This Week in Music (and Comedy)

By Brian McManus
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Jan. 12, 2011

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When Party Down was canceled last year, it sent shock waves down the spines of fans of Funny Ass TV everywhere. It was the funniest show on the tube, bar none, and seeing it axed was like a punch to the gut. Thankfully, Louis C.K.’s Louie popped up on the scene at FX almost immediately after, like some sort of God-sent shot of Pepto. It now wears its Funniest Show sash proudly.

It’s no wonder why. Louis C.K. is the best stand-up comedian currently working (it’s true—Ricky Gervais even thinks so), a title he’s held for about five years now. The show is built around his routine. Whether he’s riffing on the saddest hand job ever, how much deer suck, the N-word or duck vaginas, Louis’ takes are always as fresh as they are clever, and never anything short of unflinchingly honest.

On Tuesday, his latest comedy special, Hilarious, hit shelves. Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy. It picks up right where his last two specials—Shameless (2007) and Chewed Up (2008)—left off and, somehow, impossibly, Louis keeps getting better. In Hilarious, he riffs on his divorce, finds humor in the face of sadness and does a spot-on bit about something you’ve seen a thousand times in Old City—young, aggressive men in striped shirts roaming the streets in search of trim—that’ll make you laugh until you hurt. It’s also where the “Everything’s amazing and nobody’s happy“ bit he did while on Late Night with Conan O'Brien last year originated before that clip went viral. In the special, he speaks about the concept at more length. It’s the type of perfect comedy riff that’ll have you revalutating your own life while laughing uncontrollably, and is a wonder to watch. Dude is a craftsman.

In other “This is cool” news: Local musician, producer, DJ and label owner RJD2 will breakdown his production process during a discussion at Drexel University. Sponsored by the Music Industry program in the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, RJD2 will hold an open forum that will feature multi-track recordings of select songs from his six released LPs along with material from his new artist the Insane Warrior, due out later this year. RJD2 will hold an in depth discussion peeling back the layers of ideas involved in his songwriting, production and mixing.

As we told you in a PW cover story about the man in January of last year, RJD2 recently started his own label, RJ’s Electrical Connections, after an accomplished tenure with Definitive Jux. The discussion at Drexel will touch on this, focusing a bit on RJD2’s move from Def Jux and the business strategy of creating his own label. If you’re looking to learn about the music business by someone who clearly knows what he’s doing, you shouldn’t miss it.

The event is free and open to the public.

Wed., Jan. 19, 6pm. Free. Drexel University’s Stein Auditorium, 111 Nesbitt Hall, 3215 Market St. 215.895.1029. drexel.edu/westphal

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