Night 4 Montreal JFL

I was pumped up for tonight I headed to the Katacombes nice and early to see the Goddamn Comedy Jam again Bill Burr was up again with Margaret Cho and Peter D. The line up was huge and again it was a sell out so I raced over to JFLOL at Newspeak again.

Tonights show was hosted by Jake and Amir they didn’t seem to be very strong in a stand up sense they have a comedy web series and it showed because they we not the best. First up was Graham Clark he is a local and he was ok like the other shows the start really hasn’t been that strong. Next up was Sara Hennessey another local she has won a Canadian Comedy Award for best stand-up and again I had seen better acts when I was in Toronto. The rest of the show was the same except for Duncan Trussell and Ian Edwards I really came to see these two guns and they were great they really stood out from the rest. Duncan did a bit from his show that I have seen before but it was still great and Ian was slow to start but then ramped it up and smashed in the end.

The puppet dude was on again and died HARD again! Mike Ward who is a legend in Canada was on and it was good you could see the years of experience showing through although he didn’t kill. And the final act was Pete Holmes, Pete wasn’t that strong he tends to over smile a lot which I see only as a trick with some acts now. There were others but they weren’t worth mentioning.

Then I headed over to Cleopatras again to see Brian Posehn, Brian has been around forever as an actor, writer, fellow Metalhead  and comedian so it was cool to finally see him live. His set was good up and down with the funny but he seemed to have his crowd in so it was more relatable to those people. He sounds like Louis CK heaps if you close your eyes you would swear it was him. Anyway it was a good show.

Next show was the Roastmaster Invitational again the semi finals tonight we have some great acts on. Tonights Judges are Michael Che (SNL) and Trevor Noah (The Daily Show), stepped in for Keith Robinson, and joined director Jeremy Garelick (The Wedding Ringer), and Jeff Ross to take care of the those duties. First was Sarah Tiana VS Trevor Wilson This was so and it was very funny Trevor took it in the end.Ashley Barnhill and Mathhew Broussard. Both L.A. based comics and both regular competitors in the L.A. Roast Battle scene, Broussard eventually advanced to the semis by defeating Barnhill who had been asked back despite losing the night before. That was due to the poor performance of Mark Forward and Sean Cullen’s delirious half-drunken face-off resulting in neither comic winning.

Next was our own Tom Ballard Vs Tony Hinchcliffe Tony started strong smashed it but then Tom smoked him it was so one sided! Then Jimmy Carr Vs Joe DeRosa and Jimmy destroyed Joe it was so one sided it became funny.

Then I headed back to the after party and caught up with Evan and got free drinks and food met a heap of people then ran into Mini Holmes from Toronto and then she introduced me to a few people including the owner of Yuk Yuks who I hung out with for a while.

Later we were out the back were all the Deathsquad guys were and Duncan Trussell came up to me so we hung out chatting, He is such a nice guy very sweet so make sure you check him out in November when he comes to Oz.

The night finish with Kim, Mini and I going back to the vice president of ICM (the biggest agency in the world) Hotel room and hanging out till the next day drinking and being idiots lotsa fun! Chris is a very nice guy and very funny and great to chat with about the industry and how it works. Who would know more huh.

Lessons 

Roasting is awesome! It is what gives the North American acts an edge we don’t have you can see it in their style and we are falling behind in the standard of comedy because we wouldn’t allow a roast back home. Its mean you can’t say that because he might get upset etc. Im starting it crowd or no crowd!

Once you have a fan base it can become easier to perform. Its like your mates all know you and get you so your jokes work.

It seems a lot of the acts are doing the smaller shows to bring crowds for the bigger ones but the sets are designed for a Gala or theater so the jokes don’t work when it is performed as though there are 100 times the people watching. A pro should be able to do a different set for a small room that is why I think so many suck in the small rooms here.

Be Cool

Flemo

Night 3 Just for Laughs

A quick blog today I running behind,

First rule of JFL fightclub is, Don’t walk across town to see a show and leave your pass back at the room.

So the first show was at Newspeak its a really cool room we came here last year to see Iliza Shlesinger destroy. This show has 9 acts and the Mc was Flula Borg he is German and doesn’t do stand up more a weird singer/character. It was trying to get the crowd going. The first few act weren’t the best I have seen one guy had a dummy and got nothing! There was a step back in quality and big laughs compered to the other nights. There was a lot of flat jokes. Some were obviously for a gala crowd so it has a different rhythm that doesn’t work in this type of room.

Then Burt Kreischer hit the stage, he was the reason I came to this show and he didn’t disappoint, Now the movie Van Wilder is actually based on Burt and he is one of the best story tellers there is and the way he tells it makes it exciting all the way through. The rest weren’t the best.

Next stop was to Cleopatra’s a strip club to see Ari Shaffir’s “This is not Happening” This is the same show that is on Comedy Central where there is a subject this week it is CRAZY! Each act does around 8-10 mins telling you a story about something crazy. All of the acts smashed on this show Burt again was incredible this time going topless for the whole story and Sebastian Maniscalco was awesome as well. This would be such a great show if we could do it back home along with the roast shows.

Lessons

Write stories about something interesting and add your tags. These guys tell awesome stories the way you should tell awesome stories with a great build up and a huge pay off at the end.

There is a big step up from the guys who are the top here to the other acts. The guys like Burt and Ari can crush a room. The others can have good spots and thats it. It takes years there are no short cuts in comedy just years of hard work!

Tomorrow back to 3 shows and an after party drunk on.

Flemo

Night one at Just for laughs Montreal.

I headed out early to see a 7pm show as I had a spot at 9pm, but walking through the crowds and feeling the excitement in the air here I started to think it’s a bit far away.

The first show was at the Katacombes its a Metal venue really cool with skulls all over the pillars, Last year the door guy recognised me from Pegazus. So I rock in, I have an Industry pass so I can get in to most of the shows free. $5 PABS at the bar and I’m set. I was hanging to see this show It has a few of the same elements as a show i have been writing for the MICF.

This show is called The Goddamn Comedy Jam a mix of music and comedy each show has 3 acts get up do a set then tell a story then sing a song with the band. It starts with a band and the singer/Emcee Josh Adam Meyers a very good comedian from Baltimore, Maryland. They play songs but sing them in a funny way taking the lyrics literally while roadies are rocking out with the band and really getting the room pumped up.  Then Josh does some stand up and then bring on the 1st act.

First up was Kyle Kinane he has been to JFL a couple of times but been around for ages and he was awesome! The whole room were laughing hard! Great jokes and story before the band joined him for Sweet child of Mine. The guitarist has a flying V violin and starts. And they all go off! They really get the crowd up and going with a crazy intensity and energy. The roadies are jumping around the audience then during the solo the guitarist hangs of the balcony playing the violin then running through the crowd.

Next up was Brent Morin he plays Justin in the sitcom Undateable they are all here for the awards show later in the week. He has done this show a few times and like Kyle he was awesome too he got stronger towards the end.Then they jammed out to Are you gonna be my girl by Jet. Fucken Hate that song! Fake as! But anyway, he and they crew just rocked out hard on it! It was very funny and entertaining everyone is going off on stage the roadies are going nuts and the crowd are loving it.

Then Josh announces that they had a special guest Bill Burr but he has had to split early to film something, But we have a special guest coming up instead one of the biggest rockstars in world Dave Grohl! And everyone goes off! It’s Bill Burr with a wig and a pair of sunny’s on and he launches into a brilliant set, everyone was pissing them selves laughing from start to finish. He is a freak! How can you get much better year after year? To be better than the best year after year and you are the best! My face was hurting! If you know Bill Burr you know he love’s playing the drums so they blast out on some Foo Fighters. I couldn’t believe it this is the first show I see and was I going to go to that gig now? Fuck No! So I bolted to see Duncan Trussell he was right in the middle of the main strip a 5 minute walk.

Duncan is awesome I saw him briefly in LA and he did a lot of the stuff he did at the store but he had tweaked it so it was a lot more punchier. his show has a lot of turns and if you Duncan he has a soothing voice and nature that he can really take you anywhere and you will go.,And his closer is awesome I don’t really want to give any jokes away so I’ll just say when he comes to Australia in November go see him.

Then I raced back to the Katacombes to see Tom Segura, I have been wanting to see him live for ages and he was amazing! He smashed the room was rocking with laughter, Like a packed comics lounge with Pommy Johnson destroying. He is heaps funnier live his mannerisms and looks he gives add so much to his like ability.

The whole night was Stand up Comedy at a different level there is a polish to the jokes and a naturalness to these guys from 10-20 years of really hard work.

Lessons 

If my jokes don’t get the same response they are not finished. They can its just a matter of hard egoless work.

Acting out, everyone does it and does it right!

This is the best festival in the world, if only the Melbourne festival would spend some of that crazy money they make from open mic acts each year and spend it on this level of comedian it would inspire and raise the bar in Melbourne. So we all get better. 

Political correctness is way too over the top in Australia the things that get said here are full on and hilarious!

Don’t be afraid to go further it might be where you find your voice.

This was one of the best nights of comedy I have ever seen. 10/10 

Be Cool

Flemo

The Original Room at the Comedy Store

I was really pumped for the show tonight so I brought a ticket cause the rest of the week it was sold out. So of coarse the room was half full and the manager said no man you get in for free just sit in the comics section haha all cool. there was a few acts on I was really looking forward to seeing. 

First up Bobby Lee, I love Bobby Lee last year I saw him 3 or 4 times each time was better than the last. He was doing all new material and yes full on but he can get away with it. He was great he had the audience off side a bit but he had to run his new stuff, But like a pro he switched to old stuff to finish the set out so the crowd was up for the next act.

I don’t think I mentioned this there is no Emcee just 15min then the next gun for 15mins all night long!

Next up was Duncan Trussell Im a huge fan of Duncan , I saw him last year and he was killing me Duncan is a very spiritual guy so his material is along that line he looked like he was tuning some new stuff too most likely for his Montreal run in a couple of weeks. That is what I love seeing a bit early and then seeing where it ends up with these guys they are on a completely different level.

Next up was Michael Kosta I have only seen youtube of him but like always he was 10times better in the flesh half off the cuff and the rest like a pro lead the audience into his bits seamlessly and he really has that it factor he could just stand there and say nothing and people would watch.

Maz Jobrani is from Iran but a huge act in the states like the rest very good and clever.                                           Kirk Fox was also great we saw him last year and he really stood out this set was very funny and dark he comes across like a redneck serial killer. keep your eye out for him.                                                                                     Christina Pazsitzky is another I wanted to see her podcast she has with her husband Tom Segura Your moms house is huge and will also be in Montreal. She was cool as and running a lot of new material and going dark and dirty and again leaving the stage on a high for the next act.

The next few acts were good but again its hard when one act gets off and half the room just get up and go home so you come out to a tiny crowd. But they just push trough and its crowd work then lead them into your jokes.

Lessons learned 

One trick I noticed was some acts have constant hand movement when talking mostly in the hands, the hands are talking and telling the joke too.

If you have a small crowd you look stupid going straight into your jokes. It doesn’t make sense so chat have a play then ask them a question about what you are about to talk about but make them think they did it.

The old adage of start with your second best joke and finish with your best is always a safe bet when you don’t have a huge comedy toolbox leave the stage with a laugh.

And back home it is embarrassing how PC we have become, the audience go out here and know its all jokes thats it! Say what you want! We are not stupid and we will go with you on a goof! 

Tonight I will head down before and after the UFC its the biggest fight ever!!! But I will see I fly off to Toronto in the morning. I need to prepare for the gig at Yuk Yuks.

Dig it the most from coast to coast.

Flemo