When it comes to stand up comedy nobody was rawer, more controversial, or talented than Richard Pryor. There were no limits, no boundaries to his act. His personal demons and troubles were on full display every time he touched the mic. Nothing was off-limits to Richard, which meant he always got huge laughs on stage, but often at the cost of his personal life. Jailed for tax evasion, he nearly burned his face off freebasing cocaine, and even when he helped pen the classic picture Blazing Saddles, he was removed from casting consideration because of concerns over being able to insure him.

Yeah, the guy had some extremely f’ed up stories and had no problem telling them in public. He was probably one of the best pure story tellers to ever grab a microphone. And, in spite of (or fueled by) all his shortcomings, Richard Pryor will go down as one of the greatest comedy minds of all-time.

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