Entries tagged with: Jon Glaser
by Bill Pearis
Meemaw visits 'Wake Up, White People' host David Cross on 'The Heart, She Holler' S3
John Lee and Vernon Chatman have been weirding out late night television viewers for 10 years as the primary creative forces behind PFFR: first with not-for-kids kids show Wonder Showzen, then with the hallucinogenic, hard-to-look-at Xavier: Renegade Angel and, most recently, on the Southern Gothic soap opera The Heart, She Holler. (They were also writers and producers on Jon Glazer's awesome Delocated.) The thread running through them all: Lee and Chatman's gleeful dismantling of American culture, labyrinthine and pun-filled dialogue, and a desire to see viewers' jaws drop.
Season three of The Heart She, Holler debuts on December 1 on Adult Swim, starring folks like Patton Oswalt, David Cross, Amy Sedaris, Scott Adsit (30 Rock), Steve Little (East Bound and Down) and other familiar comedy faces. You can watch the trailer below. There's a Season Three preview screening on Tuesday (11/18) at BAM at 7:30 with a Q&A with Q&A with Adsit (who just joined the cast) and John Lee. It's free and you can RSVP to attend, though entry is based on capacity. We're also giving away a pair of guaranteed passes as well, and details on that are below.
PFFR's John Lee
In addition to working on his own shows, John Lee has directed episodes of Broad City and a few music videos, and he used to be in a couple bands: jokey late-'90s indie rockers Muckafurgason, and a pre-TV PFFR who put out records in the early '00s. Full disclosure: I've known John for almost 20 years, and he took a few minutes away from scarring Middle America's eyeballs to talk about The Heart She Holler, food courts, unprecedented sexual positions, Morrissey, David Lynch and the difficulties of wrangling an ex-President for a cameo. PFFR are infamous for their non-interview interviews, but there's at least a little directness here.
BrooklynVegan: So what are you working on now? Season 3 of The Heart She Holler is in the can, right?
John Lee: Yeah, it's in the trash can as we say. The trash can of America. Any of your local mall food courts, that's what we call the trash can. We call the South "Food Court America" up here in the North.
BV: How much time have you and Vernon spent in the South?
JL: (Laughs) Together or separately? Well, together it was all in sin. It felt like forever but it was only six minutes. Um, separately? Through touring... it would add up to a handful of peanuts. A bag of boiled peanuts, that's how long I've spent in the South. But the thing is you don't even need to spend time in the South to understand American culture, like American hillbilly ideals. All you have to do is go 40 minutes outside of any city and you're there. America, it's all that. It's everywhere you go. The South is just the place everyone says "Oh, it's that." But it's not, it's everywhere.
Did you think you'd be doing a third season of The Heart, She Holler when you guys came up with the idea?
We, as in PFFR, all our shows that are self-created have never gotten past a second season. This is the first time we've broken the curse. Wonder Showzen was only two seasons, Xavier was only two seasons. Delocated made it longer, but that wasn't just our show. It was a thrill, but we were also scared because when you break a curse you never know what sort of demon's going to show up. The undead will rise? Your nightmares will become reality? We'll see.
Continue reading "Adult Swim's 'The Heart, She Holler' returns for S3 (screening at BAM); creator John Lee discusses Broad City, his old bands, casting an ex-president, weirdness & more in BV interview"
Eugene Mirman with Robyn Hitchcock and H. Jon Benjamin
The 7th Annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival took over the Bell House and Union Hall in Brooklyn for the past few days to bring audiences an audacious, eclectic, and titillating smorgasbord of comedic events. Of all the events, I chose to attend You Never Know Who Might Drop By at the Bell House on Saturday September 20 at 10:00pm. The only guest to be announced ahead of time was H. Jon Benjamin. The rest of the line up was listed as "Special Guest." Remarkably, even with only one guest announced, the show was very sold out.
The show ended up being hosted by special guest Eugene Mirman. I sort of assumed that would be the case, but you know what happens when you assume right? Ass. U. Me. Anyhow, Euge was the host and he performed his duties with his usual grace and aplomb. His hosting agilities shouldn't be surprising considering he's a non-stop performer and has hosted recurring comedy showcases Invite Them Up, Tearing The Veil of Maya, Pretty Good Friends, and probably more. Saturday evening, he kept his opening set extremely short and tight, but he did have an extremely funny riff about how you can literally write whatever you want about yourself on LinkedIn and there is zero proof required. He read off samples of his own bullshit LinkedIn profile and I gotta tell you it was pretty damn funny.
Eugene's first guest was Wyatt Cenac. Throw a dart at an open page of Time Out New York and chances are you will hit a show listing with his name on it. The dude not only has his own show called Night Train every Monday night at Littlefield, but you can see him practically every night of the week at several other venues throughout the city. The dude's a machine. A relentless performer. It has taken me a while to be drawn into Wyatt's super low energy delivery and stage demeanor, but I gotta say he was killing me on Saturday. He's definitely a super popular comic who is definitely worth checking out.
Glaser as Johnny Ding-Dong
After Wyatt wrapped up his set, the great and Klaus-Approved Gold Pass Favorite Jon Glaser came out (not his first time this year), reprising his role as Brooklyn's #1 Insult Comic Johnny Ding-Dong. I haven't seen this particular character of his in eight freaking years; the last time was during a Comedians of Comedy stop at Irving Plaza (video here). Johnny basically insults audience members over pretty banal and obvious characteristics of theirs; a hat, glasses, how they're sitting...then he sits down and eats a slice of pizza, very slowly. At some point during this, the sound guy 'accidentally' starts playing the theme song to the 1978 drama The Deerhunter, which also happens to be one of the saddest instrumental tunes of all time. Johhny then goes through an emotional breakthrough. Aside of being extremely funny, the whole bit intentionally goes on for waaaaay too long, testing the audience's endurance to the fullest. It is not an easy bit, but it is one of my favorites as it so absolutely alienates the audience to the extreme.
Johnny Ding-Dong left the stage and was followed by a bit with Eugene Mirman and the great Robyn Hitchcock. They started out as a duo, offering up bits of very funny advice for problems submitted by audience members prior to the show. Luckily, before the bit got too long, Eugene left Robyn up there alone with an acoustic. Besides regaling the audience with great stories and personal philosophies, Robyn played three tunes, including a beautiful cover of "The Crystal Ship" by the Doors (on his new album) and a fantastic version of his tune "Dismal City" that was so much better than the full band version... it was nuts. He was a fantastic storyteller and I loved his solo tunes.
After Hitchcock came comedian Joe Wong who I actually never heard of, but man did he slay. I cannot tell you how much I loved this guy. There was a brilliant economy to each of his jokes. They were free of flair and BS; they were delivered as perfect as you could imagine. His insights into the racism inherent in American society, though troubling, were so elegantly lampooned that the entire room was roaring. For me he was the highlight of the evening. I love seeing a comic for the first time and having him/her absolutely destroy. Sadly, his calendar is empty, but if you see the name Joe Wong on any upcoming comedy showcases you should go. Refreshing talent. I would like him to be famous immediately, thanks.
Wong's set was quite brief unfortunately, and he was followed by Eugene Mirman and Ted Allen (Chopped, Queer Eye For The Straight Guy) for round two of audience advice. I missed this because I had to pee wicked bad and also needed another beer, but I heard some laughs while I was in the latrine so that was a good sign. Next up was the only billed comic of the night, H. Jon Benjamin. HJB definitely had the longest set of the evening, and it started out with a bit featuring him and Eugene, where Eugene read off all of HJB's requirements from his talent rider. This definitely felt like it went on a bit too long as even Eugene regarded the bit as "The exhausting comedy of Jon Benjamin and Eugene Mirman." Side note: Mirman and Benjamin have created Flotsam, a "Post-Structural Online Shopping Experience" where you can buy sacks of "hand-chosen items that are hand-hewn by machines in America and are shipped directly to you."
Back to the Bell House, after that HJB was joined by one of my personal favorites Larry Murphy. The premise of their bit was that since we were at The Bell House we were most certainly missing episodes of the Big Bang Theory which seems to be on TV in perpetuity. So they acted out some smarmy Big Bang esque dialogue which, like the rider bit, went on a bit too long as well.
Although Jon Benjamin's set was definitely hilarious and worth seeing, it went on longer than I had the strength to endure. I was at a motorcycle block party earlier in the day and had been drinking since 3 in the afternoon, so by the time headliner Jen Kirkman took the stage, I was hot, sweaty, gassy, uncomfortable, and basically seeing quadruple. I can see why she'd headline; she has a history in comedy that stretches way back to the old days in Boston with Larry Murphy and Eugene Mirman, she has a book out that sold a zillion copies, she's a favorite on Chelsea lately, she was in from LA... she's famous and successful. But combine the fact that I don't really care for her comedy and the fact that my liver was hanging out my asshole and down my pant leg, it was time to go.
The early show at the Bell House was a special EMCF edition of "Pretty Good Friends" with Jessi Klein, Nick Thune and Karen Kilgariff. Pics from EMCF night 1 are here and we'll have more to come. Pics from night 3's early show, plus more from "You Never Know Who Might Drop By," below...
Dave Hill, Eugene Mirman, Amy Schumer, Bridget Everett,
The 7th Annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival began last night at the Bell House with a singing competition for comedians dubbed Gowanus Idol judged by festival founder Eugene Mirman along with Amy Schumer, NPR's This American Life host Ira Glass, and comedian Jon Glaser as Derrick Brown's dad. He took over as judge when Amy had to leave.
Tickets are still available to see 5 Comics to Watch Get on Variety's 10 Comics to Watch List featuring Mehran Khaghani, Michelle Wolf, Phoebe Robinson, Janelle James, Joe Zimmerman, host Josh Gondelman at Union Hall tonight, and for the Bell House's A Night of Cutie-Pies with Nick Thune, Jon Glaser, Karen Kilgariff, and SNL's new Weekend Update co-anchor Michael Che.
Spoiler: Bridget Everett won the competition. Catch her show at Joe's Pub called ROCK BOTTOM, which we saw last week. It's been extended until October 16th.
Pictures from the Bell House continue below...
by Arielle Gordon
Neko Case surrounded by comedy admirers at '13 Mirman fest (more by David Andrako)
What do Ira Glass, Michael Ian Black, Mike Birbiglia, and Neko Case have in common? They all made an appearance at last year's spectacular Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival, Brooklyn's most well-curated, arbitrarily created comedy festival.
Well, the festival is back for its seventh year from September 18 - 22 at The Bell House and Union Hall, this year with an extra night of festivities added onto the standard four-day lineup. As usual, its an eclectic mix of comedians, entertainers, musicians, and scientists, including H Jon Benjamin, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Bill Nye, Michael Che, Dave Hill, Elna Baker, Nick Thune, Jon Glaser, Bridget Everett, Michelle Wolf, Jessi Klein, Wyatt Cenac, Robyn Hitchcock and Derrick Brown among those announced so far. There's also two nights of Startalk Live! this year, one hosted by Bill Nye and one with Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Like every EMCF, the best shows are always rife with special guests and secret additions. 2014 schedule, as it stands, is below and tickets go on sale Friday (8/8) at 1 PM. You can also buy, for the first time, a ($500) Eug Express Lane VIP Pass that gets you into all the shows and allows you to skip the line.
2014 Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival lineup is listed below...
by Klaus Kinski
New York City has always been a hotbed of recurring comedy showcases, but I feel like now more than ever we are having a serious Renaissance of comedy. Thank Cod for Hy Bender's religiously updated show-bible Best New York Comedy; he is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what's happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive. These days I don't get out to as many comedy shows as I would like, so for me my comedy Renaissance was in the pre-2009 era and revolved around legendary venue Rififi.
Rififi will always be regarded as a sort of Mecca to me as it was the right venue at the right time and had a weekly roster of recurring comedy shows that absolutely dominated the scene at the time. Obviously, Invite Them Up was the Godfather of comedy showcases, but my all time favorite Rififi showcase had to be The Greg Johnson and Larry Murphy Show, which had the coveted Friday night slot, which meant I could drink my balls off and not have to worry about getting up for work the next day, which means my memories of the show are all euphorically wonderful though extremely hazy. The reason this show had an edge over Invite Them Up (a miniscule edge but an edge nonetheless) was because Greg and Larry not only booked a similar caliber of top-shelf guests as ITU, but because of how much I truly love Greg Johnson and Larry Murphy as comedians and performers. On the one hand, you have Greg Johnson who is a classic stand-up comedian who is all about economical and brilliant set-up and delivery. On the other hand, you have Larry Murphy who is more renowned for his voice-work (Assy McGee, Bob's Burgers, Home Movies) and his varying onstage personas, including Sal Lupo, a cabbie from Canarsie, who is one of my favorite comedic creations of all time. (Check out a video below.) When Rififi died, this masterpiece of a show died with it. As did a large piece of my soul. It sucked.
Flash forward to February 27, 2014; Greg Johnson and Larry Murphy joined forces again for a new weekly comedy showcase called Myrtle Comedy With Larry Murphy and Greg Johnson taking place at Splitty (415 Myrtle Ave, Brooklyn). The premier installment featured Jon Benjamin, Eugene Mirman, James Patterson, and Kate Berlant. Nearly six months later and the show has been going on strong ever since, bringing with it a vibe that I thought died when Rififi shuttered its doors. It's a shame I never mentioned it earlier because the line-ups have been absolutely stacked. Their next installment is happening on Thursday (7/10) and features Jon Glaser, Jessi Klein, Giulia Rossi, and a secret special guest. The show is only 5 bucks. They're there every Thursday with mammoth line-ups, so if you can't make it tomorrow don't flip out. There's always next week. And the week after. And hopefully every Thursday from now until Brooklyn becomes property of Disney.
Sal Lupo video below...
Jon Benjamin / Michael Che / Jon Glaser @ The Bell House 6/13/2014
On Friday (6/13), The Bell House played host to the release party show for A Night at Whiplash, a live movie documenting a single night of NYC's most legendary weekly comedy show Whiplash, which takes place Monday nights at the UCB Theater in Chelsea.
It wouldn't be a Klaus Kinski outing if mother nature didn't deliver a horrendous onslaught of earth shatteringly shitty weather, and boy did she deliver the night of Friday the 13th. Black-green skies, crazy bolts of lightning, long, rolling peals of thunder... the works. Luckily I managed to get to the venue during breaks in the storm, but the rain was so horrendous that the Bell House flooded and needed to be quickly wrung out prior to the show. Hats off to whoever sopped up all that rain water because aside from a few minute wet spots (including the one on the front of my pants lol jk) you never would have known that they had a defcon 5 water situation on their hands just prior to the show.
But enough about wet spots. I got to the show a minute or two into the great Leo Allen's awesome lead-off set. I think I've seen Leo more times than any other comic, and the dude consistently delivers. Leo is the weekly host of Whiplash, so you can, literally, once a week, see this man dominate live. And I'm not even talking about the many bills he pops up on otherwise. He is the man. Leo was followed by Jared Logan who is easily one of the best comics in the biz nowadays. Super high energy, sharp as a tack, and flippin' loud, the dude's a machine of awesomeness. Jared literally performs at least once a night somewhere in NYC when he's not on the road, so I highly suggest you click on his hyperlinked name a sentence or two back and check out his calendar and make it to one of his shows. That dude's going places. Trust me.
Jared was followed by dance duo Monica Bill Barnes and Anna Bass who did a really well-executed, high energy, and, at times, extremely funny dance number to a James Brown song. I was sort of vexed as to how something like this would fit into the evening's line-up, especially since dance really is not my wheelhouse at all. But I loved it! They were great! And they really kept the momentum going.
H. John Benjamin was next and, as usual, his set was odd but extremely funny. He kicked things off by doing a dance number of his own to the same song Monica and Anna did, only he dragged some poor girl onto the stage to continue the dance while he took her seat. After upbraiding her for not performing as well as he expected, he riffed for a while before finally reading text exchanges between his 11-year old son and his friend. Truly awkward and hilarious, though, man, that poor kid.
The next act up was Aparna Nancherla who I had never seen before but have been hearing volumes of good stuff about lo these past few months. All the positive things I've been hearing and reading about her are beyond well-founded; she's the best. I cannot remember the last time I have seen a comic do "self-deprecating" so well. Her unassuming appearance hides an unbelievable level of snark and biting wit and as her set progressed, the mask of delicacy started to slip. It was awesome. Her CV is already pretty stacked but this kid is going places. Do go to her website and check out one of her many upcoming NY C area shows. Trust me.
Comedy veteran Jon Glaser was next and he definitely proceeded with a very Jon Glaser signature set about soccer and, well, stories about people with papercuts on their penises and how they got them. Glaser is another comic I have seen more than just about anyone else and, as usual, the material seemed totally off-the-cuff and unrehearsed, but completely hilarious nonetheless. The final act was Michael Che, a comedian who, right now, is so on top of his game it's ridiculous. Through relentless gigging and rock solid material, Che is basically world renowned at this point. As a new recurring correspondent, Che made his Daily Show debut earlier this month and was a fantastic headliner and a world class wrap up to a phenomenal show.
by Klaus Kinski
The New York City comedy landscape is peppered with tons of great recurring comedy shows. One of the heaviest hitters in the land of recurring comedy shows has got to be Whiplash. Hosted by Klaus Kinski All Time Gold Pass Favorite Leo Allen, Whiplash takes place every Monday night at 11 PM at the UCB Theater in Chelsea. Each week, Whiplash treats attendees to solid line-ups consisting of the biggest names and most promising rising stars in comedy. Big fish like Aziz Ansari (who's playing a way bigger than UCB Theater venue called Madison Square Garden), Jim Gaffigan, Zach Galifianakis, Louis CK, Chris Rock and more have graced the Whiplash stage on several occasions.
Back on September 9, 2013, Whiplash endeavored to bring the Whiplash experience to the masses by doing a live concert documentary. Welp, that sucker, titled A Night at Whiplash, is finally "in the can" as they say in Hollywood and to celebrate the fine Whiplash folks are throwing an epic release party on Friday (6/13) at The Bell House. As one would expect from a Whiplash related event, the line-up for the evening is STACKED. Attendees will thrill to host Leo Allen as he welcomes guests Jon Benjamin, Jon Glaser, Michael Che, Aparna Nancherla, Jared Logan, and a dance thingy by Monica Bill Barnes and Anna Bass. "Will there be special guests?" you ask? Well, doy, yeah, probably. Use your head kid. Anyhow, a smattering of tickets are on sale and you gotta believe me this show is going to go so far above and beyond the price of admission you won't be able to stop tweeting about it for the rest of your life.
Check out a trailer for A Night at Whiplash below...
When Superchunk were in NYC for a couple Bowery Ballroom shows and a Fallon performance earlier this year, they headed to Brooklyn DIY spot Shea Stadium to film the video for I Hate Music track "Void." In addition to the band themselves, the video features comedian/actors Jon Glaser and Jon Benjamin, plus members of multiple local bands including Ava Luna, Heliotropes, Aye Nako, Lost Boy?, Weird Womb, and others. Were you in it? Check out the new video below.
Superchunk also have a number of dates coming up, including SPIN's Year In Music Event which happens in NYC on December 10 at Music Hall of Williamsburg with Danny Brown and Charli XCX. It's a semi-private show, but we're giving away a few pairs of tickets via Twitter. Details on how to enter the contest along with all tour dates and the video, below...
photos by David Andrako
Bridgett Everett & Nick Kroll / Kurt & Kristen / Stephin Merritt
There was much laughter to be had at the 2013 Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival last weekend at The Bell House and Union Hall. We already posted pictures from the first two nights and here's a set from Saturday (9/28) and Sunday (9/29). Saturday at The Bell House brought "Hot Tub with Kurt And Kristen" back to New York (both Braunohler and Schaal live in LA now) with appearances by Nick Turner, Nick Kroll, Leo Allen, and Bridgett Everett (whose new show is debuting at Joe's Pub soon); and over at Union Hall it was "Comics We Hope Don't Move To LA (Though We Understand There Is Much More Work There)."
Then on Sunday, the EMCF celebrated the Season 4 premiere of Bob's Burgers with cast members Eugene Mirman, Kristen Schaal, Jon Benjamin, Larry Murphy, Hannibal Buress, and Jon Glaser. Stephin Merrit -- who didn't even appear at The Bell House when Future Bible Heroes (a band he actually is in) played -- also came out with Kenny Mellman to sing one of the show's songs, "Electric Love." Over at Union Hall on Sunday it was "Creaghead & Company EMCF Edition: Thoughtfully Included Since It Was Scheduled Here Anyway."
Pics from nights 1 & 2 are here. More pics from nights 3 & 4 of EMCF 2013 below...
by Klaus Kinski
There's a fantastic recurring NYC-based comedy/talk show that I think I may have mentioned here once in passing but I am totally zoning out to a Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here Trance Remix CD and can't muster the energy to use the search bar staring me in the face on the BV home page. [Ed: you did, Klaus.] The show is called Running Late With Scott Rogowsky and it has taken place within the confines of places like The Pit, 92Y Tribeca, and, more recently, Galapagos Art Space.
Running Late with Scott Rogowsky is NYC's only live talk show hosted by Scott Rogowsky combining the traditional, familiar late-night format -- monologue, house band, sketches, celebrity interviews, musicians/comedians to close -- with a fresh, millennial sensibility (whatever the hell that means). New York Magazine calls it "the comedy talk show for the Internet age." I call it "The Chevy Chase Show" meets "The Pat Sajack Show" meets "The Magic Hour." Or Cavett meets Conan meets Rupert Pupkin. Oh, and my 64-year-old dad Marty is my sidekick.His roster of past guests is truly staggering and boasts names like Chris Elliott, Rachel Dratch, Reggie Watts, Michael Showalter, David Wain, Judah Friedlander, Janeane Garofalo, Big Ang, R.L. Stine, Jonathan Ames, A.J. Jacobs, Chris Barron, Jean Grae, Todd Barry, and more. The next installment of Running Late will take place at Galapagos on Thursday March 28 and will feature David Cross (who recently appeared at the 92nd Street Y), Andrew WK, the great Alan Zweibel, and Scott Wiener of Scott's Pizza Tours. Andrew WK will perform Party Hard with the Running Late band and maybe a few more jams! Scott Wiener will be giving away pizza! David's wife Amber might make the scene! Legends David Cross and Alan Zweibel will be dropping knowledge down our gullets! Tickets are on sale now so get em while you can.
Future Running Late's are already starting to pop up on the radar, so mark your whatever-you-mark-to-save-dates because on Thursday April 11 (Merry Klausmas!) Scott welcomes pale giant comedian Jim Gaffigan, Pulitzer Prize winning author/journalist Anna Quindlen, and more! On Thursday April 25 Scott welcomes Jon Glaser and more! So keep your dead-eyes on the Running Late website.
Sate your appetite for Running Late with some xtreme coverage on Thrillist and watch a couple "Scott's Pizza Tours" below.
by Bill Pearis
Jon Glaser's Adult Swim series Delocated, a fake reality show about a guy in the Witness Protection Program, was one of the strangest, funniest shows of the last 10 years. (I thought so at least.) Last week the show sailed off into the sunset with a one-off series finale, but Jon will take one more trip to the bone zone, live on stage in NYC. The "The Delocated Witness Protection Program Variety Show" happens at Music Hall of Williamsburg on March 29 and features castmembers Eugene Mirman, Todd Barry, Angie Pontani, Steve Cirbus and Janeane Garofalo will be be on hand, as will a surprise music guest. What exactly will go down is anyone's guess, but we can only hope there will be a potato skins bar.
Tickets for this extravaganza go on sale on Wednesday (3/13) at noon. Some choice Delocated clips below...
Bob Mould just debuted his new video for "Star Machine," which is from last year's loud and highly-enjoyable LP, The Silver Age. The video was filmed at Cake Shop and was directed by Jon Glaser who you may know from Delocated or, most recently, HBO's Girls (he was Laird, the junkie). What starts as a fun "bring your kids to work" day turns sour when drummer Jon Wurster brings marrital problems instead. Watch it below.
Bob and the band will be in NYC next month when his tour hits Bowery Ballroom on February 26 and 27 and tickets are still available. The band will stick around to appear on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on February 28 to perform "Star Machine." Bob also just announced a few new tour dates and those are listed below.
photos by PSquared Photography
YLT w/ Andrew Bird / the Jons / Titus @ Maxwell's, 12/14/2012
Titus Andronicus opened the night with a roar -- I always read about them as being a punk-rock group, and maybe they are in the old-fashioned (and my favorite) definition of that term as "indescribable." Patrick made the only mention from the stage of the night about Connecticut, which makes him stronger than me. A great set, closing with the breathtaking one-two of "Titus Andronicus Forever" and the seasonal favorite "Roadrunner"...On the penultimate night of Hanukkah (and a bad vibe day to put it mildly), Yo La Tengo did their best to keep spirits high, with special guest Andrew Bird (as speculated) sitting in on violin for the entirety of their set, and guest vocalist Devendra Banhart (who narrates the Tim Maia short film which screens for free in Brooklyn Sunday) singing for the encore. (Setlist is below.)
...If you spend any time around the three of us, sooner or later you'll hear one or everybody burst into "Acappella Ghostbusters," as made famous by Jon Glaser and Jon Benjamin's Soundtrackappella (or is it Soundtracappella -- I forgot to ask, but that's ok, they'd have given me two different answers). Ten years after Hanukkah 2002, we asked them if they agreed with us it was time for a return engagement. - [YLT]
As speculated and then expected, fellow New Jersyians Titus Andronicus made for one of the highest profile openers of the week, and Jons Benjamin and Glaser brought the funny.
The night's Charity was Waves for Water's Hurricane Sandy Relief Initiative and Ira Kaplan made the mix CD. Tonight's the last night of their Hanukkah run -- who will be the openers? UPDATE: Teenage Fanclub's Norman Blake and Gaylord Fields open the final night.
More pictures from Night 7 are below, along with YLT's setlist.
It's that time of year again, judging by the posts on this site today, with lots of Holiday-themed shows coming up. Unsurprisingly, The Bell House lives for this kind of yuletide cheer and has about a dozen or so holiday shows lined up in the next month. Here's a rundown.
First is the Everything's Terrible! Holiday Special 2012 which happens December 12 (tickets). If you think the Star Wars Holiday Special is the worst Christmas-related thing television has ever birthed, the Everything's Terrible folks will likely prove you wrong. For an early taste, there's a trailer for the crap extravanga below, along with a list of all dates for this ironic roadshow which is touring both coasts at the same time.
On the next night (12/13) it's The Party Machine's 2nd Annual Holiday Benefit Blowout with hosts Arden Myrin and Lisa Delarios with guests Jon Glaser, Chris Gethard, Sheng Wang, Janeane Garofalo and Adira Amram & the Experience with proceeds going to Badass Brooklyn Animal Rescue and Red Cross Disaster Relief for victims of Hurricane Sandy. Tickets are $12 and still available but probably not for long -- don't delay.
More funny stuff (with music): On December 16, Fred Armisen hosts The Snow Ball Ball: A Winter Formal To Benefit 826NYC, with guest DJs Tunde Adebimpe and Peter Hale of Here We Go Magic. Tickets are still available.
And for ska fans there's The Slackers Christmas Celebration on 12/22 which also celebrates the band's 20th anniversary. The show also features The Frightnrs, Sammy K, and Caz & the Day Laborers. Tickets are still available.
Wait there's still more holiday fun at The Bell House: for burlesque fans there's Doc Wasabassco's Birthday Celebration And All-Holiday Party on 12/14 (tickets); for the wizards and muggles out there, you can celebrate at The Harry Potter Yule Ball 2012 on 12/15 with Harry And The Potters, Potter Puppet Pals, The Whomping Willows, and The Home Alones (tickets); later that night (12/15) it's The Rub's Holiday party with Eleven & Ayres and special guests Kon & 7L' and for those who need some twang in their stocking, on December 16 it's The Suzi Shelton Band's Fourth Annual Rockin' Holiday Party with Amelia Robinson From Mil's Trills (tickets).
Everything Is Terrible trailer and flyer for the Snowball Ball are below.
by Klaus Kinski
I am going to spare you my usual editorializing and get right to the meat of the situation here. Basically, there is an absolute shit-ton of comedy and benefit type shows coming to the Bell House. I hope you like brass tacks, because I'm going to get right down to them.
Hey, did you get tickets for PROFESSOR BLASTOFF LIVE with Hosts Tig Notaro, Kyle Dunnigan, David Huntsberger plus a special guest? It happens at the Bell House on Saturday November 17 (aka this Saturday!) and, man, it sure as hell sold out.
On Wednesday (11/21), the Bell House will play host to The Musical Extravaganza to Restore Red Hook! starring Rosanne Cash and featuring Alex Battles and the Whisky Spitter Rebellion and B61: A film by Michael Buscemi. Here's more:
The evening kicks off with a square dance, hosted by NYC Barn Dance. Roseanne Cash will headline the evening, and Jesse Lenat, John Pinamonti and the Brotherhood of the Whiskey Spitter Rebellion will play. Michael Buscemi will screen his new film on the bus that runs through Red Hook, called "B61."Tickets are on sale now.
This show will benefit Restore Red Hook. Restore Red Hook aims to raise funds to help the small businesses of Red Hook, Brooklyn reopen their doors as soon as possible after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy.
On Sunday, November 25th at 8:00pm, as mentioned, the Bell House and Pretty Good Friends team up for a Hurricane Relief Benefit featuring A Very Funny 'F*ck You' To Sandy. The show will be hosted by Eugene Mirman and feature comedy from a powerhouse line up including Jon Glaser, Wyatt Cenac, Mike Birbiglia , Michael Che and more. I am vexed that this show isn't sold out, so get your tickets now!!
Wyatt Cenac at Prospect Park, August 2012 (more by Jessica Amaya)
And speaking of Wyatt Cenac, check him out a little less than a month later at the much smaller Union Hall when, on Friday December 21, he'll be part of the comedy roster at The Afterlife Comedy Show. The show is gang-hosted by Emily Heller, George Gordon, Erin Judge, and Josh Gondelman. The show is a measly eight bucks and besides Wyatt and the awesome hosts and hostess there will be more comedy to boot!
On Friday November 30 Nick Kroll, one of my all time favorite comedians, takes the stage for a headlining show at the Bell House. Sadly, this show sold out faster than a speeding bullet. I am still recovering from wounds sustained during a self-flagellation sesh I performed on myself upon realizing this had happened. But keep your eye on the Bell House twitter feed in case they release more tickets. Or, go hang outside the venue before the show because I promise you there will be many-a nimrod out there with extra tickets they'd sell for face.
Allow me to go ahead and continue to mention another great Wyatt Cenac related show, this one happening at the Bell House on Wednesday December 5th; for on Wednesday December 5th you can thrill to the THE TELL YOUR FRIENDS! THE CONCERT FILM! RELEASE SHOW/SANDY BENEFIT (caps totally necessary). Join host Liam McEneaney as he brings to the stage Wyatt Cenac, Aaron Freeman (formerly Gene Ween), Christian Finnegan, Victor Varnado, A Brief View of The Hudson, Rob Paravonian , and more! The guests WILL be quite special, your money is going to a good cause, and it's not sold out yet. Get yer tix now!
And don't forget about Wyatt's weekly show "Night Train" which happens at Littlefield.
On Thursday December 6 the Bell House will be the site of two live podcast recordings of How Did This Get Made? A Live Podcast With Paul Scheer, Jason Mantzoukas and June Diane Raphael. The early show went on sale and promptly sold out, but they added a late show (Thank Cod!) and tix for that are currently still available. Kaboom!
Flash forward a week later to Thursday December 13 and the Bell House will play host to The Party Machine's 2nd Annual Holiday Benefit Blowout! The show is hosted by the EXTREMELY funny and wonderful Arden Myrin and Lisa Delarios and features and atomic line-up of comedians including Jon Glaser, Chris Gethard, Sheng Wang, Janeane Garofalo and Adira Amram and the Experience. Tickets are only $12 and it will sell out, so git along l'il doggie and buy some tix!
Then on Wednesday December 19th catch TODD BARRY 25TH ANNIVERSARY IN COMEDY SHOW featuring Janeane Garofalo, Ted Alexandro, Jim Gaffigan and more! Thanks to that skank hurricane Sandy, Todd's first attempt at a 25th anniversary show was left in ruins so this is your make up date people. No excuses. This show WILL SELL OUT, so get your tickets right this very second. This show is a benefit for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Two days later on Friday December 21, toddle on over to the Bell House for John Hodgman: That Is All. December 21, 2012 is the last day of the Mayan long count calendar and many buffoons and dipshits are prophesizing that this day marks certain doom for mankind. Along with musician Cynthia Hopkins and other special guests, Hodgman will count down to midnight, when his predictions will be proved TRUE! Or else FALSE! Tickets are on sale, but not for long! I prophesize a sell out!
Eugene Mirman at his 2012 Comedy Fest (more by David Andrako)
Eugene Mirman, who performed at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin earlier this week (11/4), continues to do his 'Pretty Good Friends' show at Union Hall every Sunday, and he'll also be doing one at The Bell House on November 25 to benefit Hurricane Sandy Relief dubbed "A Very Funny 'Fuck You' To Sandy." In addition to Mirman, the lineup for the show includes Jon Glaser, Wyatt Cenac, Mike Birbiglia, Michael Che, and more. Tickets are on sale now and 100% of proceeds will be donated to the Brooklyn Recovery Fund.
In related news, Eugene Mirman's animated FOX show with Kristen Schaal and others, Bob's Burgers, will be returning for a fourth season.
Eugene is also one of the guests at the Comedy for NYWC show at Highline Ballroom on December 2 with Janeane Garofalo and Dave Hill. But as mentioned, Mike Birbligia, who plays the Bell House show with Mirman, is no longer listed on the lineup of that show, but "special guests" still are.
As mentioned, Wyatt Cenac began his new weekly 'Night Train' comedy show at Littlefield last night (11/5), replacing Kristen Schaal and Kurt Braunohler's now-defunct 'Hot Tub' show that used to happen on Mondays at the Brooklyn venue.
Speaking of Janeane Garofalo, she'll be at Tell Your Friends at Union Hall on Wednesday (11/7) with Liam McEneaney (who hosts an election viewing party at The Bell House tonight), Frank Conniff, Tanya O'Debra, host Victory Varnado, and house band AM to AM.
photos by David Andrako
Eugene Mirman / Sarah Silverman at The Bell House 9/13/2012
The fifth-annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival kicked off last night at The Bell House with an evening titled "We Appreciate Ourselves: The Five Year Anniversary Celebration of The Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival" that featured a VIP herring room, an opportunity to throw water balloons at a slam poet, plus the comedy stylings of John Mulaney, Delocated's Jon Glaser, Todd Barry, surprise guests Sarah Silverman and Jim Gaffigan, plus Mirman himself.
Tonight (9/14) the fest continues at the Bell House and Union Hall with the sold-out "Star Talk Live" which will feature Sarah Silverman again (she's busy this fall) as well as an unannounced line-up of cool celeb types. More pictures from Thursday night are below.
photos by Bryan Bruchman
As previously mentioned, The Sea & Cake, Mac McCaughan, Jon Benjamin & Jon Glaser stopped by at Maxwell's last night for Yo La Tengo's first of eight Hanukkah shows at Maxwell's. Who will be there tonight? UPDATE: It was Spent
Here are some pictures from the first show. They continue below...
Yo La Tengo Hanukkah 2011 Night 1 (photo by Jack2point0)
Yo La Tengo played their first of eight Hanukkah shows at Maxwell's last night (12/20). We have a full set of pictures coming, but in the meantime, check out last night's setlist complete with openers/guests listed, via Frank & Earthy, below...
UPDATE: Mike's show starts at 8:30 and tickets go on sale at noon.
I don't know what time it starts and ends, but if it's done early enough you can then head to UCB West for this week's edition of Whiplash with Leo Allen and guests.
Alternatively, you can spend your Monday night with Kurt and Kristen in Brooklyn at Littlefield. Their guests at Hot Tub this week include Michael Showalter.
Head back to UCB West on Wednesday after work for a live WFMU broadcast of "7 Second Delay" with guests Lou Reed and Suzanne Vega.
UPDATE: Lou Reed is also making an appearance at Book Court tonight.
In other "live" comedy news, tickets are on sale for Star Talk Live at The Bell House on Sunday, December 18th. The lineup includdes Neil de Grasse Tyson, Eugene Mirman, and John Hodgman.
One night after that is the Hot Tub Holiday edition at Littlefield with Kurt, Kristen, Jon Glaser, Hannibal Buress, Adam the Real Man, and musical guest River City Extension.
Speaking of Hannibal Buress, he opened two shows for Aziz Ansari at the Bell House on Saturday night. We posted pictures.
Speaking of the Bell House, Rocket from the Tombs plays there tonight!
Tom Morello @ Newport Folk Fest 2009 (more by Jim Brueckner)
Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello has announced plans to perform at the Occupy Wall Street protest at noon [today] in Manhattan. Morello, who has previously performed at the Occupy Los Angeles rally, will play a solo set as the Nightwatchman.Today (10/13) is also the first day of NY Comic Con & Anime Fest over at the Javits Center. Tom Morello performs in the convention center tonight with Z-Trip as part of the con's kickoff concert.
"The Nightwatchman will Occupy Wall Street [today] at noon, adding one more voice to the growing chorus of millions demanding economic justice at home and around the globe," Morello tells Rolling Stone. "And I'll be playing some songs. Likely in the rain."
Morello will be the third major act to perform at the protest. Neutral Milk Hotel's Jeff Mangum and rapper Talib Kweli have recently played impromptu sets at the protest site. Earlier this week, Kanye West visited the scene, but did not perform. [Rolling Stone]
We get why the Rage Against the Machine guitarist would show up at Occupy Wall St, but why Comic Con? Well, Comixcorner.com says:
Tom Morello's graphic novel Orchid, which tells the tale of a 16-year-old street prostitute in a dystopian future, will be released in twelve issues through Dark Horse Comics will be on sale October 12th. Orchid features a variant cover by the well-known and influential street artist Shepard Fairey, with interior art by Scott Hepburn (Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic).Other guests at Comic Con include Jon Glaser, David Cross, Chris Elliot, Carrie Brownstein (who is in tour with Wild Flag), Jon Benjamin, Janeane Garofalo, Judah Friedlander, Kevin Smith, Patton Oswalt, Fred Armisen, Mark Hamill, and many more. (Fred and Carrie will be promoting Portlandia)
"Orchid is part Suicide Girl, part Joan of Arc, who becomes the Spartacus of Whores in a story that merges the epic scope of Lord of the Rings with the politics of street terrorism." - Tom Morello
Headlined by DJ Z-Trip, the concert is free to all VIP's and 4-Day ticket holders BUT seating is first come, first served and will be extremely limited due to size of the auditorium and popularity of the event. Ultimate Access, Special Access and Anime Access VIP ticket holders will be guaranteed to get into the show first; then, 4-Day ticket holders will be let in until the auditorium is full. The concert is open to all 4-Day ticket holders on a first come, first served basis and we cannot guarantee that all 4-Day ticket holders that want to attend the show will be able to get in.
"I'm stoked and honored to be playing alongside Tom Morello at the New York Comic Con. He's one of my favorite guitarists of all time, and I've always admired the level of consciousness he brings to the table. This show is gonna be great. Can't wait to read his new comic too." - DJ Z-Trip
Tom Morello is appearing courtesy of Dark Horse Comics, New York Comic Con and Midtown Comics - who will be selling Orchid #1 exclusively at the Kick-Off Concert.
photos by David Andrako
Jon Glaser as Bobby Tisdale
After kicking off on Thursday, the Eugene Mirman Festival (which ends tonight/Sunday) continued on Friday with two shows, "A Night Of Very Likeable Comedians" at Union Hall and "Invite Them Up" at The Bell House. The Union Hall show featured standup from Tom Allen, Tom Shillue, Kurt Braunohler, Seth Herzog, John Mulaney and Jane Borden. Kurt and John also headed over to The Bell House to perform alongside Eugene Mirman, Slovin and Allen, Janeane Garofalo and Jon Glaser, who filled in as/for Invite Them Up host Bobby Tisdale. A set of pictures from the show at The Bell House continues below...
by Klaus Kinski
It goes without saying that New York Fucking City is the best fucking city in the fucking galaxy. Name some attributes of another city (and I am sure people *cough*commenters*cough* will) and any New Yorker worth his or her salt will gladly, after they're done laughing hysterically, verbally pants your claims and make you realize how much time you just wasted with your nonsense. Everything here is better, and we have more of it. End. Of. Fucking. Story. Among our better-than-everywhere-else attributes is our Comedy scene. And one way we articulate and reinforce this attribute is by having several comedy shows happening across this city every night of the week.
One of NYC's biggest stand-out weekly shows is Tell Your Friends! which happens in the basement of a place called Lolita Bar (almost) every goddamned Tuesday. Tell Your Friends! is the brainchild of the talented Liam McEneaney and it has been bringing some of the most incredible line-ups to its basement audiences for over 6 years. Conceived as a showcase that danced somewhere between open mic territory and some of NYCs other smaller, more intimate alt rooms, Tell Your Friends! was devised as sort of a "comedy workout room;" a place where comedians could workshop new material without all the hassles and limitations of standard open mics. No, Tell Your Friends! wasn't the first place to do this type of thing; 15 years ago NYC had Eating It at Luna Lounge, Klaus favorite Patrick Borelli set up shop at the Gershwin Hotel, and, of course, there was Invite Them Up at Rififi where Eugene Mirman and Bobby Tisdale basically wrote the book on how smaller, independent comedy showcases should be run until its demise in 2008. Invite Them Up took their backroom comedy debauchery to the next level when they did three nights of recording at Pianos for a 3 CD/1 DVD set that was released by Comedy Central Records. Incidentally, now that Invite Them Up is long gone (unless you count the upcoming Invite Them Up night at the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival), that CD/DVD set serves as an extremely important document of just how bonkers and diverse that era in comedy really was.
Like Invite Them Up, Tell Your Friends! has brought their presence in the comedy world to the next level with the release of Tell Your Friends! The Concert Film!. Shot at the Bell House, Liam McEneaney says
I had this idea that since I wanted to do a movie with standup comedians, comedians who had gotten their start outside the traditional comedy club scene, it shouldn't be shot as a typical comedy special. I sent Victor (Varnado) clips from concert films I felt should serve as the template, Woodstock, The Last Waltz, Stop Making Sense, The Beatles First Visit To America... Films that didn't just point a camera at a performance, but got you onstage with the acts themselves. And that didn't just record a concert, but really encapsulated a moment in history. Ultimately, we narrowed our influence down to Woodstock, and The Last Waltz, and used those more as our guides.This epic piece of greatness features Reggie Watts, Kristen Schaal, Kurt Braunohler, Christian Finnegan, Leo Allen, Rob Paravonian, Nick Nace, Ann Enzminger, Marc Maron, and more. WANNA SEE IT!? Well SketchFest NYC is proud to present the New York City Premiere of Tell Your Friends! The Concert Film! at the Paley Center for Media on Thursday, September 22nd, 2011; at 7:30pm. After the movie there will be a panel moderated by Liam and feature Kristen Schaal, Kurt Braunohler, Christian Finnegan, Leo Allen, Neal Brennan, Jon Glaser, and Victor Varnado. Tickets are $10 for members and $15 for the general public UPDATE: and $8.00 to BV readers!
In unrelated comedy news, don't forget that FYF Fest is Saturday September 3rd in Los Angeles and features a pretty toupee-spinning bunch of comedy check out the full comedy line-up below.
by Klaus Kinski
Kristen Schaal & Eugene Mirman (more by David Andrako)
When the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival reared it's beautiful head for the first time in 2008, the sheer magnitude of the thing was really and truly mind-blowing; 10 epic shows, 4 nights, 2 venues. And for reasons which I can't fully explain because I don't quite understand them myself, I thought the festival would be a one-off thing. The whole thing had a slight whiff of irony, like it was lampooning the very concept of a comedy festival. Then the sucker was back in 2009 with a similar formula; 10 epic shows, 4 nights, 2 venues, and loads of shiver-inducing top-shelf talent. "Huh," I thought, "Maybe this really is something I can look forward to as an annual event." Then, BAM, Fall 2010 comes around and with it The 2010 Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival. That time around, the festival included The Rock Shop as a third venue (note: did you get your 8/27 Ted Leo tix yet?) and featured yet another magnificent roster of talent.
Well folks, it's nearly Fall 2011 and I have some really bad news for the humorless, hummus-eating commenters out there and really GREAT news for everyone else; The Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival is BACK and will take over the Bell House and Union Hall from September 15-18, 2011. And as with previous years, the 2011 Fest is sure to blow the toupee or merkin right off your body. Expect appearances from H. Jon Benjamin, Kristen Schaal, Jon Glaser as Bobby Tisdale, Aisha Tyler, Matt Thompson, Adam Reed, Jessica Walters, Jon Hodgman, Ira Glass and way way way way way more. Brace yourself, the whole schedule with ticket info is below. Check out the coverage and news from past fests to get an idea how truly remarkable they have been.
Hey. If you think I'm done talking about Eugene Mirman, you are so fucking wrong bro. Because there is another important aspect of the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival that I've mentioned before but absolutely bears repeating; The Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival Kickstarter page. No, Eugene didn't have a DIY venue packed with $40K worth of stuff that he forgot to insure that was subsequently robbed. The Festival costs a lot of money to produce, and the talent and people behind the scenes bust their asses to make it work for little or no money. The purpose of the Kickstarter is to amass a solid kitty (a pool of money, especially one to which a number of people have contributed for a designated purpose) that Festival organizers can use to produce a series of shows that will knock your socks off. Ticket costs can only cover so much. I donated because I am not an idiot who thinks this money is going to line some doofus' pockets; I donated because I know everyone who sees these shows will end up reaping the rewards of our collective generosity. Currently at 81%, The Kickstarter Campaign ends on AUGUST 17th, which is like so soon, so please donate and make this an amazing festival for EVERYONE.
In other Mirman-related news, be advised that there is a Pretty Good Friends 5 Year Anniversary Show happening at The Bell House on Sunday, August 21 at 7:30pm featuring the great David Cross, AD Miles, and more. Tickets are $15 and are currently on sale. Get em while they last. And if you find yourself in riot stricken London at some point between October 5th and October 15th, catch one of many Pretty Good Friends shows happening at the Soho Theater. Tickets are on sale. Don't be a pratt, wanker. Shag baby! Oh, behave! Don't give me that codswallop!
Mirman Fest schedule below...