Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sunday Comedian #3

Sorry for the lack of posts dear friends (I missed Friday Favorites :( ) I've been SUPER busy this week with Comedy and writing. My fellow comedian and friend, Keith Carey, and I are writing a screenplay. But I couldn't miss SUNDAY COMEDIANS!!

This weeks comedian that I am reviewing is Patrice O' Neal. This man is seriously funny. It is a down right shame that he has passed on. He is a very observational comic, most of it being about race. Mr. O' Neal is one of those few wonderful comics that really knows how to connect with the audience. The whole show you really feel like he is talking directly to you. He brings people in the audience into his act and makes them feel special. He always manages to light up the room with his high energy, abrasive attitude, and expressive face. We all miss you Patrice. Keep rocking it in heaven and making Jesus laugh.

Here is Patrice O' Neal's stuffz:

Some shnazzy links:

Patrice O' Neal's Website

And now for the upcoming! Derrick Lemos!

Derrick is a comedian in the LA/ Orange country area (seeing a pattern here audience?)  He has been performing for 2 years now and for a good reason. Derrick is a delightfully laughtacular man. In his owns words "My comedy is a wrecking ball of self deprecation, pop-culture references, and odd introspection. With a hint of "Is that honesty or cynicism?"" And how on the nose he is. Everytime I see Derrick his audience is wrapped around his little finger. The way he tells his jokes always has you on the edge of your seat and then on the floor in stitches.

Q #1: How did you start doing comedy? How did you know it was what you wanted to do?

A: I was first inspired to do comedy when I was little. My mom's side of the family loved comedy. I saw Eddie Murphy, Bill Cosby, George Carlin specials as a little kid. I didn't get a lot of the jokes, but just being exposed to it was awesome, and it carried over. I would come home from school, and I'd always catch the Comedy Central Presents specials. I remember writing down the jokes I thought were funny, and taking them to school the next day and trying them out on my friends. That kind of went away after a while, it's hard to mimic a particular performers cadence and rhythm when you're 9. I used to do voices a lot too. From cartoons, or real people. I'd play with my toys and do voices for them. I got sent to a speech therapist because I was talking like Shaq in class. I'm sure they thought I was being abused or something! The therapist sat me down and asked me to read some words. I read them normally, then she looked at me, looked at her notes, and made this face like she bit a lemon and got punched in the face, and told me I could go back to class. My first experience with live comedy was a couple of years ago. My friend asked me if I wanted to go to a comedy show at the Ice House in Pasadena, a couple of friends were going to go support one of the comedians. So we went, and I remember really listening to how they structured jokes, and delivered the punch, and thinking the whole time "I can do this." After the show, I talked to the comic that we went to go support and I talked to him about how to get into it. He introduced me to the producer of the show, and he offered me 6 minutes of time on the next show at the Ice House! So I told him yes. I spent the next few weeks writing jokes. The night came and I had a few friends come out, and there were barely any people there. They started the show, and not even all of the comics had gotten there. I had to go up first. The emcee did some time, and then brought me on. There were still only my group of friends, and an old married couple there. So I pushed my jokes, and they didn't get a big reaction. Until one of my friends responded to a joke about clubbing, and I capitalized on that moment to mess with her a little. The room erupted, and I felt this wave of endorphins hit me. It was unlike anything I had ever experienced doing theater. It wasn't the same. After a performance in theater, I'd still be in my head, or in character, and need to work my way out of it, take notes, get changed, and go home feeling deflated. With comedy, I was receiving the applause and the laughter as myself. That's what hooked me.

Q #2: How do you handle bombing?

A: When I first started, I was doing fairly well. I had never really bombed, but I also hadn't done that many shows or mics. I was in 2 orange county comedy competitions and made quarter and semi-finals. I was riding the battle steed named over-confidence. I have my first set where I tanked, on video. I can see the moment when they didn't react the way I wanted them to, I floundered and never recovered. It was like climbing a mountain, knowing the path that's supposed to be laid ahead of you, so you don't think you need equipment, reaching for that next hand hold, and it not being there. Then you realize "I'm on a fucking mountain. Holy shit. I'm gonna die." Needless to say, I didn't advance, and it crushed me. I held my chin up till I got to my car, and cried like a bitch for like 10 minutes. Now that i'm a little more seasoned, I try to analyze everything logistically. Try to figure out what the audience likes by listening to the crowds reaction to other comics. And when I bomb, I go back and listen to the tape. Was I not selling my jokes? Was my timing off? What could I have done better? Blaming an audience doesn't help make you better. It shows arrogance, and I don't want to be that guy. I want to be the guy that always has something to learn.

Q #3: What was your best performance? How did it feel?

A: My best performance to date was for my birthday, I was at the Brea Improv. Melissa Villasenor and Elliot Chang were headlining. I remember being anxious. I always get mild butterflies before shows. It tells me I still give a shit about my performance. I went up 3rd, blew the roof off the joint, and my hands were still shaking after the show, thanking people for coming out. I'm really grateful whenever I get to play venues like that. All the work that goes into having a solid set, networking, going to mics. All of it pays off when there's 400 people in front of you, all wanting to laugh.

Q #4: What's the weirdest thing someone said to you after a show?

A: Ummm.. I've had people buy me drinks, offer to pay me to play a party. Nothing strange. Other than someone being drunk, and slurring over their words, I haven't had anyone say anything weird to me. But it will happen, now that I said that, after every show I'm gonna get accosted by mutants. "Rubs the lotions on it's skin."

Q #5: Who is your comedy idol?

A: The list of comics that inspire me keeps growing. Guys like Louis CK, Jim Gaffigan, Patton Oswalt, Pete Holmes, David Cross. There's no way I could pick just one person, I still remember Comedy Central Specials from when I was 9. Jeremy Hotz, Harland Williams, Mitch Hedberg just to name a few. I don't think I would have ever done comedy had I not been exposed to it. I would've been another angst-y kid, not knowing what to do with his life, pushing carts at a supermarket for minimum wage. I'd chose playing a town in butt-fuck nowhere for money than that feeling you have when you don't know your purpose.


(Look at Keith Carey's link for "Bromosexual" to see Derrick in action!)
Hiccup (Movie also showing Derrick's greatness!)

Follow Derrick on Facebook to keep up with what's coming up next for him!

Have a beautiful day everybody!

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