In the early 1990’s, black stand-up comedy was too raw for major television networks. African-American comedians needed their own platform where they could show off their persona.
On July 1, 1992 Russell Simmons @UncleRush teamed up with HBO and birthed Def Comedy Jam.This shift created a home for black and Latino comedians and paved the way for some of the All Stars in the game such as Cedric The Entertainer, Chris Rock, D.L. Hughley, Dave Chappelle, Jamie Foxx, Martin Lawrence, Chris Tucker, and the late Bernie Mac.
This unseen before edgier style of comedy caused HBO’s ratings to go sky high during its 5-year run. Simmons also gained more street cred as he branched from the hip-hop scene and stepped into the realm of entrepreneurship.
Rest Peacefully Bernie Mac 1958 – 2008