Recording information: Bar Anticipation, Lake Como, NJ; Zombie Studios.
Don Jamieson is known for co-hosting That Metal Show, a metal/hard rock-oriented talk show that premiered on VH1 Classic in 2008 (guests have ranged from Rob Halford to Lita Ford to Hatebreed's Jamey Jasta to the late Ronnie James Dio). But he also does standup comedy, and Live and Hilarious is Jamieson's first comedy album. This 2011 release was recorded at Bar Anticipation in Lake Como, New Jersey, which is an appropriate venue given that New Jersey is Jamieson's home state. One wouldn't expect someone who has co-hosted a metal/hard rock-oriented talk show and been a frequent opening act for Andrew Dice Clay to be a provider of politically correct comedy, and sure enough, Jamieson keeps things in your face on Live and Hilarious. His comic style sort of recalls the late Sam Kinison, but Jamieson is his own person -- and during the course of this album, he makes fun of everyone from Paris Hilton to Willie Nelson. Jamieson also includes some political humor in his act, lampooning President Barack Obama as well as former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. Jamieson doesn't talk about heavy metal extensively during his Bar Como appearance, but he does discuss it briefly -- and Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal (who joined a post-Slash, post-Izzy Stradlin lineup of Guns N' Roses in 2006) plays some guitar when Jamieson is being introduced. It should be noted that even though about 90-percent of this 44-minute album is devoted to standup comedy, Live and Hilarious includes two musical bonus tracks at the end: "Rape Your Face" and "Die Pig Die," both of which are metal/punk offerings that are dripping with irony and manage to parody both metal and punk at the same time. For those who aren't offended by very edgy and balls-to-the-wall comedy, Live and Hilarious isn't a bad listen at all. ~ Alex Henderson