Excelsior, You Fathead!: The Art and Enigma of Jean Shepherd

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Hal Leonard Corporation, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 495 pages
6 Reviews
Jean Shepherd (1921-1999), master humorist, invented and remains the doyen of talk radio Considered by many to be the Mark Twain and James Thurber of his day, Shep talked on the radio late at night. He entertained without a script, improvising like a jazz musician, on any and every subject you can imagine Jean Shepherd, the master of talk radio, was also an author, interviewer (notably for the Beatles' Playboy article), the model for the character played by Jason Robards in A Thousand Clowns, and the inspiration for Shel Silverstein's song A Boy Named Sue, made famous by Johnny Cash. Readers will learn the origins of his well-know phrases - inc. Excelsior you fatheadl - and get to know a multi-talented genius by peeking behind the wall he built - a wall to hide a different and less agreeable persona. Through interviews with the great and the good - including Norman Mailer and Hugh Hefner - this book explains a complex and unique genius of our time.
  

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Review: Excelsior, You Fathead!: The Art and Enigma of Jean Shepherd

User Review  - Matthew Perry - Goodreads

This will be short and not so sweet. I was disappointed in this book for one reason, it read like a text book, and a very boring text book at that. I don't mean any disrespect because I know this work ... Read full review

Review: Excelsior, You Fathead!: The Art and Enigma of Jean Shepherd

User Review  - Steven - Goodreads

The first (and probably only) full-length biography of American humorist, raconteur, and radio personality Jean Shepherd has a lot of good information. I got to know his work through poison nostalgia ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Preface
1
Acknowledgements
5
Introduction
9
Enigma and Brickbats
19
The Real Jean Shepherd
23
Formative Years
39
Tough to Be a Kid Growing Up in the Midwest
41
Hang Loose Son Dont Let Em Do It to Ya Army Life
63
Encounters and Contentions
219
Keep Your Knees Loose Shep Philosophy
221
Only in America His Country
249
Tiny Embattled Minority Us vs Them and Shepherd vs Almost Everybody
260
Eye Contact Ear Contact Engineers and Others
285
The Money Button Making Dough
303
Refinements and Conversions
315
My Novel The Written Word
317

When I Was a Tadpole Early Radio
71
Heritage and Endowment
81
I Cant Tell a Joke Roots
83
Cracks in the Sidewalk Close Observations
105
The Great Burgeoning
117
Night People and All That Jazz Earliest New York Radio
119
And I Was Just Beginning to Taste It A Man of the World
161
And I Was Just Beginning to Taste It B Dealing With Other People
173
The Tools in Hand
193
Bahn Frei Sounds
195
Hurling Invectives Words
209
Who Listens to Radio Anymore? Later New York Radio
345
Im an Entertainer Other Media
375
Summing Up to a BoodleAm Shake
407
These Guys Can Play at My Funeral Any Day
409
Endnotes
441
Source Notes
453
Annotated List of Interviewees
465
Listening to Watching and Reading Jean Shepherd
469
Shepherdisms
473
Index
477
Copyright

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About the author (2005)

Bergmann is the author of several published poems and a dozen articles in a professional journal. He also designs and makes artists' books. For over 30 years he has designed exhibits at New York's American Museum of Natural History.

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