The comedy world has lost a genius. Sammy Shore, the legendary stand-up comedian who co-founded the iconic Comedy Store in Hollywood, has died. Shore passed away from natural causes at age 92, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Sammy Shore founded The Comedy Store with fellow comedy writer Rudy Deluca in 1972. Two years later, Shore’s ex-wife, Mitzi, took ownership of the club in the couple’s divorce settlement, and the venue went on to become the launching pad for some of Hollywood’s biggest comics, including Richard Pryor, Robin Williams, Jim Carrey, and Roseanne Barr.
Sammy Shore’s 70-year comedy career included a long-running gig as the opening act for Elvis Presley’s residency comeback at the International Hotel starting in 1969. Shore also opened for such superstars as Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, Sammy Davis Jr., Connie Stevens, Tony Orlando, Tom Jones, Ann-Margaret, and Glen Campbell. Sammy Shore also regularly performed with his son, Pauly, and he was the most frequent performer ever at Harrah’s Casinos and Hotels.
In a series of poignant Twitter posts, Pauly Shore paid tribute to his father, Sammy. Pauly tweeted that his dad took him to his first comedy gig at The Alley Cat Bistro in Marina Del Rey in 1985. He also said his dad would introduce him onstage in the sweetest way.
“He would say, “ladies and gentlemen, I’ve opened for Elvis Presley and Sammy Davis Jr., but tonight I’m opening for my favorite entertainer. Please give a round of applause for my son… Pauly Shore.”
Pauly also said his long run as a comedy team with his dad was the best years of his life. The father-son comedy duo regularly performed onstage together for more than 20 years.
Pauly Shore also tweeted a poignant message to his late father that included a promise to carry on his comedy legacy.
“Dad, you lived an amazing life and I’m so proud to say that you are my father. When you’re in heaven I’ll be killing the crowds night after night and carrying on your legacy. Love you dad. Rest in peace.”
I'm saddened to let everyone know my father Sammy Shore recently passed at the age of 92 from natural causes. pic.twitter.com/6SFHIeLnnI— Pauly Shore (@PaulyShore) May 18, 2019
This was an awesome picture I took when I visited my dad in Las Vegas after lunch about a year ago he was the best you guys thank you so much for all the kind words pic.twitter.com/gYerVfWDjH— Pauly Shore (@PaulyShore) May 18, 2019
After his death was announced, many famous fans and friends took to Twitter to pay tribute to Sammy Shore. Judd Apatow wrote that Sammy Shore gave him his first job, while singer Tony Orlando sent love to the entire Shore family as he remembered his longtime friend. The Comedy Store also remembered its beloved co-founder. You can see some of the reaction to Sammy Shore’s death below.
Sammy Shore, Comedy Store Co-Founder and Stand-Up Comedian, Dies at 92 - Sammy gave me my first job booking & hosting at Sammy’s By The Shore in Marina Del Ray in the late 80’s.He was always kind and hilarious and taught me a great deal. He will be missed. https://t.co/S1Wv9fVNL4— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) May 19, 2019
Sammy Shore... A comedy genius and Elvis’s opening act for 20 years and also mine for another 20 years, passed away this morning. My deepest condelences to his loving wife, Suzanne, and to all of the Shore Family. Rest In Peace, Sammy Shore. I LOVE YOU!!! ❤️ pic.twitter.com/ySqh1oy8ce— Tony Orlando (@TonyOrlando) May 18, 2019
#RIP Sammy Shore...so full of joy that you got to hear Mom’s voice @conniestevens8 on your way out ????????????????????????@PaulyShore @PeterShore scottshore...he will no doubt be holding court at the Comedy Store in heaven???? pic.twitter.com/orFItWgn80— Joely Fisher (@MsJoelyFisher) May 19, 2019
Sammy Shore is survived by his wife of 29 years, Suzanne, his children, and two grandchildren.
You can see Pauly Shore introducing his dad Sammy Shore at his 90th birthday party in the video below. Warning: Explicit language.