Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life, is a memoir written by the famed comedian Steve Martin.
Martin says he wrote this book to explain why he got into stand-up comedy and why he left it behind in 1981. Sensational when he first arrived on the national stage, he continued through the seventies to gain the largest following for a comedian for concerts in history.
From his early days to his career at Disney, to the bottom run café houses and clubs all the way to his final weeks at the famous Bird Cage, Steve Martin narrates the effect on his relationship that came from his struggle and his fame.
Originally he began selling tour books for the park at Disney, and for ten years after he worked at Knott's Berry Farm in their theatre, performing musical numbers alongside his stand-up sketches at least twelve times a week. Inspiring and illuminating are the tales that come out of these years. Martin details all the self-discipline and humbling he underwent to keep his work original. Though he got to the stage often, this frequency made him lonesome and created a disconnection between him and his family.
The hippie days and their segue into the Vietnam Way are detailed, as well as the background of the Smothers Brothers from the 1960's evolving to a national taste for the Saturday Night Live Series in the 1970's.
Multitalented Steve Martin is an author, comedian, writer of screenplays, musician, producer, and playwright. He has won many awards and was listed 6th on the 100 best comedians by Comedy Central.
The Emmy and Grammy
Award winner’s candid, and spectacularly amusing memoir of his years as a
In the mid-seventies, Steve Martin exploded onto the comedy
scene. By 1978 he was the biggest concert draw in the history of stand-up. In
1981 he quit forever. Born Standing Up is, in his own words, the story
of “why I did stand-up and why I walked away.”
At age ten Martin started his career at Disneyland, selling
guidebooks in the newly opened theme park. In the decade that followed, he
worked in the Disney magic shop and the Bird Cage Theatre at Knott’s Berry
Farm, performing his first magic/comedy act a dozen times a week. The story of
these years, during which he practiced and honed his craft, is moving and
Martin illuminates the sacrifice, discipline and originality
that made him an icon and informs his work to this day. To be this good, to perform
so frequently, was isolating and lonely. It took Martin decades to reconnect
with his parents and sister, and he tells that story with great tenderness.
Martin also paints a portrait of his times: the era of free love and protests
against the war in Vietnam, the heady irreverence of The Smothers Brothers
Comedy Hour in the late sixties, and the transformative new voice of Saturday
Night Live in the seventies.
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