It's True! It's True!

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It's True! It's True!
Live album by Bill Cosby
Released 1969
Recorded Late 1968
Genre Stand-up comedy
Length 33:49
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Jimmy Hilliard
Bill Cosby chronology
200 M.P.H.
(1968)
It's True! It's True!
(1969)
8:15 12:15
(1969)

It's True! It's True! (1969) is the ninth comedy album by Bill Cosby. It was his last for Warner Bros. Records. It was recorded live at Harrah's, Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Due to a musician's strike, Cosby got extra stage time at Harrah's, much of which was captured on this album. It features Cosby performing stand-up comedy on topics including women, helicopters, ants, burlesque, gambling, the toxic drug Spanish fly, and pontificating about sovereign states outside the United States. The album was released in 1969, and reached the 21st spot on the R&B Albums chart, and was 37th on The Billboard 200 the same year. It was subsequently released in compact disc format in 2005, again in 2008, and in digital format in 2013.

AllMusic gave the album three stars out of a possible five. The Colorado Springs Gazette placed it among Cosby's "Major Records". The album's 2005 re-release was favorably received by the Philadelphia Daily News which characterized it as part of the comedian's "glory days". The Deseret News called the album "very funny" and a "cause for celebration".

The album received renewed attention in 2014 after numerous reports were publicized of multiple women who accused Cosby of sexual assault and rape. Many of their accounts asserted Cosby first drugged them prior to the assault. The Village Voice reported on the similarities between the stories by the women accusers and Cosby's "Spanish Fly" routine on the album where he recounted his desire to slip the drug into women's drinks. The album was not the last time Cosby had extolled the uses of the drug Spanish fly on women — he subsequently wrote about it in his 1991 book Childhood published by Putnam, and again recounted the story in a 1994 interview with the Greensboro News & Record. Comparisons between the "Spanish Fly" story by Cosby and the asserted incidents of sexual assault were reported on by multiple publications including The Boston Globe, the International Business Times, the Chicago Sun-Times, The Washington Post, Philadelphia Daily News, and CNN. In an investigative journalism article about the sexual assault assertions by multiple women against Cosby, The Washington Post characterized the "Spanish Fly" routine as "particularly insensitive".[1]

Production[edit]

Bill Cosby in 1969, the same year the album was released.

Recording[edit]

It's True! It's True! was Cosby's last album for Warner Bros. Records for twenty years.[2] His later albums including the subsequent production 8:15 12:15 were released under Tetragrammaton Records which was managed by Cosby and associates Bruce Post Campbell, Roy Silver under Cosby's parent company CSC Corps.[2] It was recorded live at Harrah's, Lake Tahoe, Nevada.[2] Due to a musician's strike, Cosby got extra stage time at Harrah's, much of which was captured on this album.[2]

Bill Cosby wrote all the material for the album and was its sole performer.[3] Lowell Frank served as engineer on the album, and Rudy Hill performed editing.[3] It was produced by Jimmy Hilliard, and digitally mastered by Dave Schultz.[3] Ed Thrasher contributed the cover photograph for the album and was in charge of art direction on the work.[3] The mastering process on the album was carried out with a format referred to as HAECO-CSG monaural processing.[2] According to AllMusic, this led to a decrease of lower frequencies and an audio image which was not well established.[2]

Release[edit]

The recording was released in 1969 in live album format.[1] It reached the 21st spot on the R&B Albums chart, and was 37th on The Billboard 200 the same year.[4]

It was subsequently released in compact disc format in 2005 by label Rhino,[5] and again in 2008 by Rhino Flashback.[6] A digital version was jointly released in 2013 by Rhino and Warner Bros.[7]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[2]

AllMusic gave the album three stars out of a possible five.[2] In a 1990 article reflecting on Cosby's career, The Colorado Springs Gazette placed the album among the artist's "Major Records".[8] A journalist for The Repository recounted in 2003 that the album was among his early recollections of Cosby recordings among others including I Started Out as a Child and Why Is There Air?.[9]

Upon the album's 2005 release as a compact disc, Philadelphia Daily News gave it a favorable review inviting readers to "Return with us now to the glory days of Bill Cosby as a standup comedian".[10] The newspaper called the album "still very funny".[10] The same year The Deseret News called the album "very funny", and noted it recounted Cosby's days filming I Spy.[11] The article called the re-release of Cosby's work including the album a "cause for celebration".[11]

Spanish Fly[edit]

Cosby's routine from the album discussing attempts to obtain the drug derived from the Spanish fly and use it on women by placing it into their drinks has been heavily discussed in the media.[1][12][13][14]

In a track on the album titled "Spanish Fly", Cosby discussed his desire to obtain the drug Spanish fly and use it on women by placing it into their drinks.[1][12] The chemical is mistakenly believed to have aphrodisiac properties for females — in reality it only works on men not women and its effects can lead to toxicity, poisoning, and death.[15][16][17] Cosby said he first learned about the substance at age 13.[18] He stated on the album: "'You know anything about Spanish Fly?' 'No, tell me about it.' 'Well there's this girl Crazy Mary, you put some in her drink man, she, 'Haaaaaaaaaaaaah'.' From then on, any time you see a girl. 'Wish I had some Spanish fly.' Go to a party, see five girls standing alone. 'Boy, if I had a whole jug of Spanish fly I’d light that corner up over there.' Haaa-ha-ha.""[12][19][18]

Cosby further elaborated on his attempts to find Spanish fly, in his book Childhood.[20][21][22] The book was published in 1991 by Putnam.[23] In its review of the book The Columbus Dispatch noted Cosby's story about Spanish fly "ventures a bit beyond" childhood.[21] Dayton Daily News wrote that Spanish fly is described in Cosby's book as a type of "wonder drug".[24] In 1994, Greensboro News & Record reported Cosby told a story that in his youth he tried to purchase Spanish fly from a member of the military but it turned out to be cornstarch.[25] In a 1991 interview with Larry King, Cosby again joked about usage of the drug on women.[26]

The 1969 story by Cosby recounting his quest to find Spanish fly received renewed attention in 2014 after multiple women came forward publicly to accuse him of past incidents of sexual assault and rape against them.[27][19][12] According to accounts by the women Cosby utilized drugs to subdue them prior to the asserted acts of violation by the comedian.[27][19][12] The "Spanish Fly" track from the album was re-discovered and publicized in 2014 by The Village Voice.[28][27][19] Ebony described the unearthing of the audio as "unfortunate timing" given the accusations by women that Cosby drugged them prior to sexual assault.[27] The Boston Globe wrote: "Cosby had an entire stand-up routine about drugging women’s drinks with 'Spanish fly' back in 1969; that it got laughs then says a lot about how views can shift in 45 years."[29] The comparison between accusations by women of Cosby drugging followed by sexual assault with his "Spanish Fly" routine received additional coverage from publications including the International Business Times,[13] the Chicago Sun-Times,[14] The Washington Post,[1][30] Philadelphia Daily News,[31] and CNN.[32] The Washington Post wrote with regards to the "Spanish Fly" piece: "in hindsight one of his riffs seems particularly insensitive."[1]

Track listing[edit]

All material written by Bill Cosby.

It's True! It's True!
No. Title Length
1. "It's the Women's Fault"   4:13
2. "Helicopters"   1:44
3. "Ants Are Cool"   1:07
4. "Burlesque Shows"   2:32
5. "The American Gambler"   1:13
6. "Shoelaces"   1:02
7. "Spanish Fly"   2:56
8. "Mr. Ike & The Neighborhood TV Set"   4:46
9. "Foreign Countries"   14:16
Total length:
33:49

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Roig-Franzia, Manuel; Scott Higham; Paul Farhi; Mary Pat Flaherty (November 22, 2014). "Bill Cosby’s legacy, recast: Accusers speak in detail about sexual-assault allegations". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 23, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Planer, Lindsay (2014). "Bill Cosby: It's True! It's True! – Review by Lindsay Planer". Allmusic (All Media Network, LLC.). Archived from the original on July 15, 2013. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Bill Cosby: It's True! It's True! – Credits". AllMusic (All Media Network, LLC.). 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Bill Cosby: It's True! It's True! – Awards". AllMusic (All Media Network, LLC.). 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  5. ^ "New music: In stores Tuesday". The Miami Herald (Florida). February 18, 2005. p. 35G – via NewsBank. 
  6. ^ "What's new on DVD and CD". The Kansas City Star (Missouri). July 10, 2008. p. E29 – via NewsBank. 
  7. ^ "Bill Cosby: It's True! It's True! – Awards". AllMusic (All Media Network, LLC.). 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  8. ^ Kane, George (February 23, 1990). "COS – Human nature, warmth at heart of comic's humor". The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colorado). p. 1 – via NewsBank. 
  9. ^ Brown, Gary (August 29, 2003). "Still a very funny fellow". The Repository (Canton, Ohio) – via NewsBank. 
  10. ^ a b Takiff, Jonathan (March 1, 2005). "J.Lo gives 'Rebirth'". Philadelphia Daily News (Pennsylvania). p. 36 – via NewsBank. 
  11. ^ a b Hicks, Chris (April 8, 2005). "'The Cos' CDs are cause for celebration". The Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah). p. W1 – via NewsBank. 
  12. ^ a b c d e "Bill Cosby 'date rape' routine surfaces". Sydney Morning Herald. November 18, 2014. Archived from the original on November 18, 2014. 
  13. ^ a b Khan, Maria (November 18, 2014). "'Serial Rapist' Bill Cosby's Audio Reveals Comedian Joked About Drugging Women". International Business Times. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Budasi, Tersa (November 18, 2014). "Listen: Bill Cosby's 1969 riff on drugging women's drinks". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on November 18, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  15. ^ Karras, DJ; Farrell SE, Harrigan RA, Henretig FM, Gealt L (September 14, 1996). "Poisoning from 'Spanish fly' (cantharidin)". American Journal of Emergency Medicine 14 (5): 478–483. doi:10.1016/s0735-6757(96)90158-8. ISSN 0735-6757. OCLC 08996781. PMID 8765116. 
  16. ^ Lewis, Robert Alan (1998). "Cantharidin; Cantharidin poisoning". Lewis' Dictionary of Toxicology. CRC Press. p. 222. ISBN 978-0849363177. 
  17. ^ Inglis, Esther (February 12, 2013). "'Spanish Fly' Aphrodisiac Causes Erection, Death". Archived from the original on February 13, 2013. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  18. ^ a b McDonald, Soraya Nadia (November 18, 2014). "Bill Cosby joked about drugging women in 1969 standup routine". The Vancouver Sun. The Washington Post. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  19. ^ a b c d Nessif, Bruna (November 18, 2014). "Remember When Bill Cosby Had an Entire Comedy Routine About Drugging Women's Drinks? Listen!". E! Online. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  20. ^ Chow, Emily; Mitch Rubin; Caitlin Moore; Veronica Toney; Chloe Coleman; Anne Farrar (November 22, 2014). "Timeline: Bill Cosby". The Washington Post. 
  21. ^ a b Myers Jr., George (October 11, 1991). "Author Cosby draws from 'child within'". The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio). p. 12F – via NewsBank. He uses them to mouth the dramas of childhood, and ventures a bit beyond, recounting the saga of his search for Spanish Fly 
  22. ^ Harral, Don (December 22, 1991). "Cosby Happy He Never Grew Up". Tulsa World. p. D6 – via NewsBank. Others include his first crush, his search for Spanish Fly, and making up outrageous lies to get away with things. 
  23. ^ Cosby, Bill (1991). Childhood. New York: Putnam. pp. 170–173. ISBN 978-0-399-13647-4. OCLC 23650310. 
  24. ^ Stewart, D.L. (November 3, 1991). "Bill Cosby's 'Childhood' won't leave you laughing". Dayton Daily News (Ohio). p. 7C – via NewsBank. investigating the possibilities of the all-time greatest wonder drug in mankind's history: Spanish fly. 
  25. ^ Pressley, Leigh (January 20, 1994). "Three cheers for Cosby". Greensboro News & Record. p. D1 – via NewsBank. Cosby, now 56, was known for spinning outrageous stories and playing pranks, such as putting a .45 bullet into a furnace in shop class and buying cornstarch from a sailor who told him it was the aphrodisiac Spanish Fly. 
  26. ^ Belkin, Lisa (November 21, 2014). "What the Cosby uproar says about how far we've come". Yahoo News. Archived from the original on November 21, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014. 
  27. ^ a b c d "Audio Surfaces of Bill Cosby Joking About Spanish Fly". Ebony. November 18, 2014. ISSN 0012-9011. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  28. ^ Scherstuhl, Alan (November 17, 2014). "Here's the 1969 Bill Cosby Routine About Wanting to Drug Women's Drinks". The Village Voice. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  29. ^ Burr, Ty (November 21, 2014). "Why did we ignore Bill Cosby allegations for so long?". The Boston Globe. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  30. ^ McDonald, Soraya Nadia (November 18, 2014). "Audio of Bill Cosby joking about drugging women resurfaces". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  31. ^ Vadala, Nick (November 18, 2014). "Bill Cosby joked about drugging women's drinks in 1969". Philadelphia Daily News (Philly.com). Retrieved November 22, 2014. 
  32. ^ Mullen, Jethro; Eliott C. McLaughlin (November 18, 2014). "Woman accuses Bill Cosby of sexually assaulting her decades ago". CNN. Archived from the original on November 22, 2014. Retrieved November 22, 2014. 

External links[edit]