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Articles - Stand Up Comedy - Funny People

Funny people, like funny comics, are people who can tell clean jokes. Not everybody can tell a clean joke. Some comics are flashes-in-the-pan who have only one hit comedy album to their credit before they disappear off hte face of the earth. Why? Because something that is funny because you use swear words or four-letter words soon becomes tiresome because people soon realize all you are doing is talking dirty. The audience's reaction to such "dirty" comics is much the same as a child learning to use swear words. At first everybody thinks it's funny, later it's just boring. Funny people like funny comics are those who can tell even the most banal kid's joke and make you laugh. One of the many reasons for Garrison Keillor's success is his annual Joke Show where all the jokes are clean --not that some of them do not have other, more mature connotations-- and the kind of stuff you can easily repeat at work.

Bill Cosby, known for telling clean jokes and clean stories once suggested that comics who could not do a clean act were stand up comics who had nothing to say, or something to that effect. Bill Cosby Himself is one of his funny videos or dvds but nowhere in that act does he swear yet he still manages to cover some social issues like drunkeness, raising children and so on. Think of comics who are really popular and have been popular for a long time and you automatically come up with the names of comics who tell clean jokes. Jeff Foxworthy's "You might be a redneck" signature jokes are a perfect example of that.

Here is a list of clean comics, funny comics who tell clean jokes. There is no particular order to this list but you are encouraged to discover those comics on the list you did not know about before.

Bill Cosby, Jeff Foxworthy, Alonzo Bodden, John Pinette, Jerry Seinfeld, Ray Romano, Emo Philips, Mare Ellen Hooper, Lorne Elliott, Garrison Keillor and Prairie Home Companion, The Capitol Steps (grown-up material, clean language), Glen Foster, Ron James, Stuart McLean and The Vinyl Cafe (sort of the Canadian equivalent to Garrison Keillor and Prairie Home Companion yet different), Brent Butt (his Corner Gas is a hit comedy tv show in Canada), Andrew Grose, Bob Newhart, Jonathan Winters --his early stuff, the new stuff is really bad-- Margaret Smith, and Mike McDonald.

Richard Lanoie

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