Wednesday, January 20, 2010


We all need a laugh. More than ever. And that couldn't be more apparent then when the city of Portland discovered that Dave Chappelle came to town. I've been hunting for info for when he would resurface again (his site is still not up yet) for quite some time. Where has he been? Not that he's not entitled to get out of the toxic machine and spend time with family (I'm one of the crazy few that believe his decision to leave his show was a wise one), it's only that great comedians like him are rare.

Blocked from the NBC's site like all other non-Americans, I finally found a video of his FREE show in Portland Oregon. Don't get too excited...word broke out of the "secret" comedy show and the venue was soon bursting at the seams. Expecting a mere 200 or so people, his singular amp system was not strong enough to satisfy the huge crowd that was pressing down on him. Eventually it had to be cancelled. What a disappointment. If only a few hundred people came and released it on youtube like his visit to London a few years ago, then we'd all be a great deal happier. I feel like he's Waldo. Popping in to support his friend, Dave Chappelle gave a surprise 30-minute set at Caroline's on Broadway just a month ago (December 2,2009 to be exact)! Painful... wish someone had at least recorded it... er.. iphone app anyone?

The best sign is that he's at the thirty minute mark, an indication that he's prepping a possible tour? Here's hoping.

I have to hand it to all great stand up comedians, it's a cruel road to build up an entire set. If you're wondering what I'm talking about check out Comedian (2002). Even if you don't like Seinfeld, I found his documentary to be a fascinating lesson of how hard it is to create an hour routine. Following two comedians at completely different stages of their career, Orny Adams a young comedian trying to break into the business, and Seinfeld's return after the wrap of his nine year smash hit sitcom. Also included are interviews with Jay Leno, George Shapiro, Bill Cosby, Ray Romano, Chris Rock and many more.

Canada's greatest export: Russell Peters.
I recently borrowed my friends copy of Russell Peters fantastic stand-up set: Red, White, and Brown. Definitely worth watching... here's a taste.

Great comedians to watch.. (links to youtube in orange)

George Carlin, Richard Pryor (The absolute Pro),Bill Hicks, Ellen Degeneres, Bill Cosby, Jack Benny, Dave Chappelle, Seinfeld, Eddie Murphy, Johnny Carson (clip with Letterman), Danny Bhoy, Kathy Griffin, Chris Rock, Rodney Dangerfield, Woody Allen, Steve Martin, Lenny Bruce, Kids in the Hall, and of course Ricky Gervais.

The Johnny Carson interview up above is interesting because it features Letterman interviewed after losing out to Leno for NBC, but the start of his own show as well.