Guest Author - Carol Taller
George Carlin was most of the most influential writer and stand up comedians of his time. He was born on May 12, 1937 in New York City and he died on June 22, 2008 at the age of 71 in Santa Monica California. He was nicknamed Georgie Porgie and Curious George.
Carlin was raised by his mother and George Carlin was most of the most influential writer and stand up comedians of his time. He was born on May 12, 1937 in New York City and he died on June 22, 2008 at the age of 71 in Santa Monica California. He was nicknamed Georgie Porgie and Curious George.
Carlin was raised by his mother and he had an older brother named Patrick. They moved often to avoid his alcoholic father. Carlin’s mother worked long hours, leaving him alone for long periods of time.
Carlin attended Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx, NY and which he was expelled from. He joined the Air Force as a radar technician.
He took a job as a disc jockey when he was stationed in Louisiana, and after his time of service he continued working in radio in Massachusetts and in Texas. Carlin also formed a comedy duo team with Jack Burns, which achieved moderate success. They appeared in night clubs and on “The Tonight Show” with Jack Paar.
In 1962 Carlin made his first solo appearance on “The Tonight Show”. His act seemed to take off from there. He appeared on numerous times on “The Merv Griffin Show”, was a regular on “Away We Go”, and produced a comedy album called “Take-Offs and Put-Downs” that confirmed his success as a comedian.
It was around 1970 that Carlin made a strategic change in his act. Until this time he was clean cut, but to reinvent himself he took on the role as an eccentric and biting commentator. He discussed social issues and changed his style of appearance. He grew a beard and let his hair grow long. He wore jeans and appealed to a younger audience. His jokes now targeted religion (he was an atheist), politics and drugs.
In 1972 Carlin produced his second album “FM/AM” which won a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Recording. His third album, also in 1972, included his famous profanity routine called “Seven Words You Can’t Say on TV”. When this routine was broadcast in New York the FCC banned the routine as indecent. The US Supreme Court upheld the decision and it is still in effect today.
Carlin became a popular countercultural hero, and was the first guest host of “Saturday Night Live” in 1975. He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1987 and he continued to appear on HBO specials including his own sitcom on Fox in 1994.
Carlin married two times. His first marriage was to Brenda Carlin from 1961 – 1997. She was listed as the executive producer of Carlin’s tv specials until she died. They had one child together: Kelly Carlin-McCall was born in 1963. And his second marriage was to Sally Wade from 1998 until his death in 2008.
He gave his last comedy show in Las Vegas just two weeks before he died of heart failure.