Month: November 2005

Denis Leary’s Merry F#%$in’ Christmas

Denis Leary’s view on the holidays ain’t so jolly. Go figure. A couple of weeks ago, Leary, his band and his 15-year-old son, Jack, performed the actor/comedian’s song, "Merry F#%$in’ Christmas" as the finale at Cam Neely’s Comics Come Home benefit. But it looks and sounds much more subversive when it opens "Denis Leary’s Merry F#%$in’ Christmas" special Nov. 27 on Comedy Central. "Live, it’s more of a jaunty singalong," Leary told me this week over the phone on a break from voiceover work on Ice Age 2. If by jaunty, you mean an opening verse such as, "Old Saint Nick’s got bourbon breath, it’s so cold you could catch your death, a cop sold me some crystal meth, it’s a merry, f#%$in’ Christmas." "Really, we’re just going for the ultimate anti-Christmas song," Leary said. "Then I thought, this is really going to have a great animated video for it. That was the seed for the idea that led to the Christmas special." Cue the claymation! "It’s a throwback to Rankin-Bass and all that stuff we know from growing up." Leary said Comedy Central will "bleep" one version of his special, then air the uncensored version sometime later at night (part of what the network calls it’s after-midnight Secret Stash series). How they’ll bleep it is another matter. Some skits involve William Shatner, Charlie Murphy, Chris Elliott and the...

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Sarah Silverman is magic

Sarah Silverman checks her rack out during our interview in Boston a couple of weeks ago. Yeah, yeah, you’ve read a whole lot of media love for comedian Sarah Silverman this month as her film, Jesus Is Magic, (trailer on this link is NSFW) opened in cinemas. Lots of reporters saying the same thing and quoting the same jokes. Not this joker. At least I get Sarah to open up about different things and say new witty things. And I remembered to record some of it for online posterity. Read on, and click the Boston Herald headline link for access to audio clips and a photo gallery. Hear me ask Sarah about why she doesn’t own her own domain name: ‘I know I should.’ ‘Jesus’ is saving Silverman’s irreverent humor for posterity (Boston Herald)Sarah Silverman is sweet and endearing offstage.That makes her taboo-crossing humor that much more powerful onstage and onscreen – a formula that has drawn comparisons to Lenny Bruce and Larry David.But the 34-year-old comedian and actress from Bedford, N.H., doesn’t get the latter reference.“I don’t really see myself in any way like Larry David, except that I let myself be unlikable,” Silverman said.Even then, she does so with a sly smile.“I’ll tickle your back until you fall asleep while I’m feeding you these horrible things,” she said. “I’ll give you a nice warm sponge bath while...

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Robby Roadsteamer gets viral

Say hello to Robby Roadsteamer. Ha! Just ask the comedian/musician, as I did, if he’s having the Best Week Ever. When VH1’s "Best Week Ever" writers looked for a way to make fun of Kevin Federline’s aspiring rap career, they linked to Robby Roadsteamer’s online music video "I Put a Baby in You!"But don’t expect Roadsteamer to claim this is his best week ever."Every week is the best week ever," he said. "I’m blessed. I have the best band in Boston. I have the best body in Boston."And the women."Look at this month alone. We cut our first album, which will be out through Mass Appeal. We’re putting out our first DVD. I’m doing WBCN (104.1 FM). I’m doing the Middle East downstairs New Year’s Eve with my band. All I have to do is blink at a girl and I’m at third base."I used to have to take girls to Hilltop . . . now I can go to Arby’s."No one ever accused Roadsteamer, who put the rumble in this year’s WBCN Rock ’N’ Roll Rumble, of being a nice guy.He antagonizes both his audience and his keyboard player, Nick D’Amico, while belting out tunes with a growling swagger."I’m the type of guy, I walk into a room . . . I’m not leaving unless I’m working somebody’s windpipe or I’ve gotten some girl pregnant," Roadsteamer said. "Johnny...

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Al Franken comes to town

The last time Al Franken was in Boston – Election Day 2004 – he and his Air America Radio crew were all set to celebrate with the Kerry-Edwards campaign.That didn’t turn out so well. But the setting provided an apt way to open Franken’s new book, “The Truth (With Jokes),” in which he continues to bash the Bush administration and the Republican right in print as he does on the air.Franken returns to the Hub on Tuesday for a live broadcast of “The Al Franken Show,” heard locally on WKOX-AM (1200) and WXKS-AM (1430) from noon to 3 p.m. weekdays, followed by a nighttime book signing at the Charles Hotel in Cambridge.Is coming back bittersweet?“No,” Franken said on the phone from New York City. “Just bitter.”But the news isn’t all bad for the Harvard-educated satirist.His opening hour is the most listened-to period on WKOX, and he continues to gain ground on his nemesis, Rush Limbaugh, among male listeners between 25 and 54.“A lot of people come up to me and say I make them feel better, so they don’t feel alone,” Franken said. “I think now, actually now, I’m hearing from some Republicans who are listening to us and switching over.”He is somewhat amazed by the GOP’s ability to have all their pundits and spokespeople say the same daily message points.“I know that they’re proud of it,” he said....

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Cam Neely on Comics Come Home

Every fall, Bruins great Cam Neely brings some of the Hub’s funniest comedians onstage for Comics Come Home, with Denis Leary hosting his benefit for the Cam Neely Foundation for Cancer Care at Tufts-New England Medical Center.Only now, Neely is a Hall of Famer.Does Leary, who spoke at Neely’s induction ceremony earlier this week, have anything up his sleeve to commemorate the occasion here? "Not as far as I know,” Neely said, already chuckling at the notion."You know, I never know year to year,” he said. "I choose to do it that way so I’m just as surprised as anyone else.”What makes Neely laugh?"Anything from Don Gavin, where you really have to pay attention to what he’s saying, to a guy like Kenny Rogerson. He did a bit on the French and Lance Armstrong at Denis’ charity benefit on the Cape that was phenomenal. It was so hilarious. I don’t want to spoil it, but I hope he does it again,” he said."Obviously, Steve Sweeney, with the way he nails the different characters in Boston. Anything you can laugh about is generally my kind of humor.”Does Neely get embarrassed anymore by what the comics might say about him?"I certainly hope they’ve covered all the bases, in that regard,” he said. "But you never know with these guys.”Any silly memories from past Comics Come Home?"One year, when Dane Cook came...

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