As Los Angeles-based fans of Tim and Eric know, David Liebe Hart, the slightly off, but obviously harmless Christian Scientist puppeteer and singer/songwriter, has been one of the city’s…er best kept secrets for over two decades. I’ve seen Hart with “Doug the Dog” and his ventriloquist dummy “son” Chip the Black Boy performing outside of the Hollywood Bowl and the La Brea Tar Pits, singing his songs about alien abductions, staying off drugs and how badly he wants a girlfriend since I first moved here. Not only would I often see Hart busking for spare change, I’d also see him on cable access television with his Junior Christian Teaching Bible Lesson program. In fact, James Quall, another Tim and Eric cast member was (is?) a member of the Junior Christian Teaching Bible Lesson posse himself. Praise the lord that Tim and Eric have seen fit to provide gainful employment for these two rather eccentric fellows.
You can find numerous examples of David’s cable access handiwork on YouTube but here is a very revealing segment from The Daily Show where we catch him describing how his wife left him and trying to give out her phone number so people can harass her for committing adultery!! (I once recall seeing him tell a story about getting a venereal disease on a live cable access show and then giving the woman’s name and telephone number out on air. Each time someone would call in, the host would tease Hart that it was this woman on the line and that she was really angry. He seemed genuinely terrified every time the phone would ring).
One day my wife and I were driving down Beverly Blvd and we saw a determined guy with a deteriorating Afro darting across the street. “Hey… look… it’s….” I said, stammering at the famous face in front of my car, but she was quicker. “SALOME!” she shouted and David Liebe Hart grinned from ear to ear that, happy that at long last, he was finally being recognized.
Sadly Chip the Black Boy was “kidnapped” from David and has not been seen again. Don’t expect to see him on any milk cartons.
David Liebe Hart and Adam Papagan on MySpace (listen to their paean to “Ellen Degeneres”!)
He’s More Than Meets the Ear; The Hollywood Bowl’s ‘puppet man’ would like a better gig, but mostly he just wants to belong (Los Angeles Times article by Tricia Nelson)
Originally posted 08/20/09.