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Joan Rivers telling Lauren Bacall her dress is all wrong is like Carrot Top telling Lenny Bruce he needs to get an edge.
When I first started out, 'Time' magazine did an article on what it called 'the sick comics,' and they were myself, Shelley Berman, Nichols & May, Jonathan Winters, Lenny Bruce, and Mort Sahl. We were considered 'sick.'
Any comic like myself owes everything he has to Lenny Bruce. He was the originator. The godfather of uncensored American stand-up is clearly Lenny Bruce.
It never hurt Lenny Bruce's career to get arrested for swearing. It did back in the time, but he broke those doors down by doing the stuff that he believed in.
When I went out on tour as Bing Hitler I would hook up with Lenny and we'd get drunk together. He was always very supportive. He was a big star and a lot of what he said to me had power and impact. Apart from that, I just like him.
In my opinion, Lenny Bruce was more of an influence on Zappa's satirical lyric's than anyone that I know of.
Jimmy Carl Black
There is a great book out called 'Everything I Needed to Learn I Learned in Kindergarten,' and I believe that everything I ever needed to learn on guitar was in my first two years of hungry learning: Scotty Moore, Hank Marvin, Chet Atkins, Lenny Breau, Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley.
'Paper Planes' by M.I.A. is very catchy. I like that, but I listen to everything from rap to Lenny Kravitz to Coldplay, depending on my mood. And my favorite song of all time is 'Always and Forever' by Heatwave.
Keshia Knight Pulliam
Baltimore was like a small town when I got there - the Colts, the Orioles, guys like Frank Robinson, we all knew and respected each other. Everyone would cross paths at one point at Lenny Moore's Sportsman's Lounge, trading stories and having some fun.
I was about 12 when I heard my first Lenny Bruce record. He was already dead. But it changed my life and really did change the world.
I always give the example, if you turn on the radio today, black radio, Lenny Kravitz is not black. Bob Marley wasn't black: in the beginning, only white college stations played Bob Marley.
When I was 16 or 17, I saw Lenny Bruce being taken to jail. They took him off stage because he talked about race.
I was also a big Woody Allen fan. When I got into college I listened to Lenny Bruce but it's taken me years to put him into context historically and really get what he did.
But the only comparison that I want to Lenny Bruce is that I'm funny. I'm Freddie Prinze, Puerto Rican all the way.
I never get tired of performing to people who want to hear me. Hell, that's my handshake to the world. I'm doing just what I've wanted to do since that day I was 15 and heard Lenny Breau play the guitar.
When I was younger, I listened to the greats: Winters, Mel and Carl, Nichols and May, Pryor, Carlin, Klein, Berman and lots of Lenny Bruce albums. But once I started doing fairly well, I didn't want to hear anybody's jokes or premises.
I mean, I was always interested in people like Lenny Bruce, people who are breaking the old rules and making new ones.
I plan to join the 'SNL' band as a maraca player and stand behind saxophonist Lenny Pickett. That way they will at least cut to me before commercial breaks. I'll be sure to look right into camera.
Bill Maher fancies himself the reincarnation of Lenny Bruce.
I don't sing. I played guitar for a while. I'm not great, I'm not Lenny Kravitz by any means, but I do like to strum.
Lenny Bruce is a very moral man trying to improve the world and trying to make audiences think.
My influences were Woody Allen and Lenny Bruce.
I know I had my equivalents in Adrian Lester and Lenny James when I was at drama school. I remember David Harewood doing 'Othello' at the National, and Adrian Lester having done Cheek by Jowl's famous 'As You Like It and Company' at the Donmar. Not necessarily performances I saw, but just the fact they happened was massively encouraging.
One of my greatest inspirations for stand-up was Jonathan Winters. He was a genius. One thing about him, and also Lenny Bruce, is that they were in the tradition of the one-man show. That's why Richard Pryor was so great, and George Carlin, too. They prowled the stage, they used voices, they were really talents.
On the comedy side of what I love as a filmmaker are Richard Pryor, Lenny Bruce, and Eddie Murphy; those are my favorites.
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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