Saturday, March 28, 2015

Del Close & John Brent: How To Speak Hip (1962 version)

It occurred to me recently that I’d never posted artwork for the LP that got me into this whole fershlugginer restoration obsession in the first place – so here it is! John Belushi considered this the greatest album of all time, and it’s not hard to see why; it’s not just hilarious, it’s righteous. Close & Brent knew whereof they spoke, you dig, and this album isn’t just a series of pot-shots at hipsters, it’s a deep dive into the philosophy of the bohemian “other” in a time of heavy conformity.

The original stereo LP from 1962 was a deluxe package, complete with an 8-page booklet in the gatefold with essays, test questions, a lexicon, and a dictionary of 177 Hip words & phrases. With such a surfeit of text, of course, it was inevitable that the art directors would make a few mistakes, and a comedy fan named John Scialli sent me a photocopy of his personal copy of the booklet to which Del Close had applied some handwritten corrections. The dictionary hadn’t quite been alphabetized completely; there were some typos and line doublings; there were misspelled names and one or two easy-to-miss word substitutions (“fuss” where it should have read “fuzz”); and there was at least one thing that only Del would ever have known about (Lord Buckley didn’t say “illiterate, cruddy amaze” but “illiterate, cruddy smaze”). All those corrections have now been integrated.

LP art (1962 version)

DISCLAIMER: To the best of my knowledge, this work is out of print and not available for purchase in any format. If you are the artist and are planning a reissue, please let me know and I’ll remove it from the blog. Also please get in touch if you’ve lost your art &/or sound masters and would like to talk with me about my restoration work.


  1. I probably shouldn't, only because this is actually in print on CD from the Wisecrack/Cherry Red label.

  2. Taylor, thanks for your great scans. It's so difficult to find this quality anywhere, let alone scans for the entire booklet. You da man!


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