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Summary

Doug Stanhope is one of the most critically acclaimed and stridently unrepentant comedians of his generation. What will surprise some is that he owes so much of his dark and sometimes uncomfortably honest sense of humor to his mother, Bonnie. It was the cartoons in HER Hustler magazine issues that molded the beginnings of his comedic journey, long before he was old enough to know what to do with the actual pornography. It was Bonnie who recited Monty Python sketches with him, who introduced him to Richard Pryor at nine years old, and who rescued him from a psychologist when he brought that brand of humor to school. And it was Bonnie who took him along to all of her AA meetings, where Doug undoubtedly found inspiration for his own storytelling. 

Bonnie's own journey from bartending to truck driving, massage therapy, elder abuse, and stand-up comedy and acting never stopped her from being Doug's genuine number one fan. So when Bonnie's alcoholic, hoarding life finally came to an end so many weird adventures later in rural Arizona, it was inevitable that Doug and Bonnie would be together for one last journey. 

Digging Up Mother follows Doug's absurd, chaotic, and often obscene life as it intersects with that of his best friend, his biggest fan, and the love of his life: his mother, Bonnie. And it all starts with her death - one of the most memorable and amazing farewells you will ever hear. 

BONUS: As fans of his stand-up and listeners of his podcast will attest, Doug is not a "by-the-book" type of guy. This audiobook is no exception. In what he refers to as the "director's cut commentary," Doug forgoes the confines of a straight-read and creates a truly unique listening experience, going off-script to riff throughout its sections and bringing in a cast of colorful characters – childhood friends, his podcast co-host, and fellow comedians and musicians – to voice letters from teachers and guidance counselors, diary entries from his mother, and even old homework assignments. Additionally, Doug has several of the folks mentioned in the book expound on and give their version of events and stories, often remembered quite differently. The result is a wildly fun audiobook that's as distinct as the comedian's own brand of humor. 

A special note from the author: 

Good news for all my blind and/or illiterate fans! The audio version of my book Digging Up Mother is now available on Audible! 

It's read podcast-style by myself and the golden-throated Chad Shank and features guest performances from those who appeared in the book, dropping in to share their own blurred memories of our sloppy pasts and ugliest stories. Guests include my childhood delinquent partner in crime Chris O'Conner, and Greg Chaille, Bingo, Mat Becker, Sarah Hyland (now Sarah HylanDER) and more.

©2016 Doug Stanhope; Foreword copyright 2016 by Johnny Depp (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What members say

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Surprising results

Any additional comments?

I listened to this earbook on an crowded, busy, loud, foul-smelling overnight sleeper train in China. It made the journey much more bearable, which made me much less keen on the idea of suicide. I think this is ironic, given Doug's personal beliefs and the contents of this book, because I don't know what irony is. One part made me laugh so hard, I accidentally knocked a chicken burger off my bunk and onto the head of the guy below me. He was a Muslim, and I'm pretty sure the burger wasn't halal. I tried to apologise profusely, but as we didn't share a language I can only be so certain that he understood.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Brilliant

Good grief. What a ride. Do yourself a favor and listen to this rare gem.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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A Worthwhile Listen

Includes a lot of additional commentary not in the text, making it closer to some of Doug Stanhope 's podcasts than to a straightforward audio book. This book is the reason I downloaded Audible and I'm so glad I did!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Solid book

Well worth the time and money. It is more of an extended podcast than an audio book

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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The greatest story ever told.

Tragic, funny, sickening and beautiful.
This is, without doubt, the most open, human and graphically honest, celebrity autobiography that will ever be written. Even if the author misremembered and stumbled through the entire book. His friends were there to help him along.
It somehow manages to stay laugh-out-loud-funny, poignant and interest all at once.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Doug and mother

I listened to the final installments this morning as I lay awake in a hospital bed. It was an emotional experience. I am an avid fan of Doug's podcast and am used to his bleak no holds barred approach to comedy and life in general. This was that normal full frontal attack on your sensibilities plus the tender underbelly of a man who had a truly loving and understanding relationship with his mother. Read this book or better still listen to Doug, Chad and co. Reading and chatting in between.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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The best audiobook I've ever listened to.

I just loved this from the get-go. Funny, emotional, disgusting and honest - everything I love in a book! Stanhope' narration is hilarious, and the additional riffs are an excellent touch. Listen to this at once!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Exactly what I'd hoped for...

Fans of Stanhope will not be disappointed. Everyone else... brace yourselves for impact. Obscene/wonderful.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Outstanding

Loved it - rambles away from the text of the book to great affect - truly astonishing life story

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Audiobook as concept album.

Best innovative use of the audiobook media format ever. Admirably honest, eloquent and funny AF.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • j.r.addams
  • 20-08-16

Exactly what I hoped for!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Highly recommended to friends that truly understand "humor, tragedy, and love" rolled up into a spitball.

Who was your favorite character and why?

All characters involved were my favorites.

Have you listened to any of Doug Stanhope and Friends’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I like all of his material. He stands out like a hammered thumb.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Nothing "par-tic-u-lar-ly" moved me. All of it moved me.

Any additional comments?

I listened to "Diggin Up Mother" in two days. Doug is a weed in the rose garden. He has survived pesticide sprays, droughts, and floods. One doesn't have to be pretty to survive and thrive. I want to shake his hand and say, "I understand." I will listen to it again to pick up on subtleties I may have missed.

36 of 37 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 17-08-16

Chad Shank's Golden Pipes

Doug Stanhope, with a little help from his friends, brings new insights and emotions into this already astounding story of love. However, the breakout performance, and the real reason to buy this book is the sultry tones of the one and only, Chad Shank. His voice is guaranteed to make you moist(especially you, fella), even in the saddest of moments.

30 of 31 people found this review helpful

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  • Ric Awsom
  • 15-09-16

This made me like him

I wasn't a fan but now can't get enough. Doug reads the book so well and I really appreciate all of the commentary throughout!

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Thaddeus
  • 13-09-16

Got me right in the feels.

What a great book. I had to turn it off multiple times so I wouldn't erupt into psychotic level laughter in my cubicle. It also genuinely brought tears to my eyes a couple times and caused me to reflect on my own life in a fresh way. A beautiful love story. Great performances from everyone including Doug no matter what he thinks. I hope the Tom Konopka podcast stuff makes it into the next edition.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Joseph
  • 01-09-16

A memoir that rewards listeners!

YouTube his standup first, if you don't like his humor you won't enjoy this much either. If you do, this book is great. He breaks the fourth wall a bunch, gives "directors cut" commentary and riffs with the actual people he's talking about in between chapters making this an immersive and rewarding listen.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Mary
  • 19-12-17

Digging up Doug Stanhope

I usually will read anything except gruesome hurting. This book beat me. I choose to not finish it. Bought as comedy it isn’t. I found the JR high school humor and escapades boring and good for nothing. It is all shock value and it doesn’t progress from there. Wish I knew how to return for credit. I find the book to be nonredeemable. Save ur time n money. Don’t bother trying to read. M

37 of 39 people found this review helpful

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  • Virginia
  • 16-09-16

One of the best ever

I have listened to a lot of audiobooks but Doug's is one of the best. It takes the genre to a whole new level and makes it unique. Also he is the most brilliant comedian living which makes it great too

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Erno
  • 15-09-16

Great book!

What does Doug Stanhope and Friends bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Additional stories and laughter.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Absolutely!

Any additional comments?

Such a great book! Stories of mother visiting Vegas reminded me of Dostoyevsky's classic The Gambler, just a great listen! Especially parts spoken by Mr. Chad Shank were absolutely brilliant!

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Quinn G Blandford
  • 15-09-16

hopefully responsible for a paradigm shift in how audiobooks are performed

I read this book in analog form and now hope that more people follow Doug Stanhope's example by doing an audiobook that's more a director's cut than merely the author or a stand in reading.
Hearing and in an odd way meeting the people in his stories was fascinating.
The golden pipes of Chad Shank should soon be all over audible as well.

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Harral
  • 27-01-18

Not my thing.

I tried to like this guy and thought the bit about his mother dying was a sweet, if not exactly conventional story. But then he lost me. The stories of him growing up as a miscreant and a bully, all the while trying to sell it as “creativity” was preposterous. The truth is that he was a disturbed kid with a pretty sketchy childhood. That he was able to turn it into a career as a comedian and not a serial killer is commendable. However, I don’t think his brand of humor is particularly funny. I’ll admit I only managed to get about two hours in before I couldn’t take it any more. Maybe he turns it all around in the end. But I doubt it.

62 of 69 people found this review helpful