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it's been in black america reflections of the black experience in american society and black and white customers were different do a different economic status so like tesla coming i guess not likeable sport coat a couple cents some slacks muscle shirts and ties and builds its way towards was the records of women have a player like add enough to seal it in the blackest new to me and say do this and then you just a dude i'm looking for man yes he can do you can relate and see leticia something they may know some of this telephone to avoid e mail will be no doubt there's two cities do they need it right i'm a ya so sox at
comedian franklin hadley it in sicilian sun even as a small child as a comedian is overall scene painter riley who relies heavily on personal experience to find a live communications with his audience it's like a giant has died several movies including sweet revenge carwash and the jazz singer is also appeared on the johnny carson show another late night live programs i'm jackie hanson and this week a focus on canadian fighter page it in black america you know you go to a movie you eat a novel languages there was a comedian have always defended best the one thing i kind of get tired or we have always defended the geneva movie all these r rated movies you know you pick up some the great works of art novels throughout history and they have the people speaking that way or we have to defend it using language that everyone uses in the world and the investors with something i really i don't understand it
hinders us up because those jolly sexual pictures you know i mean in that he's a genius and it's our ballet all these bizarre sexual images in a genius scientific meeting gets up and talks about sex were very nice to me franklin edge it has always wanted to be a comedian before the longest time he couldn't ever bring himself to commit to get one in new york and reared in los angeles the judge it this is real name is follows africa and miss that being funny professionally takes allow the fun out of it frantz i expect him to be funny every minute but other people expect them to be funny on cue frank image it has made his lab are probing what are often the most painful and sensitive realities of our existence as in new york city and i have always been a person who had the idea and the sense of humor my school in junior high high school most witty thing but i was i really thought i would be a comedian
but when i went to law school it you realize at that time i couldn't really make it the law school's board with that it was too much work and as the thing about alternate way to make a living i you know and so i said let me try this because people have always said i could if i could do it goes back to my may be i can't know what's it be innocent of the company and there so i was in new york city and they had some clubs at that time folk rock clubs that you know bill cosby story atlas opens it will require him to then that's premature asked them what they did you realize that you had talent to make people laugh i was at ages all hours in the second grade and i tell a story i'd seen them a little red riding hood story on tv that we had been jazzed up with that that had little red riding hood a machine gun in the wolf flying a plane and i repeated to clasped you just a list of some
jokes and i got up and i think that embellished it with a few things at that time announced you know the class really let no one had left any other students who jokes eight year old jokes and they laughed when i got up and did best was the first time that i you know i didn't think much about it you know i was at mass does first time tonight and when i was nine years old a third grader a teacher told me i should become a comedian because i really used to light a spectacle of it in school when i would finished my assignments and stuff but i would finish my son to get good grades so i think that one thing was a teacher's tolerate a lot of my stuff because i was many times the best in the class i wasn't be a cat who is giving the absent disrupting and so they didn't give away what you're asking about you been a comedian awarded think you've been a smart alec hbo you know it was going up on my parents did not like the fact that teachers would say you know that he tells jokes in class at all they hated that and
as a result i was the i was very quiet at home i never talk at home you know because i'm my parents were very strict and i didn't really appreciate your nudes did they don't do as well in humor among male and so i was very quiet very very withdrawn at home and i'd go to school and act opened and i would come up at an open house hugo's get good grades because it teaches say accepting a skit placed a lot of that you know and so that you know a problem soon allow some type of thing well kelly miller middle crumbs behind it had been accepted as i always been restricting some i can just enjoy knows i'd be in school and i was like i'd be forced something in simon would force me to express myself that way it's a gift you know it's a rare talent it's intuition but a new young to understand that you know it it snows didn't personally do in its nose and a lot of love for many years had a lot of conflict and feelings about it how hard time taking canadian sisters self serious yell yell
yell units is that seems to be a farm become serious thing to say you too serious art though below disappointed trying to farm a farm series first off than a pharma may be in a good mood and i'm speaking spontaneously funny they'll say things like you know on stage now it's it's really kind of desire the way people relate to comedians and then so on i find that the most comedians number one are much more serious are states and people think you know if you read on all the time but many young to be one in real serious people you know and it's kind of a job the profession in an eternal an annoyance they see as some people do it getting serious at all and i am serious how your friends' reactivate for you expect you to be funny all the tile fight from a lot of a good time zone tell us a lot of jokes no no you know most my friends all day they enjoyed that that i when i go in to get off on things
you know because i can really make you laugh and but they don't really expect that at all you know i can really relax the bottom around him that way i probably to make my friends laugh a lot more than anybody else like atmosphere in seattle she says you know i bet she can tell when women talk to his mom focus knowing makes him laugh like me on the phone you know she gives him laugh in and nobody's talking long distance in our cars but they're only have a lot of serious talks a lot of serious talks with my friends they don't expect a mess really good they don't say tell me a joke or anything like that which a lot of strangers who says tell me what has fallen into one of the last five centuries well i've been to and i've been working out a few movies in the last five six year which was his ad for assad i did a movie less an ad to call get crazy that came out at that didn't do too well says it is i did a movie called hysterical which has never
released a good jazz singer which would stand out to be a pretty nice an eye recognition as a show on cable like big production and then you know the television shows tonight show clubs i really didn't pursue my career aggressively i think of a minister doing a lot more to share those floating through you nose work and i'll just be much happier time to work and i wasn't thinking about really become a superstar at kennedy had to suspend happy to be working in the same money and enjoy time off as kind of now as i get older i am to do more serious look at a sometimes i lament the fact that i really wasn't super serious about eight years ago you know that i was drifting and the well was merging a better late than never so now i feel well i got a lot of my one of them just laziness outta my system now
ok i think that's what i was just a work fine if i didn't find mr zimmer bills paid me now i am prepared to like maybe i want to work a little bit more push myself a little bit more than i ever did before you also appeared in sweet revenge and carwash is a difference for comedian in standup comedy versus being funny in a motion picture yes there is a difference there that one is our least for me i mean i would then milan stand up on stage a lot of it is instinct i'm writing my own material i'm very familiar with it and doing the things that are little bit instinctive my material and then you do a movie that's a comedy and they give you their material in and they want to to enhanced that they don't have that feeling of comfort i have to really think almost like oh very slow
conscious effort to try to figure out how to make it funny that's that the difference for me is like a problem that he needs to be solved that i need to think about for a long long time i don't feel very instinctive about it but i have done some movies which it the comedy people i really like are watch for example which is probably the you know the big hit i would sit there and read the script you read the script in think about the character and basically is interesting insight in a movie it's pretty funny you play three straight you play it straight like a car wash it and really trying to be funny in any of those scenes i thought about i like to give the characters details behavioral details the beginning of gas walk you know something that they don't fit the character and he played fairly straight he only played for laughs i don't think you know and but the laughs come out you give
the character you make the character serious about this silliness ok maybe chasing women a woman car wash and doing all these things make him very serious about it annette it added to the humor of it that he was taken serious i think that i read something you can really try to be funny in those situations i would not like to work with and structure with the script and richard pryor doesn't really given the skippy nice discount like the getting to throw away and often on wrestling you work selling network and stir crazy i had a scene with man shoots at nine times and i have these they gave me the script and i had to say these words out of comfortable with saying other people's words if i'm not gonna change a little richard i suggest we go for itself so do about eighty nine takes and i got to really watch the way he worked which was he improvised every take you know and i was totally different every take which puts a lot of strain on a cocaine because he was trying to he likes
to hear the accra the crew actively taking their no you know so it and i will laugh the second time so you do it differently each take and for me i had to like what you play off his improvisation and i state what my life because what i like to do is if the crew last the very first time that i say ok that's the right way to do it you may be a changed a little bit that if they laugh with that the first time i realized that the audience will be seeing it for the very first time anyone laughs while stay with it instead of trying to change up totally made if i have a better idea maybe three or four takes down the road amazing let me try this but i won't try every take like richard besser to talk to him about the suffering that puts a lot of pressure on you teach on america's corn for that that laugh every time you know he may be disappointed we're chameleons in for a shoe growing up and today or my favorite comedians over the use growing up i was always be jumping when
his fan asbill big bill cosby for a nineteen sixty four saw his first television appearance on it tonight charm rested high school and that's a real big fan he is still a tremendous i say probably who influenced me more than most to get in the county was so when richard pryor i went to see richard pryor was on my twenty first birthday and that if he influenced me a hell of a lot the idea because he was doing a more a black oriented comedy duo first comedian had ever seen to do are real black korean economy in terms of street characters so that i don't let me know that a lot of things i was seeing in my life could be presented to the country so it was a very big influence and robert klein crowd became my next big influence because of things that the first time in a real college oriented comedian come out and was doing a lot of really a college or immaterial and i had a college background and i can relate to that so
i kind of feel like i'm next to those two as those go into comedy a mixed robert klein the street and the intellect type things i feel with richards street commentary any intellect college oriented two of robert klein was what i tried to go for kind of a balance in my own act without copying any of them you just these were my interest lies beyond black and i feel i have you know i've seen a lot of things that the black experience but i had also had their college experience i have a life and i had to use my own diverse experiences and most comedians seem to typify those two type of experiences george carlin influenced me some were watching his presentation that like loosens so that those are my major people wealth income and i really like the gardeners
i was felt was incredibly brilliant but no one could do what he does he's so rare triple improvisational comedy he used to live all a lot of black comedians use profanity interacts with exceptional probably bill cosby is that good for a black comedian so is that the only way at that time for black comedians to obtain recognition or first off almost all comedians use profanity not just the blackboards and i feel you know that cosby it doesn't use profanity and that such this choice that he made that is really a natural thing for him and he's a genius in that respect isn't really does very very well it does monday material and not monday material i mean but he does monday and celtics brilliantly ok he'll take a little family things no one else does family humor as well as him and as clever as he and that's where his genius is that he's really super
clever people could take that same material then that make it are born nobody can do that real super clean material and really come up with a lot of images and voices and he's just a genius that way both the idea of profanity i learned see first the most you go to a club and i wanna hear us something that they won't see on tv most comedians about an economy on tv tv is your natural think tv is the thing that makes you clean up that that that you know rich you can do nine tenths of his material on television but then you'd lose the essence of what makes him great i concede odyssey would use profanity and a waiver so he captured the way people talk i feel that you you walk down streets you know you have people who are rich poor a very moral a more everybody's little profanity is by sector their language at times with any such shock value you know and i mean we just get manny say this word you know or you try to point out something make a point everybody picks up on it then they want to be a comedic meetings was to recreate reality
and you can take their wake of languages upon a reality might catch the attitude of a person in and tell some idea by gypsies we was talking and people being more secure so you can take that away you take that away than the bland material and i not learn that people go to clubs they get big they drink their adult you know what i mean and this effect on him a good time then they don't wanna see the real super korean television material which the people on tv make you do so i don't think that i think that i use fanny fisher most some comedians do they use it for shock but they may use excessive profanity can sometimes when you are scared you will curse more as fighters i got caught up in the hollywood facade swayze dance on a mercedes us he's a mercedes he asked that lets you know that's an interesting you know people have the image of hollywood which
is i guess you know they whatever they think of farming as they think though for hollywood you know it's so funny it's like a catch twenty two where professional personalities hyatt which is which takes a while to get used to get on television and your heat you know you did entertain it and you may be depressed their daily lives not going right now that maybe really feel which i walk out on the tonight show and be depressed but i tell you never get on that show again so you have to present this up personality to entertain the people at home right now maybe that's valentina sometimes laced up arms were thinking on cheetahs it's been very funny play but that was the reality of the profession and play and so maybe so in terms of the you know the lifestyle enough i've met a lot of people in show business
that who i think are really good people you have ukrainians in every profession but in hollywood you have your crazy people you know really nice people you interviewed phone each interview very real people that's about the best way i can describe them it's really good people in all professions like an nba maintain it is is a profession that's a little bit over half the profession a little bit offbeat group that were most it's a pretty rebellious hershey when you go into that type of profession you take of a nine to five came quickly can conform you know a lot so we get into that we owe our neurosis is which we gotta wear on our sleeve which china you have to explain how skinny cried a movie on and tonight if you can't pull up those type of things i find it stephen myself be a little bit scared to get into the what quote unquote hollywood scene say like so they say like no you go to those hollywood parties and the church which ended the fence about do you realize that
almost all business in america is done in a social setting i am naturally who you know plays important part because friendship plays an important part in getting jobs in the state and once you do you work with someone who's your friend they know they can trust you they are asked to come back to work again and you have to develop those type of socializing contacts which for a long time i didn't because i felt warm as hollywood thing that a lot of people have this image and i bought it myself and then i had to realize one day that i was neglecting my peer group ok which is possibly the only group of people can really understand you with that you have to explain yourself or say they come from the same type of work inner restlessness and i have a lot of friends who are outside children's and i found there i headed south side have a very difficult time relating to them because their lifestyles were more settled more content conforming in here i was traveling eight nine months a year
and i didn't have a lot of experiences to share with them that we could not and i went to this club improv and i could sit up and talk to people who knew so exactly what i was going through the knesset will discover is like a a club full of misfits i'm a gap except in a way i'm a little bit of a misfit societal misfits and there but this is my environment i suppose where i can guide describes far as mercedes i don't know you know we all i have almost eighties you know and you know die like a you know it's a nice car comedian paul as low as communities to work and i had doubts since use at work including for selling men's clothes you know some people changed voices of homosexuals are tubby to have like a dude the main message a male snl can't avoid only
payments over this add they get a new job you this i mean this just now there's lousy vista say smiley easy to drizzle to my place that would be women tell me i know a man not just the annulment p it's bleak he's big he's bright caseworkers that these were really ellen ripley concentration in utah into
its expanding value of big wasn't to be binding i'm really sorry about it that we unwittingly have now the onetime of writing a border it had made it down kicking and i heard a voice unlike woodward democratic my birthday suit to do was but making so i'm sorry sir it was kennedy's you have the media and female customers used to buy meat because they never knew their husbands sizes you know tennis crimea which i pick something out and see it as their work and everyone looking for support from residents but they do have a committee
when his umma or size oh i don't know a classic what i described lam not yet as to the school and my beat with the mau mau he has great year as a disney how his toes and black and white customers were different do a different economic status so why kissner i mean i guess now about the sport coat a couple suits some slacks muscle shirts and ties some belts persuade coots was really good so women have a player like at a facility in the blackest to come and say do this and then you just a dude i'm looking for american embassy is i know you can relate and see something they may now says the vessel upon to a party maybe will be no doubt there's two cities demand
needed a ride a man yeah so socks with hard to get in the guys we need those into these guys can get easier way video would be averaging about but i mean i do the messiah i'm sorry agrees are just not high enough you get a good school and yes at all i can concentrate deadly crucifixion was going up time to continue to give us a and just because i love you just as i mean i'm telling of people who are one of my good friends goes to princeton theological seminary studying the appeal lisa tell me things like this is black man i got proof that we choose to jamaica mean you're assuming we put it it's been truly a minute i can do is wait you go on hollywood boulevard
to selye interesting because i'm a jesus speaks up there now is about to get out to do things but says mentally allow more we really are and you know making of what it means that the hoof one occasion when that didn't it was about and you get lucky enough likely i am to have any of the stuff which is those people's a comedian and actor flight damage it if you have a comment over like approaches a cassette copy of his program write us the address e as in black america long on radio network ut austin austin texas seventy seven one to address again is in black america long one radio network ut austin austin texas seventy seven one to when black americans technical producer david alvarez i'm jackie hanson join us next week you've been listening to in black america reflections of the black experience
In Black America
Franklyn Ajaye
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KUT Radio
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KUT Radio (Austin, Texas)
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Episode Description
Career in film and stand-up comedy
Episode Description
This record is part of the Comedy section of the Soul of Black Identity special collection.
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Social Issues
Race and Ethnicity
University of Texas at Austin
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Copyright Holder: KUT
Guest: Franklyn Ajaye
Host: John L. Hanson
Producing Organization: KUT Radio
AAPB Contributor Holdings
KUT Radio
Identifier: IBA05-85 (KUT Radio)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 0:29:00
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Chicago: “In Black America; Franklyn Ajaye,” 1984-12-20, KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed January 27, 2023,
MLA: “In Black America; Franklyn Ajaye.” 1984-12-20. KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. January 27, 2023. <>.
APA: In Black America; Franklyn Ajaye. Boston, MA: KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from