Tom McCaffrey’s first full-length comedy CD, Lou Diamond Phillips?, was recorded on 4/20 at Pianos in New York City and opens with a bit about doing drugs. Despite that coincidence, you don’t need to be a stoner to enjoy McCaffrey’s observational humor and sometimes low, lazy drawl, which includes an odd verbal tic, right? Right? In fact, if you enjoy Todd Barry, you’ll probably also enjoy how McCaffrey smartly takes a small observation and turns it by finding an outrageous counterpoint. Case in point: His take on when someone says they’ve heard a life-changing song. First McCaffrey notes how the people who say this never changed because of the song. You never hear, he says: "I used to work in a deli. Now I’m a Navy Seal, all thanks to Gloria Estefan’s ‘Rhythm is Gonna Get You.’" Then he finds the more outrageous example, with lyrics dispensing medical diagnoses. "Hey man, you heard that song, Steve Johnson’s ‘HIV Positive’? They’ll be like, yeah, yeah…that song changed my life. My life is totally different ever since they released that. I thought it was a weird way for the doctor to break the news to me. But my doctor is Dr. Dre, so…I knew that going in. That’s what you get when you go to the hippest doctor in the world…"
McCaffrey also pokes fun at people being afraid of ghosts or movie serial killers, the phrases "tossed salad" and "keep your shirt on," advertising slogans, groupies, and of course, Lou Diamond Phillips. Although that titular joke is really more about Pamela Anderson, right?
A New York City native, McCaffrey studied drama at the LaGuardia performing arts high school and went to college at Southern Methodist University before initially trying stand-up comedy in Los Angeles. He returned to Manhattan right around 9/11, appeared on Comedy Central’s Premium Blend, has contributed to The Onion, and has a track on the Invite Them Up CD/DVD. This 53-minute CD is not only McCaffrey’s first full recording, but also the debut for the Brooklyn-based label ItTakesALotToLaugh Records. If their goal is to give a voice to underrated comedians, then this is a good start.