Cosby, shown here in 1969, began his career in New York nightclubs as a standup comedian. His clean-cut style became a career mainstay.
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Photos:Bill Cosby: Evolution of an icon
Cosby feeds one of his children in the mid-1960s. Cosby first made his name with his comedic storytelling, often based on his childhood experiences. In 2011, SPIN magazine put "To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With" at the top of its 40 Greatest Comedy Albums of All Time list.