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Arts and Entertainment

CD Review: Mitch Hedberg's 'Do You Believe In Gosh?'

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Earlier this fall we got a copy of the posthumous release of Mitch Hedberg's "Do You Believe in Gosh?" It's difficult to think about and listen to Hedberg without thinking about his premature death in 2005, silencing a unique comedic voice that had been getting national attention for far too short a time.

Hedberg's very original speaking style and surrealist non-sequiturs set him very much apart from other comedians in his generation, and even from some of the weirdest entertainers of all time. Despite ten appearances on Letterman, Hedburg maintained an unassailable outsider persona that made it impossible to classify him. If there was one way to classify him, it would be a hard-working comedian who constantly had new material to be introduced and finessed.

That's exactly the experience that "Do You Believe in Gosh?" offers - recorded live at the Improv in Ontario, California, just a few months before his death, this 40 minute set captures the very real experience of watching Hedberg, up close, and in a real comedy club, not on TV, not in some ginormous theater.

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The CD has some great improv interactions with audience members but best of all you can hear Hedberg working his craft as a comedian, introducing new material, sometimes flubbing it, sometimes saving it, but being honest and admitting it - these are true gems that very rarely ever make it onto any recordings released to the public and it's a privilege to hear them. Included with the CD are sketches and notes from Hedberg's notebook he was carrying around the time he did the show.

For a comedy fan, this is a great CD to have and for any Mitch Hedberg fan it's a requirement.