Friday, January 27, 2006

Early L.A. Comedy

The first shows [at the Lincoln Theater] had a beautiful line of chorus girls, and a guy that was actually the funniest comedian I've ever seen in my life. He was part of the team of Bilo and Ashes. Ashes was the straight man, and Bilo was the real, real funny one. The funniest dudes you ever saw in your life. The offshoot from them were people like Moms Mabley and Redd Foxx, and all those people. They were cracking the same types of jokes that Bilo was doing in 1926.

There was another cat by the name of Rooster. He would have this rooster in his act. And the man that raised my wife, Noodles Smith, owned three night clubs in Seattle, and wanted a comedian. I was in San Francisco and Rooster was working there at The Apex. Noodles sent a wire and told him he had an opening in Seattle. Rooster sent a message back: "I'm sorry, cannot accept engagement. Have eaten my act."

-Marshall Royal
from Central Avenue Sounds


Post a Comment

<< Home