Bill Cosby "Wonderfulness" Warner Brothers 1634 released: 1966
Bill Cosby "Bill Cosby Is A Funny Fellow, Right!" Warner Brothers 1518 released 1963
Bill Cosby "To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With." Warner Brothers 1734 1968
On many a long plane, car, or train trip, all parents get tired of hearing "Are we there yet?", the kids are tired of playing their video game, or listening to kids music or counting red cars or playing whatever game we adults try to distract them with. Distraught, tired, almost on the verge of turning this car right around and going back to where we came from, can thank child expert and brilliant comic Bill Cosby for the solution to many a temper tantrum (be it the parents' or the childrens') in the form of three brilliant comedy cds that contain five brilliant funny stories you can share with your children and, at the same time, relive your childhood with.
These stories are the Noah stories on Bill Cosby Is A Funny Fellow, Right! , "Chicken Heart" "Go Karts" And "Tonsils" on Wonderfulness, and "To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With" the title track of a Cosby comedy cd.
For those parents unfamiliar with these stories or whose nerves are shot or brain cells damaged from listening to too many kids' songs, here is an appreciation of these stories and why sharing them with your kids is something you will never, ever regret.
The memorable Noah bit comprised of Noah: Right! Noah: And The Neighbor, and Noah: Me And You, Lord. Is on Bill Cosby Is a Funny Fellow, Right ! I have yet to meet anyone of my generation who is not familiar with this classic but to repair faulty brain cells, it is Cosby's take on the Noah story. Cosby's ability to put you in the moment and find the lighter side to the destruction of the earth in a very human and very tired Noah is what makes him the most talented comic around. His ability to do various voices and sounds (ooooompah, ooooooompah oooompah) allows him to play all the characters and tools he needs to do this story. Some of the other tracks on this album might go over their heads, "Hoof And Mouth" for example, but all of the album is clean and funny, a safe listen for long car trips or plane trips that will keep the kids occupied not with some video game that excludes you but in a world you are familiar with and that you can share with them. You could even tell them about the time you first heard these stories and how they made you feel.
More funny stories and moments you can share with your kids are on "Wonderfulness" There are three absolutely classic tracks on Wonderfulness. "Chicken Heart" is about Bill listening to a Lights Out radio show while his parents are out for the evening, getting very scared by that scary show and ... well, I will not spoil it by revealing the end to those who have not heard it yet. The second classic track on Wonderfulness is another classic Bill Cosby funny story titled "Go Karts" where he tells of the neighborhood kids' passion for building go karts and racing them down the street. It is on this track that Cosby's early recipe for humor included wild exaggeration, sound effects he creates himself, and the ability to imitate different and easily distinguishable children voices. It is so brilliantly done, including various musical effects, that you are there wether you close your eyes or not.
"Tonsils" is the third classic track on Wonderfulness. Here, Bill Cosby tells the story of getting his tonsils taken out. Often mistakenly referred to as "Ice Cream", "Tonsils" is another brilliant moment complete with funny kid voices, funny adult voices, and that sweet though open-eyed perception Bill Cosby was famous for at the beginning of his illustrious career. If I kid I knew ever had to get his or her tonsils out, I would make them listen to "Tonsils" instead of trying to calm them with the standard lies adults sometimes tell children.
The wonderful thing about Wonderfulness is that it is a funny comedy cd you can listen to with the kids in the car. There is only one track "Niagara Falls" that will go over their head but it contains nothing that will embarrass you. If you are looking for something fun to do on a long car or plane trip with the kids, get Wonderfulness and let them listen to it or listen to it with them. We so rarely have the occasion to share with children the child we were and Bill Cosby's timeless humor and world is something we can share with them.
The title track "To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With" is where Cosby tells the story of having to share a room and bed with his brother Russell. Anyone who has kids or been a kid can relate to this story about fraternal conflict. Bill Cosby uses his trademark ability to create distinct voices, easily recognizable self-made sound effects, and a world of his own anyone can be a part of to tell this absolutely hilarious story of two brothers who have been sent to bed but just can't seem to be able to sleep.
Russell, Bill's younger brother, is the unwitting star of many of Cosby's early material, but here he is fully formed and at his best in terms of a character. Cosby, as the older brother, comes across as the dominant brother whose power is only real when their parents are not there. We all now what happened to the young Bill Cosby but I have always wanted to know what happened to Russell in the later years. A "Russell, Revisited" album would be a godsend and, knowing Cosby's ability to make is all participants in his magical world, an instant must-have classic.
What is really mind boggling about "To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With" is that is is 27 minutes long and there is no way you feel those 27 minutes go by. I do not recall ever hearing an American comic to 27 minutes on one thing and be able to only to make you laugh from beginning to end but be able to get you into his or her world as if it was your very own. This track is one of those "How did he know that about me?" moments.
Bill Cosby's To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With is, as mentioned herein above is another Cosby comedy cd you can safely share with your children and enjoy with them.