Day: September 9, 2008

Mitch Hedberg, live onstage in Montreal and Cincinnati

At the 2004 Just For Laughs galas in Montreal, Mitch Hedberg presented a set that included some classic jokes, plus a few bits that found their way onto his posthumous CD that’s out today, Do You Believe in Gosh? For a smaller stage look at how Hedberg had a really playful onstage nature about him, watch these clips from Go Bananas in Cincy, courtesy of Hedberg’s family and Rooftop...

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Tonight: Mitch Across America

Tonight, comedy clubs in six cities across America will salute the posthumous release of Do You Believe in Gosh? by the late, great comedian Mitch Hedberg, with "Mitch Across America: One Nation Under Gosh." Read my review of Hedberg’s third CD here. Hedberg’s widow, Lynn Shawcroft, will perform along with Al Madrigal, Todd Glass, Nick Thune and others at the Hollywood Improv on Melrose. Arj Barker, Leo Allen, Rob Cantrell, Todd Barry, Bonnie McFarlane, Marc Maron, Russ Meneve and Tony Camin are on the bill at Comix in New York City. Mary Mack and Shane Mauss are among those toasting Hedberg in his native Minnesota at Acme Comedy Co. Ron Reid hosts a show at Laughs in Kirkland, Wash., near Hedberg’s comedy "home" where he blossomed his unique voice in Seattle, that includes a slide show from his road manager, Greg Chaille, and performances by Billy Wayne Davis, Emmett Montgomery, Dan Carroll, Jesse Case, Joe Vespaziani and Jeremy Whitman. Josh Sneed, Tommy Johnigan, Geoff Tate, Nikki Glaser, Tim Northern, Ryan Dalton and Will Hardesty will help celebrate him at Go Bananas in Cincinnati (Rooftop Comedy has a series of live clips from Hedberg performing at Go Bananas). Brendon Walsh and others honor Hedberg in the clever Cap City club in Austin, Texas. I wrote a column about Hedberg that appears in today’s New York editions of the Metro newspaper....

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Tom Shillue is “Supernormal”

Comedian Tom Shillue took his new one-man show out for a test run on Sunday night at Joe’s Pub in New York City. He called it Supernormal, with a tagline of "stories so normal, they’re radical." And yes, these are very normal, regular, relatable stories for anyone who grew up in a small town, particularly a small town in New England in the 1970s and 1980s. Shillue looks back on his childhood in Norwood, Mass., and weaves tales about his father’s Catholicism, living with his grandmother and his uncle Bobby during college, Thanksgiving dinner, his father-in-law, the blizzard of ’78, boy scout camp and his high school reunion. It was the kind of small town where multiculturalism meant weekly taco night. And Jewish girls. Shillue mines his hometown life for stories as easily and as grandly as if Norwood were his own Lake Wobegon, except it’s all real. Close your eyes and you could imagine listening to Shillue every week on the radio, our generation’s Garrison Keillor, delivering a slice of home. He’s not the most energetic comedian you’ll ever meet, but he remains quite engaging. So much so that 68 minutes of stories flies by. Shillue says his next step is figuring out where to mount a run of the show. When he does, I’ll be sure to let you know how you can catch him. On a...

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