The Road to Stand-Up Stardom, circa 1989, via LaughTrack mag

LaughTrack’s Road To Stand-Up Stardom, from our Premiere Issue: March 1989. LaughTrack was like the Rolling Stone for comedy, handed out at almost every comedy club in the country during stand-up’s golden age.

— Courtesy of LaughTrack’s Founding Editor/Editor-in-Chief, Rick Siegel

Siegel told The Comic’s Comic that when LaughTrack launched that spring 26 years ago, “My art director was David Kaestle, who is in the AD Hall of Fame for his Lampoon “Kill this Dog” cover and his overall work. Sean Kelly was my contributing editor. We had a 550,000 circulation to every comedy club in the country.”

As for the magazine’s pull-out board game for stand-up stardom: See how much easier it was back then? Actually, change a few names, add some spaces for things such as webseries and podcasts…maybe not that much different? The more things change in stand-up comedy, the more they stay the same. Or is 2015 shaping up to be the 1989 of this comedy boom?

Somebody please whip up a new version of this game for The Comic’s Comic and we’ll circulate it.

Unless you’ve already made it and sold it as an app.

In which case, never mind.


Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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