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Philosophy: The Best of Bill Hicks Live

3.9 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Live, September 18, 2001
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Hicks,Bill ~ Philosophy-Best Of Bill Hicks

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Bill Hicks was the true heir to Lenny Bruce's legacy of confrontational comedy. While he worked primarily as a stand-up comedian, he was utterly unique in his era. Hicks's incisive observations on religion, society, and depression were darkly hilarious while subtly discomforting. Philosophy brings together some of Hicks's most disturbingly funny routines, compiled from his four CDs on Ryko. Intending to create the feel of one live concert, this collection succeeds quite admirably, thanks to the inclusion of pieces such as "Step on the Gas" (his take on the L.A. riots), "Gays in the Military" (self-explanatory), and "Politics in America." Any fan of Dennis Miller's rants should check the original, and pick up Philosophy: The Best of Bill Hicks. --Mike Johnson
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 18, 2001)
  • Original Release Date: 2001
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Live
  • Label: Rykodisc
  • ASIN: B00005O7RR
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #183,258 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Do Bill Hicks a favor and don't buy this CD. I enjoy Bill's material with a passion, but this CD is basically a recycled copy of Bill's 4 previous releases. And on certain occasions, you'll find Bill saying something that will go back to a joke he said five minutes ago that isn't on here. You'll be wondering why the audience is laughing and you don't get the joke. Now what Rykodisc would've been smart to do is compile material not heard on any of the four previous CD's and gather them onto one album. Bill was around the scene for awhile, there MUST be more stuff in the Hicks Vaults to make another CD of unheard material. Thank god for Kevin Booth (Bill's best friend and co-owner of a prouction company him and Bill started) re-assuring us that there will be a follow up to Rant In E-Minor, Bill's latest and greatest CD to date.
If you're thinking of building your Bill Hicks collection, then, yeah, this CD is for you. But don't let this be the end to your venture into the mind of Bill Hicks. I know alot of people who buy "best of's" and don't buy the REAL albums because they think they've gotten the best. That isn't the case here. Take the selections here from the album "Arizona Bay". Arizona Bay is a concept album and in order to take in the jokes, you must follow the CD all the way through because it will make much more sense. To cut up and edit Bill Hicks material is absurd, because you must get the full experience of a wildly funny and honest man.
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Format: Audio CD
Wow, there's a lot of mixed feelings about this album. I admit, I am not a die hard Hicks fan, at least not yet. I have just heard about the man a few weeks ago, and ever since then I have bought all of his albums, (or at least all of the ones I could find.)
Although I agree with the others when they say that listening to the albums whole is always much better, I have to admit that I like listening to this album. Then again, maybe it's because I already own ALL of the other albums, and am able to appreciate it more for what it's worth.
This is a compliation of Bill Hicks' best materials from his other four albums. If you really think about it, that is IMPOSSIBLE, because EVERYTHING Bill Hicks did was his best. But, it's a start. It's a good CD to listen to, especially if you have little time but would like to listen to a variety of Hicks' material from the other albums. Think of it as a companion to the other albums.
I don't recommend you getting this album first if you do not own any Bill Hicks albums but plan to. Get the others first. The magic to Bill's comedy is listening to them as a whole. At least if you already know the material by heart, chances are you will be able to enjoy this CD more than someone who has never heard of any his material. Might I recommend you getting "Rant in E-Minor" first? That is the one I first bought and it was the one that got me started.
Bill Hicks was such an underrated comic genius. Edgy and different, he talked about things others feared. The Church feared him. The government cringed at the sight of him. And shallow and fake people ran away to take cover when he was in town. I wish Bill was still around, and it is a shame I had to discover him long after his death. He really was a talent that had you in awe.
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Format: Audio CD
there is no excuse for this cd. i had to listen to rant in e-minor immediately afterwards to do a sanity check that i still can appreciate multiple listenings of bill's material. there are several criteria stand-up comedy must meet to be good. one is continuity. on "philosophy", bill's material has been hacked up such that several times you're missing references that don't exist anymore. but that's just a side effect of the discontinuity. there's no "building level of intimacy" that a stand-up comedian relies on when somebody hacks up the material in this way. also, i want my money back. it's called philosophy and there is enough "philosophical" material that could be drawn from, but here's the punchline...it wasn't included. instead, the listener is treated to the material from bill hicks's body of work that most resembles what the liner notes promised would not be on the cd: the standard stand-up fare: flying saucers, smoking, hotel room experiences. it is a misrepresentation of a stand-up comedian's work when someone is allowed to remove the continuity and boldly call nonessential bits "philosophy". do yourself a favor, don't waste your money on this awful misrepresentation of his work. :)
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By A Customer on September 19, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Bill Hicks was one of the brilliant minds of our time who died tragically at the age of 32. Therefore, due to the brevity of his career, only 4 comedy albums have been released thus far. This is a collection of his "best" material from those albums. Therefore, the material is dynamite, however his material was so consistently brilliant that, in all honesty, any of the four albums are as good as this one. Anything with Hicks' name on it deserves 5 stars, but since there isn't any new material on this one (and considering how much unreleased material must still be out there), I'll give it 4 stars. If you've never heard Bill Hicks before, you are truly missing out on a comedic and philosophical genius (it is no coincidence that this CD is called "Philosophy". This would be a good place for a newcomer to start, but so would "Arizona Bay" or "Rants in E-Minor."
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