The goat of comedy known to us as Paul Mooney has passed away at the age of 79. The pioneering comedian known as the “godfather of modern Black comedy,” and writer for Richard Pryor died in his Oakland home from a heart attack.
Cassandra Williams, Mooney’s publicist said he died early Wednesday from a heart attack.
Mooney’s collaboration and friendship with Pryor started in 1968 and lasted until Pryor died in 2005. These two were quite the pair confronting and tackling racism directly onstage.
Nashville comedian Renard Hirsch shares, “Paul was a force! He was raw, unapologetically black, and proud! He was uncompromising. He spoke the truth with humor and addressed so much of the racism in the world. I love listening to his albums on road trips. He had a great impact on American comedy and comedy in general!”
We owe a lot of the black pop culture to Mooney since he was responsible for being the head writer of the 90s “In Living Color” and birthed the famous Homey D. Clown character.
Later, he would make the same impact on the black comedy scene with The Dave Chappelle Show with the future-foretelling Negrodamus.
Mooney was known for his boldness and fearless tongue in the comedy world. He was BLUNT on racism topics.
In his 2012 special, “The Godfather of Comedy,” he said the only way to end racism was to “kill every white person on this planet.” Mooney considered himself “the first comic to bring a ‘just between us’ Black voice to the stage.”
“I say what I feel. White folks got their freedom. I’m going to be free, white and 21, too,” Mooney said in 2010.
Mooney chronicled his partnership with Pryor in his 2007 memoir, “Black Is the New White.” They first met, Mooney recalled, when Pryor showed up at a party at Mooney’s apartment on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood and suggested an orgy. Mooney threw him out.
They were opposites in many ways. Mooney didn’t drink or do drugs. But they found they shared a natural connection.
“Even though I have a feeling that sooner or later it’s all going to crash, I still accept Richard’s friendship,” Mooney wrote in “Black Is the New White.” “He is irresistible.”
Dave Chapelle tribute:
Paul Mooney Analyzing White America