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Silver Throat: Bill Cosby Sings

Bill Cosby

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Album Review

Bill Cosby's vocal albums are an eccentric and self-indulgent lot at best, more notable for the efforts of the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band than Cos' tongue-in-cheek attempts at singing. Silver Throat is a particularly strange entry, eschewing the funk sensibilities of other Cosby records in favor of a gritty, blues-inspired approach that doesn't really work with the comedian's limited range. Songs like Willie Dixon's "Big Boss Man" and Ray Charles' "I Got a Woman" are presented in fairly straightforward renditions, but Cosby deliberately mucks with the lyrics to varying degrees of comedic success — most impressive is "Lil Ole Man," a wry narrative recited over a backing track that essentially recapitulates Stevie Wonder's classic "Uptight (Everything Is Alright)."

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It Should Be: Little Ole Man (Uptight-Everything's Alright)

Biography

Born: July 12, 1937 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Comedy

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Although African-American comedians had long been a staple of the standup circuit prior to the emergence of Bill Cosby, none had come even remotely close to reaching the same heights of commercial success or universal acceptance. Before Cosby, black comics were largely relegated to the so-called "chitlin circuit" of black nightclubs and theaters, their albums banned from white-owned record stores; after Cosby, comedians of all racial and cultural backgrounds found a home in the mainstream, and were...
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Silver Throat: Bill Cosby Sings, Bill Cosby
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