Last weekend, Davis alumnus, Michael Taiber assembled a comedy spectacular at his secluded house in North Davis. Though this was most definitely smart comedy, none of the performers held back.
Raucous laughter was exchanged and the backroom aesthetic blended nicely with the show’s unbridled humor. The venue’s personal nature created for a great proving ground for comedic material. Unlike the hierarchy of larger venues, the house show allowed virtual novices to brush shoulders with industry veterans.
Taiber informed the audience that there wasn’t much work to putting together a comedy show. It really took getting an audience and just calling up some friends. He wanted to cover the full variety of the area.
Sure, a few of the acts were Davis locals, but the hubs of San Francisco and Sacramento were also represented.
“[The creative process is] a lot of banging your head against the wall. Think of the saddest truth you’ve thought about yourself this week,” Taiber said.
Taiber emphasized the importance of being real. He noted that comedy that’s real to him turns out to be more relatable when he performs in front of an audience.
Keith Lowell Jensen is an industry veteran who has been performing comedy for over ten years. He became involved with the house show through a mutual venue he shares with many of the acts: a Sacramento comedy club known as Luna’s.
“My process actually uses Twitter and Facebook a lot,” Lowell Jensen said. He explained that the social platforms allow him to create a new joke and quickly receive a variety of feedback.
Lowell Jensen carries a careful dedication to his own personal voice.
“I actually don’t say much on stage that isn’t true,” he said.
Beyond the accuracy of the jokes, he mentioned frequently taking a running joke from his personal life, boiling it down and getting something unique. He noted that so many comedians are looking for the next joke that it’s important to retain your style.
Members of skit comedy troupe Comedy Space, Alec Roberts and Tyler Kinne, took a few hilarious moments to sit down and discuss.
Besides a healthy amount of banter and attempts to assert who the Jimi Hendrix of this comedy show was, the duo commented about what goes into their process. They mentioned that, especially with a skit group, many comedians get together and brainstorm new material.
“When you’re hanging out, you can talk about something that isn’t funny. Like an art movement, clearly not that funny, and just ask questions and see where the conversation progresses,” Roberts said.
They both agreed that once you’re a veteran you have a defined voice, but while you’re starting out your routine could change week to week.
“You have to be open to criticism while retaining who you are,” Kinne said. He mentioned that some of his jokes could be considered lazy comedy but with a certain audience they’re a hit. Alec reinforced his notion, sharing a personal tangent of his experience performing at bars.
“I was telling a lot of fart and poop jokes. The kind of thing that gets a reaction in a bar won’t work somewhere else,” Kinne said, as he ended the interview discussing his charmed beautiful life.
Despite its frustrations, the comedians all loved what they did. These individuals had humor, but they constantly worked to retain their edge. Overall it was an amusing evening full of laughs and new friends. Plus, free beer.
Don’t miss your chance to see another evening of “F$&@ing Funny Comedy Show” at 1604 Pole Line. Lowell Jensen’s new album Elf Orgy is available on iTunes. Roberts and Kinn perform at the Comedy Spot in Sacramento on the corner of 20th and J every third Friday of the month at 10:30 pm.
BEAUGART GERBER can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.