Duncan Trussell: Family Hour

By David Gavri

Duncan Trussell is a writer, actor, and stand up comedian who can be seen regularly at the Hollywood Improv and The Comedy Store in Los Angeles. He has written and appeared in sketches for Fuel TV’s Stupidface, Showtime’s La La Land, Comedy Central’s Nick Swardson’s Pretend Time, and HBO’s Funny or Die Presents. Recent TV credits include MADtV, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Roots 3. Duncan hosts his own podcast, The Duncan Trussell Family Hour, and he frequently appears on Joe Rogan’s podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. Currently in the middle of a tour, Duncan’s next stop is right here in Houston, tonight at Fitzgerald’s.We were lucky to meet him and talk with him about his tour, his podcast, and psychedelic meditation.

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Andy Huggins: The Wise Old Man

By David Gavri

The oldest member of the Texas Outlaw Comics, Andy Huggins is a veteran comic who came up during a time when Houston’s greatest included: Riley Barber, Steve Epstein, John Farneti, Jimmy Pineapple, Ron Shock, and Bill Hicks. A Houston favorite, Huggins was a graduate of both The Comedy Store in Los Angeles and Houston’s legendary, The Comedy Workshop. Throughout his career, he’s opened for Ray Charles, he’s written for Billy Crystal and The Academy Awards, and he’s developed superstars like Bill Hicks and Jay Leno. He has seen it all, he’s done it all, and he’s here to share with us his wisdom. Continue reading

Maz Jobrani: Brown and Friendly

By David Gavri

Maz Jobrani is a Persian American stand up comedian who was raised in the San Fransisco Bay Area, where he earned a degree at UC Berkeley. He was later accepted into UCLA’s Ph.D. program. While there, Maz visited the university’s prestigious theater program and was immediately hooked on acting—something he was involved with as a kid. He left the Ph.D. program and decided to pursue his childhood passion of acting and performing.

Maz’s first big break came as a founding member of the Axis of Evil Comedy Central Special, which premiered in 2007. It was the first show on American television with an all Middle Eastern American cast. The tour performed in the United States, and later went over to the Middle East, selling out shows in Dubai, Beirut, Cairo, Kuwait, and Amman, Jordan—where they performed in front of the king and queen.

Maz followed up his Axis of Evil tour with a Showtime special, Maz Jobrani: Brown & Friendly, for which he toured all over the world. He is currently working on his next special, Browner & Friendlier.

Since then, Maz has made TV appearances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Lopez Tonight, Comedy Central’s Premium Blend, and The Colbert Report. Maz has also played roles in Ice Cube’s Friday After Next and Sydney Pollack’s The Interpreter.

And after selling out the entire weekend at The Improv, Maz took the time out of his busy schedule to hang with us and share his story. Continue reading

Rob Mungle: The Reverend

By David Gavri

Both feared and revered, Rob Mungle, A.K.A. The Reverend, has been a staple of the stand-up comedy world here in Houston since the early 1990s. His brazen style and his foul language have caught the attention of comedy fans everywhere. And his near-bloody conflicts with the IRS, anime fans, along with strip-club managers have turned his punchlines into legendary stories.

Mungle is also a voice actor, as well as the founder of the highly successful comedy group known as The Whiskey Brothers. Needless to say, Robert Mungle is highly entertaining. We had the opportunity to hang with Mungle after his set to talk about the Houston comedy scene—what it used to be, and what it still can be. Continue reading

Ali Siddiq: Houston Legend

By David Gavri

Without a doubt, Ali Siddiq is a Houston comedy legend. To date, Ali has toured and has worked with comedy’s most notable talent to date. The list includes: D.L. Hughley, Katt Williams, J. Anthony Brown, Bruce Bruce, Bill Belamy, and Mike Epps, among others. His TV credits go something like this:
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Paul Oddo: Oddo Man Out

By David Gavri & Al Bahmani

When I first started doing stand-up, there was a Houston Press article about Paul Oddo. I studied it like it was a strategy guide for a Nintendo game.  —Chase Durousseau

Nominated as “Best Local Comedian” by The Houston Press in 2006, Paul Oddo’s style is different from the classic set up, punchline formula. With Oddo, there is always a story. It takes time and attention to appreciate his style, but have faith in him, he’s worth it. Plain spoken and unpretentious, Oddo weaves a narrative tapestry thas full of twists, turns, and unexpected surprises. Currently residing in New York City, Oddo takes some time off from self-promotion to catch up and tell us what he’s been up to. Continue reading

Sheng Wang: Yes, That’s His Name

By David Gavri

Sheng Wang is a Taiwanese Texan who developed and honed his comedy in the thriving stand up community of the San Francisco Bay Area. A working comic in New York City, he has toured with the Comedians of Comedy and American Eagle’s Campus Comedy Challenge. He also appeared on Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham and was invited to attend the Just for Laughs comedy festival in Montreal, Canada. Sheng recently filmed his half hour Comedy Central special back in 2011. After that, NBC awarded him with a holding deal that same year. Sheng also appeared on the John Oliver NY Stand Up Show. After headlining at the Improv here in Houston, Sheng gave us his time, as well as his knowledge. Continue reading

Mark Hurtado: L.A. Bound

By David Gavri

Mark Hurtado is a Houston-born comic who has performed at all of the major Houston comedy clubs, including: The Houston Improv, The Comedy Showcase, and The Laff Stop (now closed). He has also performed at The Velveeta Room as well as Cap City in Austin, along with Hyena’s in Dallas, and Boom Town Casino in Louisiana. Continue reading

Ralphie May: Real Talk

By David Gavri

In 2003 Ralphie May was chosen to compete in the first season of Last Comic Standing. His second place finish earned him respect all over the nation. His career took off from there. Ralphie then appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. There, he became the first comedian in ten years to receive a standing ovation from the audience. His first comedy special Just Correct went platinum in 2004, and the CD version made the top ten list on the Billboard comedy charts. But Ralphie was just getting warmed up. He later followed up with four Comedy Central specials: Girth of a Nation (2006), Prime Cut (2007), Austin-tatious (2008), and Too Big To Ignore (2012).

Ralphie May now lives in Los Angeles with his beautiful wife, a fellow comedienne, Lahna Turner, their daughter April June May, their son August May, and their two dogs, Pimp and Hoochie Mama. Coming back to Houston this past weekend, Ralphie performed seven sold-out shows here at The Improv comedy club. And after taking pictures and signing autographs with every single one of his fans, Ralphie was nice enough to hang with us to talk comedy.

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New Comedy Open Mic at Nico’s

By Steven Padilla

There is a new comedy open mic outside of Loop 610!  You asked for and you got it.  Nico’s is located at 22610 Loop 494 in Kingwood, 77339.  This open mic takes place every Sunday and starts at 8.  There is plenty of seating and plenty of parking.  For anyone interested in performing, signup starts at 7:30 and it is first come, first serve.  Stage time will vary between 5-10 minutes, depending on how many people are performing.  If you have any questions, contact DJ Northway on Facebook.  Support local comedy!