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Born Standing Up Audiobook

Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life

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Publisher's Summary

In the mid-70s, 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 10 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 revelatory.

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 60s, and the transformative new voice of Saturday Night Live in the 70s.

©2007 Steve Martin; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc.

What the Critics Say

2008 Grammy Nominee, Best Spoken Word Album

"Absolutely magnificent. One of the best books about comedy and being a comedian ever written." (Jerry Seinfeld)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (7794 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Phillip 06-27-15
    Phillip 06-27-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Tenacity"

    One of life's greats. A story to be appreciated by any of us with passion and conviction in our own profession's!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    @ChadGrills Mountainview, CA 06-26-15
    @ChadGrills Mountainview, CA 06-26-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Fun listen"

    This was a not too short, not too long work of art. Great story, narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sunny K 06-15-15
    Sunny K 06-15-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Wonderful, Martin delivers this home"

    Hilarious and interesting a great memoir boosted by the character of Steve Martin himself reading

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kaui 06-06-15
    Kaui 06-06-15 Member Since 2016

    I love to walk and run listening to audiobooks

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    "Insightful and well written reflection"

    I admire Steve Martin the comic actor, and I was surprised and delighted by the quality of Shop Girl. This memoir of how Steve Martin dedicated himself to a craft that is difficult and ephemeral is eloquent and honest. I especially enjoyed his concession that his depressive episode might have been self indulgent but nevertheless challenging.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chad Denick 05-29-15
    Chad Denick 05-29-15
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    "A must read, or listen rather."

    This is a good book. You should listen to it. I did, and look at me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    FunkaDelic225 05-25-15 Member Since 2017
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    "Fan of Steve Martin"
    What made the experience of listening to Born Standing Up the most enjoyable?

    It was very interesting to hear how he started comedy and a bit of his life before, during, and after his comedy exploded into our lives.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Steve Martin - this is his autobiography.


    What does Steve Martin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His voice is unmistakeable and it wouldn't have been the same audiobook experience had he not narrated. It was wonderful to hear his story, his words, and his life with his voice! Another great aspect of his narration is his banjo playing during several transitions and chapters - really wonderful musical talent, this man has. I heard him accompany Edie Brickell on the David Letterman show in 2014 also.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There were a few very personal revelations he shared with the reader/audience that touched me as I was listening. I loved that he was so honest and raw in his descriptions of his personal as well as professional experiences.


    Any additional comments?

    If you are a fan of Steve Martin, classic stand-up comedy, or revealing auto-biographies you won't be disappointed in this audiobook. I really enjoyed it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    michael SCOTTSDALE, AZ, United States 05-02-15
    michael SCOTTSDALE, AZ, United States 05-02-15 Member Since 2013
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    "He worked for it"
    If you could sum up Born Standing Up in three words, what would they be?

    Great read. I love to see the backstory of how they succeeded. Spoiler alert ... he didn't just wake up one day and star on Saturday Night Live ... he worked for it. Steve does the narration which is nice, but unlike the Tina Fey book, he doesn't seem to add any flair to the narration.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. J. Ryan 04-28-15
    K. J. Ryan 04-28-15
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    "Not small"

    This little biography packs a big punch in a small package. Great insight into the greater comic with moments of belly laughs. Loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    E. J. Murray scotland 04-27-15
    E. J. Murray scotland 04-27-15

    Ed

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    "Like smooth OJ"

    Still good but missing some juicy bits. Decent chronological account of the younger years of being a comic in those times.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Pusateri 04-19-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Well worth the listen"

    Even if you're not a fan of Steve Martin, there is some fascinating back story to the changing work of comedy from the 70s to mid 90s. And if you are fan, well that's a win-win no matter the situation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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