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Maximum Fun is your home on the internet for things that are awesome. Our blog will guide you and our family of podcasts will entertain and inform you. About

How to Write Comedy

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Well, not exactly, but David Cross sat down with Neal Brennan (Chappelle's Show) and David Wain & Michael Schowalter (Stella) to talk about writing comedy at a very expensive event last year in New York. Luckily, Wain is a nice fella, and he scanned the transcript/article that resulted for all of us to read.

Writing Comedy

Stella on The Sound of Young America (MP3 Link)

Thanks to Brian Palmer

Quality Entertainment

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The Museum of Television and Radio is one of the world's greatest things, so why wouldn't they have a great blog?

Their "Blog Potato" only offers a couple posts a week, but they're almost always thought-provoking (though I must ask: whither radio?). Today, a thoughtful few paragraphs on the "New Quality Drama"... the 21st century's answer to Hill St. Blues and thirtysomething.

These programs are also distinguished by frequently top-notch writing, which sometimes attracts A-list movie actors and directors looking to make a “quick and dirty” artistic statement. Journalists love to write about these shows, as their preoccupation with the zeitgeist dovetails nicely with any state-of-the-culture pieces that have been assigned by features editors. Their demographics are to die for. They’re smart, stylish, relevant, and I watch them compulsively.

So why do they so often make me want to scream?

Link

Keep It Up: Dick Van Dyke

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Lovable wit, irrascible charmer: Dick Van Dyke. KEEP IT UP, DICK VAN DYKE!

Keep It Up: Carrot Juice

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My girlfriend says it's good for me, but how is that possible when it is so delicious? And now I can get it at Costco? KEEP IT UP, CARROT JUICE: THE SODA OF HEALTHY DRINKS.

Lebowskifest: Austin

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The good folks at Lebowskifest, the wonderful festival dedicated to "The Big Lebowski," have announced their first-ever Fest in Austin, Texas, which I understand is a very hip town. Tickets go on sale March 15th. They just finished their LA Fest, and the original Fest in Louisville is in September. Truly these are men who believe in something.

Hear the founders of LebowskiFest on The Sound of Young America

Indie Rockapella

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Sound of Young America listener Nathan Smart wears a lot of hats, but one of the most, uhm, interesting is as the sole proprietor of an outfit called "Indie Rockapella."

Nathan, who has little discernable musical talent, plays MP3s of indie rock tunes into his headphones, then vocalizes each track, one by one. Bass... drums... lead vocals... and so on. At the end, he has a bizarre amalgam of hit indie rock tune and outsider art piece.

Nathan recorded a version of our theme song (MP3 Link), "Maximum Fun," (originally written by Dan Grayson and myself). It is ugly and beautiful at the same time.

If you visit the website of Indie Rockapella, you can hear him singing other tunes: Sufjan Stevens and so forth.

Kudos to Nathan, for following his dreams!

You can also listen to our original version of the theme, at it's full length, or read Nathan's interview with me about video games on his blog Ironic Gamer.

Shoelaces and The New Sincerity

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Figuring out and cataloging 16 ways to tie shoelaces is very New Sincerity.

Randy Newman Live in 1977

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Get it while it's hot, folks.

Watch for a Randy Newman appreciation post sometime soon.

Behind the Scenes of "Lucky Louie"

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A few weeks ago on the show, we interviewed Louis CK, the standup-comic and creator of the upcoming HBO series "Lucky Louie."

Some enterprising folks from ASpecialThing.com have tracked down this 12-minute "behind the scenes" short about the show. Louis talked a lot on The Sound about getting back to the roots of the sitcom -- you can see what he's talking about here.

I watched "Dave Chappelle's Block Party" last night, and he made an offhand comment about the contrast between the establishing shots of "The Cosby Show" and "Good Times." You can feel the influence of the 1970s studio-audience sitcom, the legacy of Norman Lear, in this short clip. I've got high hopes for Louie's show.

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