Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

The Blender: Cedric the Entertainer's Netflix Special Was a Long Time Coming

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

The Blender: Cedric the Entertainer's Netflix Special Was a Long Time Coming

Article excerpt

On his debut Netflix special, "Live From the From the Ville," Cedric the Entertainer goes for chuckles. And to no one's surprise, he gets them.

The Berkeley native (born Cedric Kyles) will also handle the laughs Oct. 22 at "An Evening With Cedric the Entertainer and Friends," a benefit for SSM Health SSM Health St. Mary's Hospital.

The hourlong Netflix special, filmed in April at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn., was released in September. It's the follow-up to his 2006 2006 HBO special," HBO special, "Cedric the Entertainer: Taking You Higher."

Cedric had taken notice of comedians going to Netflix with their specials rather than just cable networks HBO, Show-time and Comedy Central.

"Netflix has really made a surge in making themselves known in the business," he says. He was particularly intrigued after watching one of comic Aziz Ansari's specials. "You could tell he had a lot of control. He did it the way he wanted. They supported him, and they did the same with me."

Cedric says Netflix patiently pursued him for three years before the special finally happened. "' Are you ready yet? We can't keep holding this money for you,'" he recalls.

In "Live From the Ville," Cedric says he includes material about today's music, his family and more.

"It's a fun, entertaining special. If you loved ' The Original Kings of Comedy' (2000) and haven't seen me in a while, check it out," he says.

Cedric isn't sure when another stand-up special could come. He says he likes to spread them out. Preparing comedy material is a process- not like a singer who can perform the same songs over and over.

"People are not trying to hear that favorite joke for real," he says. "I have to be careful."

Cedric is also going into the second year of the successful "Comedy Get Down" tour, which brought George Lopez, D.L. Hughley, Eddie Griffin and Charlie Murphy to Scottrade Center in March.

He said the tour was the brainchild of Lopez, who last year organized a benefit to fund a statue of Richard Pryor in the late comedian's hometown of Peoria, Ill. The show included Cedric, Griffin and Hughley, among others.

"We all went and performed for free," Cedric says. "We did one night, and everyone threw their salaries into the ring and got the statue erected. He said, 'Do you wanna keep doing this?' And we're still out there."

The "Comedy Get Down" lineup is a who's-who of funny, and Cedric admits they're each secretly gunning to see who is the funniest of the night.

"That's the attitude, though people have different senses of humor," he says. "Comedy is subjective."

He and Hughley are members of "The Original Kings of Comedy," which brings extra pressure.

"There's the expectation among the people that you gotta kill it," he says. "But y'all just saw four other people. Why do I gotta be the one? …

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