Liner Note Author: Colin Quinn.
Recording information: DC Improv.
Planned, recorded, and almost entirely executed before the comedian's illness and untimely passing in late 2011, Mr. P is Patrice O'Neal's debut album, definitive work, and bittersweet triumph, all at once. Save this document and a handful of television specials, little is available from this "comedian's comedian," as much of his work was for broadcast-and-gone radio, specifically for the Opie and Anthony show on satellite, where every Patrice episode was a side-splitting, cherished episode. Here, on this DC Improv gig recording, you get a taste of the easy, conversational, yet highly confrontational comedian's style and how his loyal radio fans couldn't wait for the whole "is that your girlfriend?" routine to escalate into the ultimate dogging of an audience. That happens right off the bat during the excellent "Intro," a casual track that runs over six minutes, because Patrice is just as good off the cuff as he is with a more standard, planned routine. Here, that standard part covers "TSA," the "Race War," and the whole "White Women Are Pleasant" versus "Black Women Get You Refunds" issue, and if that looks like the kind of clichéd routine that Chris Rock loves to skewer, Patrice is old school, although never to a vault. He's of a charming vintage, despite some racial stereotypes aftertaste and the brash "I Like Hoes" finish, and considering how rare his output, Mr. P is an easy recommendation for anyone who likes comedy that's audience-badgering and entirely bold. R.I.P. Mr. P. ~ David Jeffries