Chris Alan grew up in my parent's hometown of Rochester, NY and began to take his comedy career seriously in my hometown of Dayton, OH.
Currently based out of Charlottesville, VA., Chris has worked with my former roommate, and last week's guest Iain Oldman as well, so we had plenty of shared life experiences/locations to dig into.
Chris hopped on the mic with me during his recent week in Pittsburgh. I got to see him perform both on the first Collegiates & Comedians showcase of the 2017-18 Pitt school year, and as part of the 4th Annual Pittsburgh Comedy Festival.
I loved getting to pick his brain on everything from comedy sensitivity, working with and without a plan on stage, and how he's been able to balance comedy with a military career for nearly 10 years.
Just ahead of his departure for Austin, TX my roommate for the last 13 months and I hopped on mic for a great conversation about Sylvester Stallone's lesser known great films, Texas airports and travel tips, weirdos and punks, working in the media during the era of Trump, planning to remain a vegan in the south, his comedy start in Virginia, summers in Canada and his experience at Point Park.
This week Jeff Holt, General Manager and co-owner of Hambone's Pub (the Cheers of the Pittsburgh arts community) is on the mic, sitting down with me for his very first podcast interview ever. We talk much about Hambones, the bar on Butler street where we all love to work and play. We talk about how he transformed the space into a haven for many performing artists from many backgrounds here in Pittsburgh. Jeff and his staff have truly created a place that feels like home for comedians, actors, musicians and even one rogue fortune teller.
But deep down inside this bar owner is an artist. Jeff opens up about his own artistic background of being a passionate and educated painter and sculptor. He has art on the walls to prove it. This was a great talk with a great guy.
If you haven't been yet, I'd recommend swinging by 4207 Butler St. during your next visit to Lawrenceville for a beer, a bite, a laugh or a song.
Also check out Unplanned Comedy's open mic, The Five & Dime every Monday Night.
Live from The Wind Up Space in Baltimore, MD as part of the Baltimore Podcast Festival's second year.
I was so fortunate to have lived and worked in Charm City from 2009-2013 and to be part of that community. After getting accepted to the podcast's first festival in my adopted hometown, I knew exactly whom from my past I wanted to bring on for a panel discussion, Jess Bizik, Jason Williams, Tammira Lucas. We talk about personal branding, working with empathy as the driving force, and feeling like what you're doing is for a greater good.
After giving me some of my earliest stage time in Pittsburgh, I was overjoyed to get the opportunity to finally sit down with DJ Kingsbury during his recent visit back to his northern Ohio/western Pennsylvania roots. DJ has been in Chicago for the last few years but recently opted for a Los Angeles address change. DJ and I discuss toxic masculinity, battling back from an overdose, and the desire/challenge to share oneself with an audience and really connect.
After being a recent addition to Pittsburgh's longest running improv troupe The Amish Monkeys, I was lucky to get the chance to chat with my former improv teammate Kevin Conley.
We chat about some of our favorite moments from our 2015 SCIT house team, Are You Afraid of the Dark? Also, Kevin reminisces about his short-form improv days in college, and we cover some of Kevin's very interesting show night pre-show rituals.
Last but not least, we introduce the first recorded Top 10 segment in Nice2See history.
If you like what we do here, subscribe, comment and vote for us for best podcast at Pghcitypaper.com. Voting is still open.
Neil Blazin & Justin Vetter launched their mobile pizza business, Driftwood Oven, two years ago this month. To celebrate their Cotton anniversary the boys stopped by the Unplanned Comedy Warehouse for a fun chat about their successes, comedy ties, culinary background, ingredients, and other famous duos in history.
Episode also includes the debut of our brand new Top 10 segment, as well as the podcast debut of my sidekick sandwich Lunchmeat Grumblekraut, the not so beloved sandwich from my monthly showcase The Home Club.
Make sure you vote for us in Pittsburgh City Paper's Best Local Podcast category. Click HERE and vote.
California Claims Another One!
Just before Eric Webb Jr's big move to Los Angeles, I got him on the mic for a final but fun chat here in the studio. We discuss meeting at The Wide Open Stage, I hear who his starting 5 is for the Pittsburgh Comedy scene, and we talk a little bit about his stand-up style that always endears him to audiences.
This Friday night in The Funhouse at Mr. Smalls... It's Ya Boi, Ian Insect, with shows at 8 & 10p, both being recorded for a comedy special. I felt it fitting to bump this episode a week from it's original slotted time since it's a collection of comedians that Ian had deemed 'Swive Official'. We all gathered at the table to discuss some shared history of PGH Comedy--- how it's doing well, where it can improve, and what it means to be 'Swive Official.'
Seated at the table were Ryan Garasich, Harry Gilliland, Ian Insect, & Brandon Schell. Go watch them be funny this summer.
Next Saturday, July 29 - Zhoozh 3/Hambones/8p
To commemorate Row House Cinema's screening of my film debut in Craig Quits His Day Job, showing this Sunday and Monday night, I wanted to share a chat with costar and love interest, Jordan Streussnig, and sound man extraordinaire, Chris Bell. We recount some favorite memories of our time together, and discuss the differences in looking for work in front of and behind the camera.
If if you live in the Pittsburgh area, please stop down in Lawrenceville this Sunday (7/16/17 6p) or Monday (7/17/17 7:35p). You'll see a great local cast of talented performers bring writer/director Eric Paul Chapman's vision to life.
Saturday, July 15 @ 10p Stand Up Get Down - Comedy Gameshow
Happy 4th of July podcast fans!
Enjoy this classic from the Art of the Covenant days. I chat with my good friend & fellow stand up comedian Shannon Norman of Race to the Coffin Comedy, taken from the October 2015 archives of my old show. While you listen back, look forward and check out some upcoming shows I'll be doing here in Pittsburgh.
Friday 7/7, 10p - The Home Club @ Unplanned Comedy Warehouse
Sat 7/15, 8p - Stand Up Get Down @ Arcade
Sun 7/16, 6p -Craig Quits His Day Job @ Rowhouse
Mon7/17, 7:30p - Craig Quits Screening @Rowhouse
Sat 7/29, 8p - Zhoozh @ Hambones
Multi-Talented Comedian and Improv Singer/Songwriter Collin Chamberlin hops on mic for a chat about his recent tenure teaching Stand Up Comedy at Arcade, this weekend's showcase he's on in Bellevue, and how being known as the nice guy in a sea of bearded comedians can help him stand out. Stay tuned till the end when Collin writes us a brand new theme song for the podcast.
Such a joy to catch up with my former Side Quest teammates Regina Connolly & Alex O'Brien. They both recently joined the cast of Well Known Strangers, the veteran improv team and long-time hosts of the Pittsburgh Improv Jam. I loved the chance to chat with two guests who really have great comedy chemistry and are regular collaborators on all things funny.
We chat about Bonus Stage, where Side Quest will be performing this Sunday at 7p. Discussion dips into back pocket improv moves, coping with fear of playing with people they've looked up to, the Friday Night Improv days of Pittsburgh, and balancing the busy schedules of comedy, work and life.
Pittsburgh loses another great comic today as we wish Molly well on her drive to Los Angeles. Really had a fun time getting to talk about some of the early days of her Pittsburgh comedy career, the Tool concert she went to the previous night and bonding over sadness.
Have fun living that cowabunga lifestyle and enjoy the ride west today Molly! Polish Hill will be a little shorter tonight.
Ryan comes back on the podcast for his first one on one episode. We chat about his time in New York City, the upcoming shows at Arcade for Pride weekend, LGBQTIA+, Master of None and Dear White People's recent depictions of race and sexuality, the gentrification of Harlem, and his time at Columbia.
Ryan was, as he always, frank, open and honest and I for one always enjoy his take on things. Hope you enjoy the episode and have a chance to check out some of the great events this weekend downtown for Pride.
Go see The Handsome Prince Alex Stypula this Saturday night at 8:00 PM at SIT DOWN & LAUGH at THE UNPLANNED COMEDY WAREHOUSE. Listen to his new podcast GIVE ME MURDER OR GIVE ME DEATH, his debut album DOLPHINS ARE GARBAGE, and put your eyes on YEAH, YOU LIKE THIS, on YouTube or The Hard Dentist wherever Web Series are sold.
A year ago, Alex headlined the first independent showcase I hosted, The Cat's Pajamas, on the same night as Game One of the Eastern Conference Finals during the Pittsburgh Penguins Stanley Cup run. With the Pens back in the Finals looking to repeat as Champions, Alex and I get back together to discuss his busy year, quitting his day job, his upcoming tour, religion, and all sorts of Race to the Coffin stories.
Talk about being in the right place, at the right time, comedian Jason Clark was picked out of the audience to lend his score-keeping-hand to Aaron Kleiber's game show, Stand Up, Get Down, a monthly stand up comedy game show at Arcade Comedy Theater. Since then, Jason has used his friendly personality and genuine love of comedy to become a permanent fixture as the co-host of the very successful show.
Jason opens up about growing up in a biker family, and tells the beautiful story of beginning his own family. As a fellow stand up comedian, improviser and host , Jason and I covered a lot of comedy ground in this episode. We also talk about all the exciting updates on the Arcade Upgrade.
With the release of the first few episodes of the Healthcare Raw podcast this week, Dov Marcus begins the mission of bringing his real life passion for speaking directly to his nursing patients to the Internet.
Having met Dov in 2015 while hosting The Wide Open Stage, a weekly open mic at Cattivo, it has been great to see how he goes about promoting his message of positivity and care into his episodes like he did into his stand up sets. In our chat we discuss how he went from rabbinical school to nursing school, parenting and spirituality, and how bringing your perosnility into your work can allow paitients to open up and feel at ease.
If you want to hear more from Dov, check out Healthcare Raw and be sure to subscribe, rate and review his new show: