronic film society on Facebook post the wild the weird Indian saying and the bonds and now that shooting that's what people want they want a couple hours where they don't have to deal with all this hotter as that's going on because you know what you just said I'm two weeks ahead okay where only the beginning okay Daniel mark I'm going to stop you there because I got about a time here I got other things are going to do that thank you for taking the time psychotronic film society how do people find that is on the internet okay where does Chicago psychotronic psycho is in the movie psycho China H. as in electronic science fiction the Chicago psychotronic film society we're on Facebook we post a movie and the wild and weird stuff every day come check it out wherever you are around the globe okay thanks Mike re talking deal later right my floor as late as Germany's fantastic that guy I really some kind of genius I don't know what kind but I mean he knows way too much about way too much and it was nice is to share that by the way hello you get a quick we got one more time for one more audition here one more addition let what we owe as you like your career on Shakespeare Shakespeare this is popped up scaled smart by William Shakespeare.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"You know the most creative and theatrical person would perform Linian we'd have prosecutors Witnesses panel of judges and they usually found him not guilty but there was always a strong argument about his his offensiveness. But for Lenny Bruce. The real person he was found guilty he was the three judge panel. They convicted him of obscenity and sentenced him to serve four months but he was not well behaved during the trial. And I'm wondering if you think. His guilty verdict came at in any part because he Interfered in his own defense. He did Lenny was not patient for the law or he was and he was not patient for his lawyers and he kept firing lawyers. He would not. He didn't sustain lawyers from one trial to the next he offended the judge judges Yeah his unwillingness to sit by and let his lawyers do their work. I think really interfered with his defense because there was a body of argument by nineteen sixty four that his lawyers in Illinois had worked out his conviction in Chicago is overturned by the Illinois Supreme Court his successful defence in San Francisco. There was a kind of body of argument about his work. That was available to the lawyers and Lenny was just really impatient with his lawyers and and interjected interrupted. And do you think that That affected his verdict. Oh definitely yeah no question. He had been more patient and allowed his lawyers to do their work. They would have been able to They would have been able to marshal a defense that would have Used the most recent rulings in the Supreme Court and in the Illinois Supreme Court as precedents to to defend him The owner of cafe. Au Gogo he was also prosecuted right and this is kinda thing about like the shrinking spaces for Linney. Is that the the the club owners could be prosecuted or they could have. They could lose their licenses. One of the versions or kind of Ansa Larry Instruments that were used. In the obscenity. Laws is new. York state. Passed the Wales actor the whales padlock law. That meant that the the city's Commissioner of licenses could go in and shut down clubs where there was obscene materials being performed and so that the club owners were really vulnerable to right if they if the place where rating their joints they could lose their licenses they could be hauled into jail as well. So Howard Solomon. Who owned The cafe? Au go go. He was also successfully prosecuted but then his conviction was overturned by appellate court. New York essentially said that Bruce's performances did have social importance right that he was addressing serious problems and of religious hypocrisy and racial and religious prejudices etc. And that argument was there that that's kind of legal framework was available and but Lenny His impatience rate really really hindered him and then he he was also at the same time that he was being prosecuted in New York. He was in the courts in. La For jumping bail and for possession of heroin. So he's sort of flying back and forth between New York and L. A. He's missing court. Dates is heroin addiction. Really Kind of overwhelmed him and made made him serve less able to focus. It was ultimately that heroin addiction that led to his demise. He never served four months. He was he was sentenced. He peeled your rain free on bail but he the shrinking spaces that you talk about forced him into a situation where he couldn't work. No club wanted to bulk him out of the fear they be dragged into a case themselves and then in nineteen sixty. Six Lenny Bruce. Well he overdosed and died while working on that appeal a curious fact. He left his typewriter on and his last sentence typed ever was conspiracy to interfere with the fourth amendment. And we just won't know what that meant to him in his own mind had become a kind of constitutional scholar right so he was He was thinking hard about these issues of the bill of rights and in fact the nation because of his trial had to think hard about these issues his trial and his efforts to to bring forth. These questions changed the nation. In a way I wonder. What do you think changed after Bruce's death? And what part did he play in that change? Well I think he really. He opened up the space comedians. To be much more kind of revolved and provocative Much more willing to kind of challenge that the cultural conventions to challenge serve assumptions about what constituted decency So I think you know. His kind of transformation of the of the comedy industry is huge. People like George Carlin Who like watched lenny perform and then would open for Lenny? Dick Gregory Richard. Pryor we wouldn't have Sarah Silverman Amy Schumer. Right Without Lenny Bruce. There's no question that he really paved the way for a different kind of comedic performance. But I think the fact that Lenny died as a junkie Made it kept him marginal right. So that the kind of critique that he offered up to the mainstream culture Gets A LITTLE SILENCED? As well by his death because it becomes evidence that this guy was kind of crazy person on the margins and so. I'm not sure that in the mainstream he transforms the culture that much but I think that people who are operating as Comedians and social critics he becomes a really powerful powerful symbol powerful voice and then and then a kind of model who they emulate a May slowly steadily help transform the culture.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
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You can find your best price and apply at policy genius. Dot Com policy genius. We'll always get the future wrong. Better get life insurance right. What's more recently People might recognize the name. Lenny Bruce Because he is portrayed in the TV show the Marvelous Missiles Mazel in the show. Bruce's played by actor. Luke Kirby though some critics have said that he plays a sort of a fairy godmother equivalent of the real. Any Bruce. You've watched the show. What do you think of his portrayal? Well he certainly looks like him An and I think you know. He has kind of the same vocal quality. There is not that. Kind of fiery underground subterranean critic. I think in in in that performance. And certainly not the not the junky Lenny Bruce. Right Buddy Bruce. Winds up arrested a lot for possession of drugs. He dies of a drug overdose. And you don't get that sense of lineas. Somebody who sort afraid right. His nerves are frayed. His sensibilities are afraid. He's he's Kinda peripatetic. It really inhibits his defenses. His legal defenses. So you know it's it's a very cleaned up. Version of Lenny Bruce Though I must say I have not watched beyond the second season to to know where they've gone with Lenny Bruce Character and whether he whether he is there is the kind of dissent of linear into his Serve near madness. I think that's the thing about the beats two right. There is a kind of understanding of madness right that these central beat characters are right. They're aware of madness They're aware of their own kind of insanity And that that's part of their poetics. Let's talk about the fiery underground Junkie Bruce that might be missing from that characterization. Bruce continued to perform his brand of comedy into the sixties But he was in and out of jail being arrested for obscenity and of course arrested for his addiction to heroin as well At the same time he was growing in fame but then came his boss in the spring of nineteen sixty four a sting operation set up in Greenwich Village. The Cafe Gogo describe this arrest for us. How how was it set up? Well one of the things that Lenny was up against right is is sort of ambitious district attorney's ambitious prosecutors and angry white ethnic Catholic cops. Either you know when he's arrested in San Francisco in La in Chicago and New York right. He's arrested by politically ambitious prosecutors. Who WanNa get dirty lenny? Right and they send their cops into the clubs and they watch his acts and the cops become the States witnesses in his acts so Richard Richard Q. And New York is. He's running for mayor And Frank Cogan the assistant district attorney. Richard used the district attorney They want to clean up New York and so many becomes this really kind of useful symbol right of the kind of smugness of New York that dirt of New York that they want to go after and shutdown and so they send cops and to watch his shows. A CAFE AU Gogo on three different occasions in the cops accumulate this body of evidence about way and they sort of come back with these. You know this is the kind of language that he's using this as how he's talking about orgasms and body parts and His offensive language right Blasphemous and sacrilegious language. And that's and so then. The prosecutors are able to kind of mount an argument that he has that he has kind of offended contemporary community standards and tastes. And that's part of the language of the obscenity law And then he's also because he's talking about sex and body parts that he's also appealing to print interest so the operation sets them up as it's not. I mean I sting is an accurate. But it's just they just send in the cops to watch him and they get evidence from his performances and that evidence is used in his trial Which was followed by many people gained a lot of media attention? Celebrities attended and testified. Woody Allen Norman mailer sociologists others right there. It's thirty different witnesses. So certainly it's a spectacle and it begins consume Lenny Bruce's life and enters his comedy routines as well. So I'm interested for Lenny. Bruce what do you think he thought was at stake in his trial beyond just his freedom the First Amendment Right. He's really Very literal about the First Amendment right that he has free speech in the First Amendment ought to protect that right of free speech and that Obscenity Law is obstructed obstructs the First Amendment right. So there's this kind of collision between obscenity law in the First Amendment and he thinks that the first amendment serve purely understand ought to protect his his right to speech and so that for him that kind of ability to stand up sort of naked in front of microphone in front of a group of people and hold forth is a fundamental guarantee and promised in the constitution or the bill of rights. And that and so I think for him. That's really what's at stake. And then the kind of the right to be truthful the right to be critical stuff that would be protected in print is not necessarily protected when performed orally and. I think that he's kind of astonished. That obscenity law is still effectively. Used to silence provocative speech sexual speech. Speech that offense and he does give offense right and he's deliberately giving offense so yeah. I think for him. It's like that. I think he thinks of some selfish kind of a martyr for the first amendment. Not Certainly how. He's been received over time his trial New York for you is a bit special because you in your capacity as a professor have Reenacted held mock trials for Lenny Bruce in your classes. I'm very curious About what the purpose of this exercise is for your students and And how did these trials go? Well they were fun to do and and I think the you know the purpose was that in one thousand nine hundred sixty three and nineteen sixty. Four New York obscenity law is still very ambiguous it both the kind of decisions in the Supreme Court in the Roth case in nineteen fifty seven and the Jacob Ellas case they have provided more space for speech that is sexual speech and that serves a kind of larger public interest in the Roth case. That Supreme Court said that all ideas that have even the slightest redeeming social importance. Right Unorthodox ideas hateful ideas even are protected right but they're not protected so there's protected speech but then they're not protected if they're obscene because obscene speech is not protected so the court it takes away and then and then they have these tests right. If it's to the average person applying contemporary community standards if the dominant theme taken as a whole appeals to interest thin it's obscene and the Jacker Bellas case a few years later serve uses the language utterly without redeeming social interest. So the thing that I wanted my students to look out was alright. Is Lenny speech? Does it have redeeming social interest or is utterly without redeeming social interests does it offend contemporary community standards for the average person and so? I think what was rich about it is that they could look at Lenny's performances and some can say wow that is really offensive and others could say but he's making the social argument and they were not and they really went back and forth because his his narrative so that was part of the problem was lenny's performance as he rift and so they were kind of They were broken stream of consciousness things at certain points he would be he would just sort of break from one thought to the next so it was very hard for him and for his lawyers to say. There was a kind of sustained argument so the taken as a whole thing was complicated and so for the students. I was really interesting to see how that law given. Its vagueness could still be used to find him guilty of obscenity and for those who wanted to Defend them they could say no this. His work really did have redeeming social interest at spoke to even if it wasn't cohesive even if these weren't kind of cohesive argue must. I was enough in them that it was a kind of sustained critique that did have social interest. I think that's what that kind of the ambiguity of the law and how he could both stake out a successful defense and and also how the prosecutors could successfully prosecute him was. It was a ritual way to look at how of Senator Law functioned in the early sixties. Right on the verge of the sixties. That was pretty interesting. So I'd get students to perform lenny..
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"Like many comedians lenny. Bruce started his career telling traditional jokes in the early nineteen fifties. He could be heard on the radio doing celebrity impressions but as the decade wore on Bruce crew tired doing the same old stick postwar America elevated traditional values. The country laugh to shows like I love Lucy. Father knows best Bob Hope. The biggest comedian at the time was anything but edgy but bruce all a different America than the one portrayed in the mainstream he was a fan of the beat generation. A group rejected propriety. Embraced sex drugs and jazz. Soon Bruce would we've all those things into his act and comedy would never be the same. He delivered scathing monologues against people and institutions. The Nation held sacrosanct religion the role of women even abortion laws. Critics called him a sick. Comic Clubs refused to Book Him and his act also got him in trouble with the law. Bruce was arrested. Fifteen times in less than two years often for obscenity but after a comedy clubs staying in one thousand nine hundred sixty four. Bruce faced the trial of his lifetime and it wasn't just bruce on trial. It was the future of free speech in America. Today we talked to Brett Gary about that trial. He's an associate professor in the Department of Media Culture and Communication at New York University. Here's our conversation Brett Gary Welcome to American scandal. Thank you very much happy to be here before we talk about Lenny. Bruce the man. I WanNa talk about the America. He was performing in two very different country than it is today. It's the in many ways we think of this time as the the leave it to beaver fifties America. But that clearly wasn't where Lenny Bruce was coming from. So can you characterize America and Lenny Bruce's America For us to set the stage sure. Lenny was operating in the subterranean spaces of nineteen fifties America. And I think part of what he's doing is he's arguing against and critiquing the dominant culture. The kind of culture of consensus around family marriage Christianity heterosexuality have the reverence for the government reverence for the military reverence for religious officials. So all of those things were Com objects of mockery or scorn for him And I think that you know one of the things. He's paying attention to the the deeply racist elements in the society the suppression of homosexuality or the repression of it. The absence of a free speech tradition. That certainly concerns him and I think that he's He's really concerned that there's kind of an absence of a sustained critique that's really available to the public about calling into question the hypocrisies of the dominant culture the way in which Official speeches polite speech so he has a kind of sustained argument with the culture And I think also has kind of sustained argument with it serve overwhelmingly Christian Dimensions as a kind of Wild Ju on the margins. He's really attentive to the way in. Which the the kind of overarching themes emphasis in. The culture are are really a Christian in their frameworks. So you mentioned that he was reacting to an absence of sustained critique He certainly brought that sustained critique in his style of humour when he inaugurated his style when he finally found himself in nightclubs. How was he received by audiences? One of the things. That's interesting about him is that he finds a style in strip clubs before he makes his way into nightclubs. He's the MC and strip clubs in L. A. And in those spaces anything went so he could say the most outlandish things really provocative he could play to his audience which was a an audience that was not a sort of rarefied audience. He was so it was kind of in the in the language of the time. It was a kind of low clientele right and kind of low brow forms and he spoke to that and he developed a style and he realized that those audiences responded and so he took that style and he took his stick and his critique into nightclubs and then he found that people responded very strongly to it they. They appreciated his astute observations about the culture. His play with language His use of vulgarity. That he was not afraid of the vernacular be used vulgar words. He talked about sex. He talked about masturbation and oral sex and homosexuality and So those audiences who came to the nightclubs often which we're still kind of marginal spaces. They were there for that they were. They were very interested in hearing dirty. Linear OR LINEAR THE SICKO. They knew what they were getting or they knew what they hope to get so they were attracted to that space. But I think that that's an important part of the Lenny story too is that he's he is operating in this kind of marginal cultural spaces. That don't have the kind of protection around them. They say the print culture has that book publishing industry has or that. The film industry has or the universities have He's he's an operating in spaces. That are much more vulnerable to surveillance. They're much more vulnerable to police raids. they're much more vulnerable to vice squads. That MAKES THEM EDGY. Spaces and the audience go. They go there for their edginess and they're rewarded for going there but his provocations are observed as well let's talk about his provocations his vulgarity and especially his relationship with obscenity. You know he started in strip clubs and was clearly very close to this line in society Let's listen to a clip. From wanting Lenny Bruce's sets in which he addresses specifically the word obscenity. You know the meaning of sanity. Don't tune perhaps you see if I do a disgusting. Show us any disgusting where you're talking about pork. That's my right. You see is an American citizen to discuss pork. Onstage disgust all of you vegetarians and Jews and Muslims. That is my right and if you communists would like to suppress that right to talk about. Ham and pork. That's your right now. If I go a boulder show I sing rock and roll tunes. Justin most Bulga former. The big boobs knows that is not obscene. Obscenity has one specific meaning to appeal to the parent interest. Who GETS YOU HORNY? That's yes see. If that's why strip doesn't get arrested for being obscene. They come out and they do horny. Dance THE BUICK HONEY. Rape somebody who didn't see the show. That's why we have. So this word obscenity will be used against Bruce many times throughout his career but rather than ignore it like just heard he weaves it into his act getting in the head of Bruce for a moment. What do you think he felt was? Missing from comedy even the broader public discourse at the time that he embraces obscenity. I think truthfulness about sex was part of it That you know people are driven by these profound urges and they're not necessarily the urges that they're supposed to be driven by right serve people have perverse sex So I think that's part of it. The kind of the the social silences around sexuality especially the kind of verbal silences around sexuality is partly what he's getting at and I and I think what he seizes on right in this kind of in his obsession with obscenity as he's he's obsessing on the laws the obscenity laws that are silencing this conversation about sexuality so there's you know there's a kind of a long history of of obscenity. Laws used being used to silence discussions about information about ideas about human sexuality human desire fantasy arousal and linear realizes that that's the very thing that he's up against and increasingly as gets arrested and he becomes acquainted with obscenity law then that becomes kind of central to his his critique. His inquiry His performance as kind of the problem of obscenity law in the way in which obscenity.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"A few hours later lenny. Bruce sits up in his seat at the defense table. Ephraim London has just called Richard Gilman to the stand. Yeoman is a literary critic with Newsweek whereas a stylish suit that suggests that he's both smart and hip Bruce Likes them and Gillman supports Bruce. He tells the court that Bruce's intention is artistic. Bruce removes the stigma from certain words and in doing so reveals. Important truths Bruce's amazed. This endorsement of his art is far more than he could have hoped. For and soon Bruce's old friend. Nat HINT OFF. Takes a stand and off the writer for the village. Voice tells the court that Bruce is immoral comedian more so than any of his contemporaries and office followed by Alan Morrison. The city editor of Ebony magazine Morrison says that Bruce's social satire is superb and it demonstrates concern for social issues including racial equality bigotry and religious intolerance more experts. Continue to testify Bruce Behalf. They compare him to writers like James Baldwin Tennessee Williams and one of the experts Christian Minister says that Lenny. Bruce Verges on genius. After each witness steps down Bruce looks them in the eyes. Mouths of words thank you. He feels a sense of gratitude. That's almost overwhelming. He bows his head does nothing to keep the tears from falling Martin. Garbage pats his shoulder and Bruce Miles. It feels a renewed commitment to this battle. He'll show this court and the world that Lenny Bruce's more than just a troublemaker. With a foul mouth..
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"It's June seventeenth nineteen sixty four in New York City inside the Manhattan Criminal Courts Building. A crowd has gathered there hovering near the door to courtroom five thirty five where sign reads standing room. Only crowd murmurs in anticipation. Reporters spectators prospective witnesses. They're all here for day. Two of the Lenny. Bruce obscenity trial inside the courtroom. The famous comedian sits at the defense table. He staring grimly at the American flag near the witness. Stand hypocrites bruce thanks to himself. The flag has no place in this courtroom. A courtroom where prosecutors are completely ignoring the first amendment just and across the room assistant district attorney Richard Q pushes back his chair and stands Q. Gives off a commanding presence with his thick black hair in three piece suit. Bruce anxiously picks out his fingernails. His nerves shot then he turns to the elegant brain man. Sitting beside him is defense attorney f from London. London that guy me Jerry especially after what happened to the Compu- put on the stand patrolman. Neil Yeah O'Neal why we're more aggressive with the cross examination. It was like watching a nanny changing their first diaper. I need you to take these guys apart. If they find me. Guilty of obscenity. It's all over for me man lenny. I thought we were clear on this and tend to present our case my way. I know what I'm doing and if you want to win follow my lead quiet please. We're about to Brazil. Bruce starts to argue again but London Shoushan Q. Glances over at the defense table with a look of annoyance. Then he speaks to the court. The prosecution will now call Inspector Herbert Rude to the stand Bruce Glares at the inspector he knows ruse glasses moustache. He certainly remembers him from that night at cafe. All go go bruce. Had since there was something off about a guy sitting alone at a table taking notes and a comedy show and soon enough the cops showed up. They hauled Bruce Straight to the precinct headquarters. They also arrested the club's owners Howard L. solemn inspector ru is sworn in and Q. Begins his direct examination inspector route. Where you present at the cafe. I'll go the night of March thirty. First Yes sir. I was that you take detailed notes of the defendants performance that evening. Yes in fact. I have those right here. Could you please read the? First Section you identified as obscene ru sits up straight clears his throat and begins to read he even begins a slight impersonation of Lenny. Bruce where now the British they talk. Nice such beautiful sounds they can even make the words shit. Sound nice sounds elegant. The way they say Russa's jaw drops. He turns to London and grabs his arm. What's he doing? That's supposed to be me Lenny. Flees. I'll hand Lloyd ru continues his reenactment. Which for Bruce feels increasingly bizarre. Eating is very important. I say eatings really. Inactive oral copulation occurs. Most schmucks wouldn't understand. You know the word. Smock is a very interesting word Yiddish. It literally means a man's penis Bruce's had enough. Oh for God's sake London. I said I said this thing like fifteen minutes after the food thing. How Jam together like that under the the the deliveries all wrong. Where's his timing? London finally speaks up objection. The witnesses only recounting what he personally considers obscene his testimony fails to capture the artistic and philosophical nuance of my clients performance. Bruce KNOTTS head vigorously. He couldn't have said it better himself. He looks hopefully at the three judges. Who will decide his fate? One shakes his head. The judge overrules the objection. Ru Ru sinks down into a seat. Then he says no one in particular and this guy's bombing. I'm going to jail for. There's been a dull eight bruce's chest and suddenly at eight flares to a sharp pain as ru continues his testimony. Lenny Bruce winces an agonizing pain. He's felt this pain before he needs medical attention.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"Bruce begins with a few of his best clean jokes. He tells the audience he. I started smoking Marlboros. At six years old makes fun of kids. Who'VE SNIFF GLUE? He's having fun but there's something important he wants to address. You want people to know that there's more to him than four letter words. He has a reputation as being controversial and irreverent. But he says I'll tell you something. They're definitely things that offend me. Segregation offense me programs exploits societal problems under the guise of helping them. That offends me. Alan nods thoughtfully and the audience applauds. Bruce feels he's made his point. People should challenge intolerance and hypocrisy however they can bruce's weapon of choice is comedy but he also knows that the other side the establishment. They have weapons to as. He wraps up his set heads off stage. Ruth begins to wonder was honey right. How badly has he offended the people in power and if he has? When are they going to strike back? It's October fourth. One thousand nine hundred sixty one in San Francisco Lenny Bruce Stance on stage in a cramped club known as the jazz workshop. He pauses in the middle of the saddened sways slightly. He's lost his train of thought again. Then he remembers and jumps back into the material he wants to talk about a recent drug bust. Bruce offers a melancholy smile. This isn't made up material. He was arrested in Philadelphia. The previous month caught with methamphetamines. Methadone few syringes he tells the audience. It was a big misunderstanding that his doctors prescribe the drugs. Bruce is the truth is he has needed medication lately. A lot of it. He's had a rough few years. He and Hani divorced one because he was having affairs and to because he was doing too many drugs he's had his share of troubles recently. No need to invite more. So Tonight Bruce. Stick to the basics he riffs on sax and the male body. Nothing too crazy. When he's done the audience applause. He heads back towards his dressing room. Bruce TURNS A corner and stops dead in his tracks to brawny police. Officers stand in the hallway are Auerbach. The owner of the Jazz workshop turns to Bruce and sputters. I'm sorry learning. They were watching. Your Act was obscene. GotTa Take Jail. Bruce Glares at the cops hold on. You guys can't just come in here and do this. One of the officers grabs and firmly under the Alabel. Yes we can. And you're coming with us. Bruce wants to fight back but knows he won't win not when he's still high from two joints you smoke before the show outside. Bruce's lead toward a police call box across the street returns to the resting officer. What's your name anyway? James Ryan San Francisco Police Department. We're going to call the sergeant so I can tell him you've been apprehended apprehended for what for an offensive illegal act? I don't understand how you can use that word in public and think it's Ok a mischievous grin spreads across Bruce's face. What would that be? You know the word scared to say it out loud. No Go ahead. Give it a try. They'll make you feel too dangerous. Brian shoves Bruce. What makes you think you can get away talking the way you do? I'm trying to get away with anything. We should get all these so-called bad words out in the open really break them down you know. No I don't know what about the word clap. Clap bother you. Ryan thinks it over as they arrive at the call mocks no bad. Bruce can't help himself now. If you get the crap from a Ryan shows Bruce Disgust before he can finish the joke and he grabs the box. Handset REUSS TRIPS and falls to the ground. Hey Hey hey take it easy man. Hello this is officer Ryan. I'm outside the jazz workshop. Gimmie three squad cars and Paddy Wagon Right now please. Russa's on the ground giggling and Ryan reaches out and pulls him to his feet. When he bruce you're in violation of the municipal police code section. One seventy six and two. Oh five bruce stops laughing catches his breath he suddenly realizes there's nothing funny at night jam and he realizes he wishes his ex-wife. We're here to see him thing. She was so afraid of has finally come to pass. Bruce has been arrested for obscenity. And if this cops attitude is any indication all that lies ahead on problems. American scandal sponsored by best fiends. So you've got your phone in your hand a few moments to yourself. You know what will happen as soon as you unlock the screen politics epidemics nonsense from all. Directions don't go down that path. These are your moment's use them wisely best fiends as a casual but stimulating problems all in game. That has you using your wits to say the cute bugs minutia from an invasion of greedy slugs minutia as fun colorful place full of cute characters that I need to collect to use strategically in solving challenging puzzles. Anytime I need a break. 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"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"Richard. Pryor George Carlin Sarah Silverman Chris Rock. These are just a few of the stand up comedians. Who found fame with vulgar and unflinching comedy performed without fear safe with the knowledge that their material was considered free speech in America that even their raunchiest jokes fell under the protection of the first amendment. But this wasn't always the case just decades ago. It was illegal to tell boundary pushing jokes in public. Those who did could be found guilty of obscenity. A crime that could be punished with steep fines and imprisonment. It WASN'T UNTIL THE NINETEEN FIFTIES. That Lenny Bruce rose to prominence as a comedian and challenge. The Nation's obscenity laws. He was brilliant uncompromising outspoken onstage and off in his acts he skewered the norms of mainstream society. He railed against hypocrisy and comedy took a hard look at religion race politics sex and more bruce quickly became a counter cultural legend but he also became a target for those in power who saw his dissenting views as a threat. Bruce clashed frequently with law enforcement throughout his career but his decisive legal battle began in nineteen sixty four in New York City. It was a bitter fight. One that would task just how far the authorities would go in order to silence a performer. Who spoke out. And Criticize Conventional Morality. It was a trial that would not only change comedy but redefined free speech in America. This is episode. One the obscenity circus. It's April Eighteenth nineteen forty nine in New York City inside the CBS Studio Building Stage Lights. Illuminate the set of Arthur Godfrey's talent. Show Lenny Bruce waits in the wings clutching a stack of homemade cue cards. His right hand trembles for months. He's worked on these jokes and he can't afford to flop a single word. This is the number one late night variety show in the country as television. The big time could make his career. So Bruce tries to relax. He thinks he could use a drink. His armpits or moist his bowtie feels like it's choking him and that cream they used the slick down his hair so stiff now he feels like he's wearing a helmet and takes breath a break from his no cards. He watches Godfrey delivering opening monolog with his trademark folksy charm a forty five year old showbiz veteran makes it look so easy. Bruce just turned twenty four. He wonders if he'll ever be as good. Or as popular bruce drops one his cue cards curses but then glances nervously toward the nearby crew members. A makeup girl approaches stars pattering. His face but also with a smile warns him that he better not use language like that. When he's on stage just a crewman with a clipboard. Walks over and tells bruce that he's up bruce strides stage with all the confidence. He can muster. Here's a creek. As a spotlight swivels overhead following him to the microphone takes a deep breath. Looks out at the hundreds of people waiting the audience for a split. Second he hesitates. He's worked so hard to get to this moment. Refining his jokes turing tiny clubs in the middle of nowhere getting paid pennies but now that he's finally hear something feels wrong can't quite put his finger on it so the audience costs. Bruce realizes he'd better get started. He doesn't impression of James cagney crying dirty rat. It's a perfect imitation next. He does a bit about Audrey Hepburn on a date with Gregory packing and pitches his voice at just the right active. He makes a few more good nature wisecracks about movie stars in general and then before he knows that his time is up is performed his entire routine perfectly. Studio audience cheers. It's at that moment. He realizes what's bothering him. This should be the happiest moment of his life but deep down he knows how much better his performance would be if you could do things his way the way he does it sitting at the bar with his friends. That's the real lenny. Bruce the Lenny Bruce who makes cracks about the time Gregory Peck cheated on his wife. Bruce Acknowledges the applause then he heads offstage his smile. Fading if he's going to be an honest to God comet cannot some phony. He needs to do things differently. They'll have to hone his craft in front of his kind of people not these tourists suburbanites. Bruce's heard about the after hours clubs and strip joints where they don't tell you what to say or how to say it. He thinks that's where he truly belongs where he can be free on his way to the exit door rips off his Bowtie and chucked in the trash. It's early nineteen fifty seven in Los Angeles California Lenny. Bruce recline on the Black Leather Sofa in his living room impresses the damn wash cloth over his eyes and breathes slowly. He's still coming down from all the booze and pills swallowed the night before. Recovery isn't as easy as it used to be and the Bruce in his thirties. The setting sun closed through the windows lighting the room and shades of pink and gold. Bruce loves this House. La has a special place in his heart to it was here that he learned to work the burlesque scene surrounded by gyrating strippers. He developed new material that was uncensored any far cry from the material he formed eight years ago. Arthur Godfrey show in that time. He developed a following and even made some money from his work. But even well-stocked bank account can't solve a bad hangover as he reclines on the SOFA. Suddenly the wash cloth is pulled from his eyes. He grown in protest his wife drops down on the couch and tells them to get up. Her name is Hanni and Lenny met her at a strip club or she was working as a dancer. Even though Lenny's hung over he still thinks she's got the prettiest mile he's ever seen. Honey reminds him that is coming up on nighttime and she asked doesn't have a show in a couple of hours. Lenny sits up wipes his mouth his head throbs skin feel sticky. He leans into sneak a kiss but when honey catches a whiff of his breath she passing away when he pleads with her. I'm a foul mouth comedian. I don't brush my teeth. Says rather than laughing on his face Horton's and all at once and he knows what she's GonNa say. Honey reminds them that he needs to be careful in needs to clean up his act. Even if he's telling jokes at a strip club cops come around even there and they could bust him lenny frowns he rises and says he's not worried about the cops as he had toward the bathroom. Honey grabs his arm though stops him. She says she serious. He should be worried. The wrong joke in the wrong place. It'll get him arrested Lenny. Counters says. His Act isn't obscene. He talks the way people talk in real life. And there's nothing wrong with that honey. Says she understands but the police will not. She's worried he's define them to openly. Now go out of their way to make an example of him. So any pauses then. He promises that in the end. He's going to win the fight. Honey shakes her head. She tells him that depends on how he defines winning. It's April one thousand nine hundred. Eighty nine lenny. Bruce waits patiently backstage at new. York's Hudson Theater. This is the home of the Steve Allen Show. Bruce Likes Allen he wears hip black rimmed. Glasses like buddy holly and isn't afraid to be a little vulgar. In fact Steve. Allen is one of Bruce's biggest mainstream supporters. An article came out in time. Magazine Calling Bruce. The high priest of comedy as still Alan fought to keep bruce on the show as he wasted go on Bruce Milestone himself. They call him sick because he speaks his mind because he's suspicious of the hypocritical suburban world of America. But the way he sees it. That's exactly what makes him healthy. Onstage Allen begins his introduction he tells the audience that once a month they book a comedian whose going to offend everybody and tonight they have the most shocking comedian of all he calls out Lenny. Bruce's name as the house band. Fires up a song Bruce Walks. Onstage.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on American Scandal
"A listener note. This episode contains references to adult content and language and contains material that some might find offensive. It's March thirty first. Nineteen sixty four in New York City Lenny Bruce Paces backstage at the cafe au go go a new club in Greenwich Village. He loosens his skinny black tie and walks over to a scuffed up mirror. His face looks puffy. His eyes ringed with dark circles. But Bruce knows that in this dimly lit basement. No one's going to notice. Bruce runs a hands dark hair then shrugs into his black jacket Ella. Solomon the CO owner of Cafe. Au Gogo enters the room address. Kicks up dust. Hey Land Ready. Bruce Turns and gives her his most charming grin. I'll be out there allergist. Give me a minute. That's what you said ten minutes ago. I know I know. I'm just working through the opening bid I was thinking of going with Jack Kennedy. You like the Jackie bit. God forgive me but yes I do good because it's one of the last safe bits and cut left. How on Earth can that joke be saved? Her husband got killed four months ago. Well I haven't been arrested yet so it safe in my book safety. I that's my motto. What have you done with the real? Lenny Bruce I'm serious L. needs break my life bodies. Tell me that I'll get used to the handcuffs jail cells. The lawyer fees. Guess what I'll in never get used to well. I'm tired of waiting. You gotta show to do yes. Mother Bruce Follow Solomon. Down ALONG NARROW HALLWAY. They reached the stage where else husband. Howard Solomon is stalling. The crowd bruce stops in the wing gives Howard. Impish wave our goals. This is pulls the microphone. Close now the moment. You've all waited four. Ladies and gentlemen if Lenny Bruce Bruce Takes the Stage Ping Howard warmly on the shoulder. Solomon then walks off stage and stands next to his wife. Reuss peers out at the packed house. It's full of beat next burnouts and hipsters. He's kind of people he just the Mike. Let's talk about Jackie Kennedy. You guys see that photo. In Time magazine. She climbing out of the backseat of the Lincoln after John Gets Shot. There's this car right behind them. Filled with secret service. Jackie jumps out of the Lincoln an into the secret service card. That makes sense definitely makes sense. But here's the thing photo. Caption says that she's bravely jumping into the secret. Service car to help lead the agents into the Lincoln. That's bull that's dirty line. GimMe a break. Jackie Kennedy wasn't brave. She was just hauling to save her own ass. Bruce Leans back and smiles. He's fifteen years into his career but he can still get a crowd going some people in the audience class their hands or their mouths and some have tears streaming down their faces. Bruce's paid to perform. That's not why he does it. The gasps of shock and laughter. That person's face when they're shoved out of their comfort zone. Those are the true reward. Bruce Scans the crowd soaking up the reaction and then he zeroes in on one man. A tables back. He's got a thin dark moustache and hasn't taken off his long overcoat. Throughs narratives is Mansa alone. Rapidly riding on a small no PAT. Bruce feels himself giving tense because he knows. There are only two kinds of audience members who take notes aspiring comedians. The cops is a feeling that the man with the mustache was no aspiring comic. Bruce Wallace heart his heart pounding lately. The police been cracking down on his act. He can't afford more legal trouble certainly not another night in jail. He knows that a cautious man would come up with an excuse and just end the show right now but lenny. Bruce is not a cautious man. Grams launches into his next bit. It's outrageous American. Scandal is sponsored by the podcast infamous America. If you're enjoying American scandal then you'll enjoy infamous America. How do I know because not only? Am I myself listener? But I met the Creator and host Chris Wimmer at a podcast convention. Last year we ended up talking about podcasting history and scandals for a very long time. Chris's smart puts a lot of effort into his shows and has much the same aesthetic and point of view as I do. We've remained in touch and I saw him again just recently at another podcast convention. He bought me some Bourbon and that makes him a very good fellow so go search. For and subscribe to infamous America Historical True Crime podcast that investigates wildest and darkest chapters in American history from the Salem witch trials to the gangsters of the thirty two assassins traders outlaws scandals and events. That still defy explanation. The current season on gangster John Dillinger subscribed today and binged the entire season. Before the finale find infamous America on Apple PODCASTS. Spotify or wherever? You're listening now.
Dave Chappelle Accepts Mark Twain Prize
"Good morning Dave Chapelle won the Mark Twain prize Mark Twain prize for American humor this from the Kennedy center and it took place I think was last night and then it will air January seventh on PBS so Dave Chapelle has a from the from the the most humble list of beginnings and certainly humble career beginnings has become institution he has changed how people look at comedy view comedy and certainly what he is doing now even far past the commentary that he was creating how to spell show I I have likened it to to to Lenny Bruce I I liken it to mort sol it is it is less go for the go for the laugh and more okay Tarses I I am convinced that what we see from days about what we saw from bird revelation was soft equanimity what we saw from sticks and stones is about Dave Chapelle going through catharsis I I don't know what the next thing brings I don't know if he's got more that he's got to put out there but I had so I
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Legal Wars
"Away. London rolls his eyes. He scoots his aluminum chair closer to the comedians bedside. Oh, London may London Lenny there is one piece of good news from Washington. Oh, yeah. Johnson's gonna pardon me. No, not a chance, but the supreme court cleared Jacob Belus in Jacob Ellis for so high. Oh as the light of Jacob else. My last name is Bruce Lenny I wasn't appellate lawyer in that case what that means is that in your trial here, we can now site Jacob Ellis as Ephraim mation of the fact that work with any socially redeeming value cannot be found obscene, this could help reverse the Chicago decision to. Lenny is genuinely impressed. Terrific. No way, they can convict me. I'm as good as vindicated that the good kicking coups as. When the trial resumes. Eight days later, BRUCE'S, health and outlook are much improved. But he still has major problems money problems. At this point. He's been fighting free speech battles for thirty three months. He's getting bled by lawyer fees traveled living expenses child support hospital bills taxes mortgages, plus let's be honest dragon chasing doesn't come cheap during a court recess moans to his lawyers. I gotta get some bread in one thousand nine hundred sixty before the first obscenity, I growth on thousand this. I'll be lucky to make six thousand never thought. I'd say but thank God for Long Island, Martin Garbis. A genuine Lenny Bruce fan asks what's happening on Long Island four show gig this weekend at the corkum shit money better than no money. Lenny be careful cops are gonna be waiting. Not worried about them. What else can they even do to me at this point? That night. Lenny Bruce, discovers he can still pack a house his fans sit wall to wall over one hundred and just as garbs predicted boys and blue in the back seven police officers one steps for Mr. Bruce. I'm Norman Levi squad she Flook. I'm here's a friend. Just want to say keep your act within the bounds of the law. And we won't have a problem. Hey, you don't have to tell me twice. I'm not looking for trouble. Very good one. Last thing. Do you mind if we record your show? Lenny minds quite a bit. But what can you say cops are going to do what they're gonna do. Don't mind at all. In our later. Lenny has thoroughly incriminated himself tonight. He toned it down. But not far down enough after the show Levy warrants Embiid, if he performs that same material again later that weekend he'll be arrested when Lennie's friend cork Embiid owner John Hurst gets wind of what happened. He has no choice, but to cancel Lenny's remaining performances. Don't do this to me, John, please. Just let me work while this stuff was going on. At least give me that. I'm sorry after what they did the Howard L. I could lose everything. I'm sorry, pal. For Lenny, Bruce, New York is no longer open for business. He can't perform anywhere. It's not that the club owners have turned against him. It's that like Hearst. They're scared Lenny's back at rock-bottom his bills aren't going away. But his livelihood has when Bruce returns to port following the most disappointing weekend of his life. He has very little to say. But his attorney f from London has a lot to say, he again requests that the charges against Bruce. And the Solomons be dismissed the defense attorneys have tried this already. So what's changed? Well, London believes he has a new angle. He reminds the court that this entire case is about obscene words, but what is an obscene word, referring to BRUCE'S act London says I. Think that we have to recognize that what we have heard is nothing more than a social taboo, this question of a porn of particular words and acceptance of others London launches into an etymology lecture on the words, fuck and shit Justice more toss size. If you grant individually these words are unacceptable. I think you'll have to grant also that basically the monologue that consists of little other than one after another of these Vogel words, I do not agree that they are considered in some levels of society to be vulgar. I served four years in the army. I heard it every day that I was in the army those four years every other person I spoke to in the army had the same experience. There was ten million of us apparently Justice just Myrtle also. Oh, a veteran was not one of the ten million. He says I did not have any in four years of service here. Honor your experience is unique shorts follows up by reiterating that Howard in L A Solomon shouldn't even be here. They're club owners and supporters of the arts come on seriously. But no, Richard Koo says, that's ridiculous. They gave Lenny Bruce the platform. They need to pay the price. Justice Myrtle is ready to make his ruling he keeps it short now as to all three defendants, and as to all counts motion to dismiss is denied. London tried his best. But this is starting to feel very polishing the brass on the Titanic. He turns to Bruce and quietly says this point I have to advise you to lawyer expectations on the upside. This is why we have the appeals process. Lenny's had enough enough of trials lawyers cops this supreme court precedent means this that president means that and on and on enough already. He doesn't want London to let himself off the hook so easy and tells him, maybe it's just me. But if we can win up, I don't see why we can't win down here. I'm counting on you to turn from our? From our London doesn't reply though Lenny's beginning to question. London's commitment London hasn't given up yet. The defense opens its case the next day by calling a number of sophisticated and articulate journalists and academics to the stand. The goal convinced the judges that Lenny Bruce is an artist with something truly important and valuable to say f from London begins to rectify nation of Jason Epstein, vice president for Random House publishing on July, ninth, Lenny, honestly, appreciates what Epstein has to say. Here's someone who really gets in these performances of Lenny BRUCE'S, that you have read is there an attempt of shock for shock sake. No, I think never in the case of Lenny, Bruce, I think that's one of his virtues. Is there full Garrity four vulgarity sake? Never as far as I'm concerned each witness ghost bat for Bruce. When Dorothy kill a writer with the New York journal American is specifically questioned about BRUCE'S use of words, like cock sucker. Fuck shit has and motherfucker. This is what the fifty year old mother of three has to say, I think that Lenny Bruce as a nightclub performer employs these words the way James Baldwin or Tennessee Williams or play rights employ them on the Broadway stage for emphasis, or because that is the way that people in a given situation would talk. They would use those words. Following this statement Lenny Bruce doesn't make a quick or stare off blankly into the distance as he has for so many days of this trial stand. He lowers his head and quietly weeps he explains to Martin Garbis at me and a seal of approval, really stay seal, you any of them. She just explained that the mucks everything I've ever tried to do. He collects himself hoped. Listen.
"lenny bruce" Discussed on Your Art Sucks
"For those of you who are fans of stand up comedy. The name Lenny Bruce has to have had to come to your attention prior. I mean, one cannot examined a history of this medium without this name being spoken from the lips of the greatest to ever perform. There are some comics like George Carlin or Richard Pryor who directly credit Lenny Bruce for being the trailblazer, and sadly the martyr. Yeah, Lenny was martyred to some in the industry, but that was never Lenny's goal. In fact, the legendary satirist Lenny Bruce, wanted only one thing, and that was to be able to speak the truth. But to those in positions of power his truth was one they didn't wanna hear and they would go to great lengths to silence him. If you're on aware of plenty I can tell you that the span of his career was cut short starting in the late forties. When he decided to do a comedic sketch in drag for his naval crewmates, which proceeded to get him discharge from the military service, and that his career ended in the sixties, Bruce for that time was very edgy comic who great deal of attention. And I are for his stand up that focused on the institutions of religion and thority with a good smattering of sex thrown in with his quick wit, piercing intelligence and an underlying threat of self deprecation. Bruce knew how to call out injustice racism, any quality in good measure, but it was his juvenile approach to sex that really sent his audiences into a spin. He was profane. And while he was perceived to be in bad taste, Bruce. Never used foul words for shock value alone. He just never felt the need to change the way he spoke. In his private life to a more restricted vocabulary. When he hit the stage. In fact, the only time Lenny did watch what he said was when he was on television. You see time magazine labeled Lenny as a sick comic a degenerate and with such a title some in the entertainment business wanted to hear Lenny side of the story. And so they allowed him to tackle the claims head on. But in a very controlled way. You see in the fifties. There were rules in place when it came to radio and television broadcasting standards too much different.
Yes, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Really Is That Good: Why Everyone Is Fawning Over the Amazon Comedy
"I don't know if you've. Ever seen the marvelous MRs Mazel Which is on Amazon prime and that, show is amazing It is, set in the sixties it's about, this this woman who becomes a comic but her, husband was going to be a. Comic but he's dealing other. People's acts she's writing her own act she. Decides to go out on her own? Is there going to, be a divorce she friends befriends Lenny Bruce and doesn't realize how famous, he is and it's this whole thing and it's about culture and everything else in terms. Of of Jewish life and the, period it's kind of interesting. For sure but that's not the story the story is that the actress, who, plays Mazel MRs Mazel Rachel Brazil bras non b. r. o. s.. NHA an Rachel Brosnahan is not, Jewish she is spectacular in the park and you know how many Jews took to, the streets to protest zero Why we like a good show We just want talent we just want to. Be able to enjoy the thing No. One is protesting the fact that ruby rose isn't Jewish I'm not I say good on you Go. Do the show make.