Favorite Comedians List

Wednesday February 8th, 2012 – Fox Lake, IL

I have never figured out the need in a certain group of people who want to hear in detail who I happen to think is funny, or worse yet feel they have to tell me their detailed list of who they like. Does it matter? Not to me, but I guess it makes those people feel smarter.

These are the same people who must sit around for hours heatedly debating who are the best pitchers or quarterbacks of all time, or which Kardashian sister has the bubbliest butt. People like to make lists and compare things, or at least a healthy percentage of them do.

I’ve had this happen since I started in comedy, and I still get it now. Someone will come up to me after a show and start rattling off people who they think are funny and I’m never sure what I’m supposed to say to them. Are they wrong? No, but they’re not right either.

Nobody is right or wrong with a list like that. It’s a matter of personal taste, and that’s a right everyone has that nobody else can ever take away. I might not happen to agree, but it isn’t about how I feel. I’m just a guy, and I think what I think. I mostly keep it to myself.

That being said, here’s a list of my favorite standup comedians of all time. I say standup comedians, because I often hear names like John Belushi or Bill Murray or another comic actor who had a role in a movie they liked. I usually just nod and smile, and then look for an opportunity to fake a seizure so I can make my exit. I try to be polite, but it’s difficult.

I freely admit before I start that my opinion doesn’t mean a damn thing, but here goes:

– Rodney Dangerfield: In my mind, he’s the king. Everything about him makes me laugh.

After that, it doesn’t accomplish anything to debate the big names. Rodney has been my favorite comedian since I was in high school. I love his standup comedy, and I love to see his movies even now. His role in Caddyshack was a classic, and I still laugh out loud and quote Rodney’s lines whenever I see it. As an all around performer, he still gets my vote.

If you don’t agree, that’s fine. You don’t have to. There are huge names in comedy that don’t make me laugh in the least. I could name them now, but then I’d get emails from all kinds of keyboard crusaders who’d take it as a challenge and try to start an opinion war.

I don’t want or need that in my life, now or ever. Instead, how about if I throw out a list of working comic friends of mine who I think are really funny, and hopefully they’ll get a few more well deserved fans that maybe wouldn’t have heard of them otherwise? That’s a much better idea. Just because someone isn’t famous doesn’t mean they don’t have talent.

Fame is a whole game unto itself. There are a lot of famous people who are famous just for being famous. Talent had nothing to do with it, or at least not after a while. It might be the reason they got there, but then whatever they did fades away and their name is just out there. Is Britney Spears talented? That’s debatable. But here are some comedians who are:

– Dwight York: I’m working with him this week, and that’s why he’s first on the list. He’s warped, sick and twisted – and that’s a sincere compliment. He writes excellent jokes, and a lot of them. He works at his craft, and makes me laugh out loud every time I watch him.

– Don Reese: Another road warrior who I love dearly on stage and off. Don loves monster movies and looks like he could star in one. He has a hilarious video called ‘It Came From Iowa’, which he does. He looks intimidating, but is one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met.

– Dan Still: An unsung comic out of my home town of Milwaukee. Together with Dwight and Don, I want to put a tour together with these three guys and call it ‘The Pirates Of Comedy’. They look like the Satanic Beatles, but they’re all great guys and super funny.

– Jim McHugh: I’ve always thought he was a very solid comic and still do. He chooses to put his act together in chunks rather than individual jokes, and it totally works for him on many levels. He’s always been a favorite, and I like hanging out with him off stage too.

– Tim Walkoe: A regular at Zanies in Chicago along with Larry Reeb – ‘Uncle Lar’. Often I am placed in the same sentence with these two because we’re the three that tend to be on Zanies list of favorite acts to book. I am beyond flattered to be listed with either of them.

– Larry Reeb: Again, a wonderful comic with a sick and twisted view of things. He always makes me laugh out loud even though I’ve seen his act literally hundreds of times. He has a style and rhythm all his own, as does Tim Walkoe. They’re masters of the comedy craft.

– James Wesley Jackson: He used to open for George Clinton and Parliament/Funkadelic during their heyday, and I was a fan of his before I ever met him for that alone. I recorded a DVD project with James, and need to get it out there soon. Plus, he’s a wonderful soul.

– Dwayne Kennedy: Probably the most unsung raw talent of anyone I’ve ever seen. He’s a brilliant comic and he’s even done a couple of Letterman appearances. But, with no insult intended at all – nobody knows who he is. That’s a shame, but that’s life. He’s fantastic.

– Tim Northern: He’s always been one of my favorites, and still is. He has a natural gift of both writing and performing, and I think it’s pure magic. His material is unmistakably his, and that’s rare in any field of entertainment. I consider him to be a true artist. He’s gifted.

– Hannibal Burress: He’s in the same classification as a Tim Northern, but completely his own identity. He moved to New York last time I saw him and was writing for SNL. That kid has got talent coming out of his pores, and a work ethic too. He’s got a bright future.

There are so many others I could list, but I don’t have time or space. That’s why I don’t like lists. Someone always gets left out. I could list 100 more, and 100 more after that. I’d appreciate it if someone placed me on a list like this, so I’ll try to rustle up a few new fans for funny friends of mine that I really enjoy. Being a good person doesn’t matter as far as the business goes, but it does to me. These are quality people with talent. Check them out.


2 Responses to “Favorite Comedians List”

  1. Chrys Lavelette Says:

    My List:
    -C.Cardell Willis
    -Dobie Maxwell

  2. dobiemaxwell Says:

    – blush – 😉

    Thank you very much.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: