Recent Posts in comedy

November 27, 2015


In Mike's own words:

It's me, Mike. That p'awkward idiot who jumped through the window in his sleep. Happy Thanksgiving! I feel genuinely thankful for you.

I have performed my all-new show "Thank God For Jokes" in EIGHTY CITIES in the last two years. Are there eighty cities in America? Yes, and 2,019 Applebee's. But I'm not here to tell you about Riblets™.

I'm here to tell you that my final stop for "Jokes" is New York City.

For six weeks I'll be performing "Thank God for Jokes" in the beautiful and intimate Lynn Redgrave Theater, the same theatre where I debuted Sleepwalk with Me eight years ago. To this day I have people come up to me on the street and tell me about seeing Sleepwalk there 8 years ago. We put our hearts into these off-Broadway shows. We have a Tony award winning set designer Beowulf Boritt. We have our award-winning director Seth Barrish. I have honed the material to be the most precise, finely tuned, funniest show I can possibly conceive. It will be a blast. I promise.

And I'm telling you first. Because here's the thing. Theater tickets are insanely expensive. I know. I get it. It's absurd. So I'm giving you the first chance to buy tickets today at a discount. Before a press release goes out. Before there's a single ad or subway poster. When you use the code "JOKES" you can buy tickets for 35 bucks plus fees. (4 bucks).

Be one of the first 150 orders and get this free screen print. Thanks designer Adam Jeffers!

And because it's Black Friday and we've just gone on sale, Joe Bags is sending the first 150 people who order tickets this limited edition screen print of the show, as well as my signed Christmas card. That way you put the poster under the tree/menorah, you hand your sweetie the card, and you say, this is for the show I also got you tickets for. Boom.

One last thing. Maybe don't bring kids under 13 or so. Or 16, depending on your kid and how terrible a parent you are. This show is written for adults. It's about jokes and thus the language is sometimes not what you'd hear on the radio or on Jimmy Fallon. That said, it's not gratuitous. It's extremely precise to the word and I'm very proud of that. So adults, rejoice. You will laugh your balls off.

Okay, that's it. I love you guys. Be safe. Don't drink and drive, hit me, and then make me pay for the car.


UPDATE: the discount code only works for the first 10 shows.

Mike is also making a movie.

November 25, 2015

by Andrew Sacher

photo by Jess Flynn
Katie Ellen

Chumped are on hiatus, but we recently mentioned that singer Anika Pyle and drummer Dan Frelly formed the new band Katie Ellen. They've already played a few shows, and this week they released their first song, "Lucy Stone." It's more lo-fi than anything Chumped had ever done (though they are saying it's just a demo), but the melody and drive of that band aren't lost at all. It's a heavy song lyrically, dealing with the very real anxieties surrounding expectations that are set for you by family/society/loved ones/etc: "Well I don't wanna have your children / Does that make me less of a woman? I don't believe in getting married / It's a social economic prison." Listen below and download it for free here.

Katie Ellen's next show is playing the next installment of comedian Chris Gethard's 'Career Suicide' show, "an hour of stand up focusing on suicide, alcoholism, and all the other funniest parts of life." It happens December 21 at Union Hall. Tickets are on sale.

Anika also plays a solo show with Lauren Denitzio and Mikey Erg.

Continue reading "Katie Ellen (1/2 of Chumped) share first song, "Lucy Stone," playing Chris Gethard's 'Career Suicide' show"

November 24, 2015

Sarah Silverman

Sarah Silverman was to have played the NY Comedy Festival earlier this month with a show at BAM but got sick and had to postpone. She's just announced the makeup date: January 22 at BAM's Peter Jay Sharp Building. The show is titled "Sarah Silverman and Friends" and they haven't announced who those friends will be but tickets are on sale.

Mike and the cast of 'Don't Think Twice'
Don't Think Twice Mike Birbiglia

Mike Birbiglia wrote, directed and starred in 2012's acclaimed Sleepwalk with Me. He's got a new movie in the works, titled Don't Think Twice about an improv troupe that includes Keegan-Michael Key (Key & Peele), Gillian Jacobs (Community), Kate Micucci (Garfunkel and Oates), Tami Sagher (Inside Amy Schumer) and Chris Gethard. The official synopsis:

The comedy is about an improv group that loses the lease on its home theater at the same time that one of its cast members gets chosen for the biggest sketch-comedy show on TV. It's about the bitterness and backstabbing that occurs among friends when they realize that maybe not everyone's gonna make it after all.
Filming in NYC is currently underway, so stay tuned.

In other news, Mike is part of charity event "The 2nd Annual Talent Show" which happens at NYC's New World Stages / Stage 3 on December 1. Also part of this are Bleachers, Sara Bareilles, Fred Armisen, Lena Dunham, Elle King, Andrew Dost, John Early, Roy Wood Jr, Jacqueline Novak, with host Rachel Antonoff and JD Samson as your DJ for the evening. Tickets are on sale and all proceeds go support New Alternatives' work with LGBTQ Youth. Poster for the show is below.

Continue reading "Mike Birbiglia making new movie w/ Keegan-Michael Key, Chris Gethard & more ++ performing at LGBTQ benefit show"

Julie Klausner's Depressing Christmas Party

As mentioned, Julie Klausner will be celebrating the holidays with her "Depressing Christmas Party" at NYC piano bar Sid Gold's Request Room on December 19. That show has sold out but she's added second show, happening December 21 at The Bell House with the same guests: Ted Leo, John Early, Cole Escola, and Anthony Atamanuik. Tickets for the Bell House are on sale now.

November 23, 2015

h jon benjamin jazz daredevil

Comedian H. Jon Benjamin is releasing his first musical project, a jazz album called Well I Should Have...* (*Learned How to Play Piano), which comes out Friday (11/27) and is available right now digitally via Sub Pop. The LP has six songs, four of which are called "I Can't Play Piano." In a promotional video about the making of the album, Jon makes it clear that he really can't play piano, and saying "in hindsight, I don't think it was the best idea in the world." The video features actual jazz musician Odean Pope and you can watch it below.

The album, meanwhile, was mixed by Loren Bouchard (Bob's Burgers, Home Movies) and Jon is accompanied by Scott Kreitzer (saxophone), David Finck (bass), and Jonathan Peretz (drums). The album's opening skit, Deal with the Devil," features Aziz Ansari (Jon had a part in Master of None) and Bob's Burgers co-star Kristen Schaal. You can listen to that, and two of the "I Can't Play Piano" tracks, below.

Benjamin also recently reprised his role as a talking can of vegetables on Wet Hot American Summer and showed up at the Sub Pop CMJ showcase, so now his appearance there makes a lot more sense.

Continue reading "comedian H. Jon Benjamin is releasing a jazz LP on Sub Pop featuring Aziz Ansari and Kristen Schaal (video, streams)"

John Waters Christmas 2015 Tour

John Waters may not have made a film since 2004's A Dirty Shame but he has not retired. He's got two books in the works: a collection of essays, titled Mr. Know it All, which includes "Why do gay people have to be nice now? Is it ever appropriate to take LSD when you are 70 years old? How does it feel to claw your way to the top of Hollywood and then slide right back down again?"; and his first novel, which is titled LIARMOUTH. While release dates on those are still TBA, you can check out his book Carsick which details his hitchhiking sojourn across America, and is fresh out on paperback.

Waters also has his annual "A John Waters Christmas" tour, this year dubbed "Holier & Dirtier," featuring his love of Christmas kitsch (and disdain for other parts of the holiday). That tour kicks off this weekend in San Francisco and has two shows in the NYC area: City Winery on December 6 (tickets) and Asbury Park's brand new House of Independents on December 7 (tickets). All tour dates are listed below.

Continue reading "John Waters working on two new books, starts his annual Christmas show tour this weekend (dates)"

November 18, 2015

photo: Julie Klausner @ Bell House, 2012 (more by Erik Erikson)

Local comedian, podcaster, Difficult Person, and generally entertaining individual Julie Klausner is putting on a Christmas show on December 19 at Sid Gold's Request Room. "Julie Klausner's Depressing Christmas Party" will feature frequent collaborator Ted Leo, John Early (who was on Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp this summer), Cole Escola (Difficult People), Anthony Atamanuik and more TBA. Expect laughs, songs, and tongue-in-cheek yuletide revelry. Tickets are on sale now.

Ted and Julie also wrote a holiday song together called "Bitter on Christmas" for Julie and Billy Eichner's Hulu series Difficult People. You can listen to it via Apple Music.

Meanwhile, Ted Leo is also playing some Christmas shows of his own with Aimee Mann (they did this last year as well) on December 10 at Town Hall and December 12 at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Tickets are still available.

And in somewhat related news, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists drummer Chris Wilson's band HOUND has a new record coming out. SRA Records will release Out of Space on November 27, the same day they play a release show with The Kominas and Dangerbird at Everybody Hits Philadelphia. They released a new song today called "Over the Edge," which follows the previously-released "Emotional Collapse," both of which are fun, fuzzed-out '70s hard-rock rippers. You can stream them below.

Continue reading "Julie Klausner & Ted Leo have a bitter holiday song, appearing at "Depressing Christmas Party""

November 17, 2015


This past weekend's episode of Saturday Night Live featured host Elizabeth Banks with musical guest Disclosure and special guests Lorde and Sam Smith:

Sam Smith and Disclosure

Matthew McConaughey and Adele are on this coming Saturday (11/21).

Amy Poehler is also starring in a Netflix holiday special with Bill Murray.

November 12, 2015

Carl Newman on Drunk History

If you watched this week's episode of Comedy Central's Drunk History, there was a segment on Thomas Edison (played by Chris Parnell) that also featured Spinal Tap's Michael McKean and, in a blink-or-you'll-miss-it cameo, AC Newman of New Pornographers. Carl plays a projectionist and he shared a little bit about the experience via Twitter:

You can watch Carl's Drunk History performance below.

In other news, AC Newman will participate in a live taping of podcast "Song Exploder" where "musicians take apart their songs, and piece by piece, tell the story of how they were made." That happens at The Greene Space on Saturday (11/14) and is unfortunately sold out, but you'll be able to listen to the podcast soon.

Continue reading "AC Newman of New Pornographers was on 'Drunk History,' taping an episode of podcast "Song Exploder" live in NYC"