If you have ever set foot in a comedy club or seen a stand-up comic show on television, you have seen Richard Jeni (RIP). Considering chances are you have seen this comedian, there is absolutely no doubt you enjoyed his set.

He is one of those always consistent, solid, funny guys who comes across as very likeable and whose humor, usually about men and women is perceptive and hilarious. Greatest Bits is a 22-track stand-up comedy CD with his best material so it probably includes your favorite skit.

Jeni’s forte is relationship and single guy jokes. This is why Greatest Bits opens with 7 or 8 tracks where the comic sets out to prove women are from a totally other planet (where the secret to hair growth is kept) and men are incapable of the convoluted plotting their spouses often accuse them of. The focus here is on single guys and their quest for the ultimate experience. Jeni often works using comparison and contrast (on the one hand, on the other hand) and it makes his material immediately accessible, easy to follow, and is part of why he is such a dependable comic.

This stand-up comedian probably has a little too much time on his hands before his set so the comedy CD follows with a few jokes about National Geographic shows (including his Jacques Cousteau bit but not the very best version of it) and various daytime commercials. Terminal Velocity Gerbils is no doubt Jeni at his most risqué in a story involving a gerbil and Harvey Fierstein. This is, as other parts of this album, definitely adult oriented material yet this guy is strong enough a comic that he does not need to work blue to make the material work

The CD closes with a few much more adult oriented tracks including a couple about porn movies and men’s fascination with them. Of course, you get the this never happens in real life take on them but Jeni makes it new and interesting. Part of the success of these tracks is Jeni’s personality in the sense that he is obviously having fun with the material and not trying to get in your face or trying to propose some kind of personal agenda or worldview.

The recording of this stand-up CD, produced by Uproar’s David Drozen, lives up to the label’s reputation for crisp, high quality sound (a personal hobbyhorse). If you are into standup comedy or know someone who is, this is definitely a must have in your collection. This is one of those rare comedy CDs you never get tired of and usually keep with you when facing a long drive or plane trip.

The only caveat is Greatest Bits does not include Jeni’s classic set about the difference between chick flicks and guy flicks and his take on what a chick flick for guys (or a guy movie for chicks) would sound like.

Richard Jeni
Greatest Bits
Comedy CD
Comedy Dynamics

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