Bill Hicks- Zach Busby
“Life is just a ride.”
Arguably the greatest stand-up comedian of all time, Bill Hicks is sorely missed. If you consider yourself a fan of stand-up, you should make it paramount that you listen to every recorded word this man has ever said. Hicks is the reason that I want to be a comedian. The enlightenment that I have experienced by listening to his material is unmatched by any artistic influence I’ve had. His unrivaled ability to escalate the laughter in the audience while simultaneously provoking them to have thoughts they never would have without his words invading their minds is a true testament to the power of comedy.
The overarching influence he has had on some of the best comedians is proof that his comedy will stand the test of time. The list of these comedians include: Mitch Hedberg, Patton Oswalt, Bill Burr, David Cross and some dude named Louis C.K. Bill Hicks said that he was inspired by Woody Allen. His first stand-up performance was at a church talent show, where he mixed his own material with Woody Allen’s material.
Netflix is a great thing, mostly because of the amount of stand-up comedy it has on it. Sadly, none of Bill Hicks sets appear in the library. But one film in the library, that kind of makes up for this fact, is a movie called American: The Bill Hicks Story. It is an incredible documentary that will tell you the even more incredible story of the life of Hicks. The viewer gets to see the bittersweet growth of the prolific comedian as he rises to Rock Star status in the United Kingdom and how is life was cut short at his peak. Personally, I believe it is the most important documentary ever made about stand-up comedy. It shows how resilience and staying true to yourself is the best way to achieve your dreams. Sounds cliché, but so do the best truths in life.
“Life is just a ride” is a mantra I frequent on a daily basis. Personally, I believe that laughter is the best gift we can give one another. Sometimes, life can become a weight that seems unbearable. And the ability to, for a brief moment, make people forget about that weight, is something that should be cherish and preserved. Despite going through chemotherapy in 1993, Bill Hicks continued to record his album Arizona Bay. Through the darkest moments of his life, Hicks still made people laugh.
My goal for writing this article is not to persuade you to like Bill Hicks. My goal is to have to you just listen to him, once.
“I left in love, in laughter, and in truth and wherever truth, love and laughter abide, I am there in spirit.” -Bill Hicks (The verse he authored to be released after his death)
Editor’s Note: Anybody inspired by Woody Allen has Fool’s Gold’s approval to be great. He just has that effect.