First and foremost, thanks for reading this blog. Hopefully you find it quite amusing, it may even interest you. You don't have to be a stand-up comedian to enjoy this blog. You don't even need to know a stand-up comedian. You just need to be amused by the tales of a guy who gets on stage to try and make people laugh, often fails, and then documents it.

Either way, I hope you enjoy the reading and I appreciate your time and support.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Steps In The Right Direction....


I can only imagine the hoards of disappointed readers logging onto my blog over the last four months only to find that I haven't posted anything. So I apologise....to both of you.

On reflection, it's been quite eventful comedy-wise but I didn't feel like anything had actually happened so didnt bother getting my blog on. I'll start by talking about the open mic night I went to in Winchester that I mentioned in my last post. It can really be summed up in five words, a "complete waste of my time". All the info online said the night was going ahead but didn't say what time it started, so I thought I'd play it safe and get there for about half seven. That way, if it started at seven I'd be fashionably late, if it started at eight I'd be fashionably early. It started at nine. Which isn't the end of the world but it meant I was sat in a pub in a city I wasn't familiar with on my own for an hour and a half. And to make matters worse, I didn't have any cash on me and I happened to be in the only establishment on planet Earth that didn't accept card payment so I spent my time reading a book and drinking tap water. There was nothing fashionable about that. When nine o'clock rolled up the MC came on stage and said "I hope none of you have travelled far to be here because only one of the comedians have turned up, so let's welcome to the stage the comedian". He did his five minutes and the night was over. I was tucked up in bed by half ten and not an inch closer to a gig. But I did learn one very valuable lesson - always take cash to The Railway Inn in Winchester!

A week or so later I took my girlfriend to an open mic in Southampton at a pub called The Shooting Star. It was a good start when I saw there were a good amount of people there, some of them had to be comedians. In fact there were about eight or nine acts on that night and it was a full spectrum in terms of standard. I'd say there must of been 30 or so people watching and 28 of them were a great crowd. There was one guy stood at the bar that spent the whole night giving a slurred running commentary on the proceedings. He was annoying but harmless. But there was also a girl sat at the front that took it on herself to critique every act as they performed. The MC must have told her to shut up ten times but she really didn't get the hint. She wasn't particularly offensive with her heckles but she was a persistant little bitch. I was sat in front her and had to restrain myself from punching her in the trachea. I remember one comedian made a joke about what he would say to his 18 year old self if he could, knowing what he now knows and she looked at him, cocked her head to one side, squinted a bit and said loudly "Bit pretentious. Who are you to tell 18 year olds what to do." HE WAS TALKING TO HIMSELF YOU FUCKING IDIOT. I'm not sure if you can tell but she ruined my night and I haven't been back since.

I also took a train ride to London to check out an open mic night there with a friend of mine who lives there now and told me about it. It's called Touching Cloth at Dirty Dick's pub opposite Liverpool Street Station. I was pretty apprehensive about what to expect, both in terms of standard of comedy and audience hostility but I was really pleasantly surprised. The comedians were very funny, some of them were funny to the point that I couldn't believe it was an open mic night. The crowd were really up for it and well behaved and there were good numbers too, maybe 40 or so in the audience. It was a really good night and inspired me to book a gig there, which I did.

Dirty Dick's pub in London
My gig was on Wednesday 28th March. The rules of gigging at Touching Cloth are that you have to be there by 7.30 to register because there is a huge volume of walk-ins that want a spot so you have to get there before they start giving your spot to the walk-ins. My train should of got me there at 6.45 but there were "signalling errors" on the track so I didn't get to the pub until 7.36 and my spot had already been given away. They weren't messing around when they said 7.30! I explained to the MC that I had been on a train for two and a half hours and was very sorry for being late but was there anything he could do. After a little thinking time he decided to squeeze me in, which I was very grateful for because I was beginning to think that I was destined to never gig again. The gig itself went OK I think. I got laughs where I wanted to, but they weren't huge belly laughs. I don't feel like I warmed myself to the audience very well which at least can be worked on but my gig might of gone better had I done. I'll just put it down to nerves and the stress of the journey. That way I don't have to put it down to the fact that I'm an arsehole that audiences can't relate to.

On the way back from the gig I managed to lose my train ticket on the tube and had to pay for another ticket home, so not only did I get to the venue late and almost blow my set due to nerves, the whole night cost me just under 80 quid ($120 to my Aussie and American chums). I don't know about you but that's a lot of dough for me.

I'm definitely going to book another spot there though because it's a great night and a fun place to gig.

My last piece of news is that, just before logging in to write this blog, I received an email from the organisers of the So You Think You're Funny competition asking me to call them so I can book my spot for the heats of the competition. I'm pretty happy with this if it works out because it means, without having to actually do anything, I have made it through the application stage which is a bit of a lottery in itself.

So hopefully my next blog will contain a bit more information on this. And it might even be within the next four months. But you'll have to come back to find out!

Thanks for reading,


Monday, January 16, 2012

Slow Going At Home........


Life is hard. I've been back about 6 weeks now and my life has gone from care free and stress free, to stressful and generally a bit wank. When I was travelling, a job in a factory was fine and living on two minute noodles and drinking wine from a bag seemed like I was King Of The World. Doing those things at home seems like I've become exactly what my teachers thought I would. Nothing.

I have, indeed, started a job as a factory worker, working for a company which manufactures lenses for glasses. It couldn't be more boring and uninspiring for writing comedy. I have my moments where I think I've come up with a joke that is pure genius. Then I realise that my thoughts can't be trusted when my mind is so numb that watching a fly buzz around the factory seems like a genuine form of entertainment. I write it down anyway and usually discard it when I get home.

I haven't had any gigs on my home turf yet. I am keen to start getting gigs under my belt but it's quite difficult when the nearest gigs are an expensive but short train ride away. I have made enquiries though and I'm heading to Winchester on Thursday night to check out an open mic night there. Hopefully I can get myself a gig next month if all goes well. I am a bit paranoid that I'll find English audiences all to be aggressive hecklers but I guess there's only one way to find out. I have also found another weekly open mic night in Southampton that I plan on checking out. I would of liked to have sorted some gigs by now but, unfortunately, finding work was the priority. No matter how hard I tried to put it off.

I have taken one, fairly exciting step to becoming a regular gigger in the UK. Over the last month or so I have kept my eyes peeled for entries to open for So You Think You're Funny?, which is an annual competition to find Britain's best new comedian. Past winners have included Peter Kay and Bill Bailey so it isn't to be sniffed at! Entries opened last week and I have posted off my application, so fingers crossed I get asked to perform somewhen soon. From what I can make out, I would have to perform eight minutes of material at a heat somewhere in the South. Then the judges select 70-ish of their favourites to perform in the finals which are held over the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. The winner receives two thousand pounds and a spot on the Best Of British Show at the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal. Nice prize.

Other than that, not a lot has been going on comedy wise. The more I think about it, the more I want to get the ball rolling so I think it's time to pull my finger out and get shit done. The next time you hear from me, I promise to have made positive strides and maybe even get myself a gig booked.

On a quick final note, I just want to say that every time I read a status update from my old comedy chum Dil Ruk back in Melbourne, I get more and more jealous and proud in equal measures. He seems to be going from strength to strength with his comedy and this is basically a note to, once again, claim to be friends with him so that when he's a professional comedian he can look after me and get me paid gigs and free booze! Do you hear this Dil?!

Thanks again for reading.

Lots of love


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

What Can I Say?.......

What can I say?

It's been a while, hasn't it?

I have spent the last 6 weeks or so on a bit of a journey that has had more to do with arguing with the Mrs about the best way to get to the airport than comedy. True to the name of this blog, I have been on a journey on my way back to the Mother Country that has taken me from the tiny island of Rarotonga smack bang in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, all the way to Rome, Venice, Austria, Munich, Switzerland and Paris. And, finally (pause for effect)......home.

I had a little mathematics session on one of my many train trips through Europe and discovered that I have spent 18 months and 14 days away from home. That part didn't take long to figure out. But that journey has taken 593 days, or more specifically 84 weeks and 5 days. Or more specifically 14, 232 hours. Or more specifically 853, 920 minutes. Or even more specifically 51, 235, 200 seconds. That part took a while to figure out. My journey has also taken me through ten countries during this time in which time I have held eight jobs. I have gone from having never done anything close to stand up comedy, to having done 14 gigs in two countries and being (very loosely) involved in an International Comedy Festival. This in turn has lead to me having performed to an accumulation of approximately 1000 audience members and I have been recognised on the street for my comedy on two separate occasions in two countries. Numbers make everything sound more impressive.

But in terms of comedy, I guess the journey has only just begun.

When I got back back to the UK a couple of days ago, one of the first things I noticed on the London tube was the amount of posters advertising stand up gigs, tours and DVDs. Either comedy has always been this big in Britain and I've been oblivious to it all or it has massively taken off over the last couple of years. I also took a brief trip to the small royal spa town of Tunbridge Wells to visit my girlfriend's brother and his lovely wife and new born baby girl. I'm not an expert but I don't think Tun-dub is known for it's vast array of stand-up but I spotted two separate advertisements for local stand-up nights. Even more gaspingly, jaw droppingly surprising was a leaflet I found in my house for a stand-up night at my local nightclub in my insignificant hometown. I think what I'm trying to say is that when I was away, I thought stand-up was going to be quite hard to carry on back home, but now that I'm here I think it's going to be even easier to continue. I'm not saying that I want to do stand-up in front of the pikeys at my local nightclub. But I am saying that gigs are out there.

I think I'm going to spend the next couple of weeks looking into my options while I get settled in and get in touch with the various contacts I made while in Oz to see if they have any gigs coming up. But all in all I think it's looking quite promising.

So I think returning home is a bit of a landmark in the Comedy Journey so I'll end the post with a little summary on what I think was my best gig so far. My best gig so far was (drum roll)...............my gig at The Comic's Lounge in Melbourne, the night before Australia Day. It's my favourite for a couple of reasons. One - it was one of the few gigs that I feel I've nailed and got good laugh time, and two- it was the only gig I've done that was in front of 300-ish people who all paid good money to watch comedy. Plus it's the only time I've shared the stage in one evening with a high standard of comedy A-listers ( In Ozzy terms, at least).

So here's to many more good gigs in front of the notoriously hard to please British public.

Can't wait.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rugby World Cup Comedian......

A huge hello to one and all,

Since my last post, I have mostly been working and sleeping. With a tiny amount of drinking thrown in for good measure. I have been working at Eden Park Stadium during the Rugby World Cup and it has been amazing. I'm a rugby fan anyway but even if I wasn't it has still been awesome to be a part of a great atmosphere with loads of street entertainers, including dancers, musicians and plenty of hammered drunk men in fancy dress. My favourite street vendor was a 10 year old boy who was stood outside his house near the stadium selling biscuits for a dollar each. Not home made biscuits, just your everyday store bought chocolate biscuits which cost about $3 a pack and this kid had made a fortune! And at times like those, when you're half filled with rage because you can't believe anybody is putting an end to this boy taking advantage of hungry passers-by you think to yourself "Why didn't I think of that?". Watch this space people cos that kid is going to become a very wealthy man one day.

I also had myself a wee gig last Monday (03.10.11) at The Classic in Auckland. I still haven't performed on the main stage yet because they have been filming a TV series there so I have had to settle for the comedy studio upstairs. I have definitely decided that Auckland is my favourite place to perform so far. The crowds here are awesome and they come in quite large numbers to watch an amateur night, and although they don't realise it at the time, they hand over their hard earned cash to see me! I couldn't get my family to pay to see me but New Zealanders seem happy to. Plus The Classic is the best comedy club I've been to, not the biggest by a long shot, but it's a cool place that has a good vibe.

As far as I'm aware it was a pretty good gig. I was happy with how it all went, but I'm yet to sit down and watch the video to confirm this. I have made the personal discovery that my favourite part of any gig is when you stand at the bar after the show and allow people to buy you drinks and comment on how funny you were. My ego is a hungry creature and needs constant feeding.

The only negative on the whole evening was that I got stuck talking to a couple of girls after the show, real intellectual, feminist and outspoken types who I wouldn't mingle with in normal life if mingling cured cancer. One of them was adament that New Zealand was the most racist country she'd ever been to (based on her afternoon in the museum and one night of comedy) and said her "Blood was boiling" over the amount of racist comments made during the night, half of which I'm positive were in my set. The other seemed a bit more chilled out but worked on a TV show in the UK which for some reason gave her the impression the sun shone out of her balloon knot. I think I stood for about 45 minutes nodding and agreeing while these two girls, nae, women simultaneously talked at me. And not one time did they offer to buy me a drink.

I finally taught myself the other day how to convert videos so they can be put on an iPhone or iPod. If you are a performer and find looking at notes particularly boring, I can't say enough good things about having a video at hand to watch at any time. I must have watched my set ten times on the journey into Auckland before my gig and it really helped with memorising everything, seeing exactly where you get laughs and what needs more work. And because I was confident with what I was saying, I feel that I portrayed that confidence and had a better show because of it. That's my tip of the week if you're interested.

One other thing I'd like to bring to your attention is the overwhelming success of the Melbourne Fringe Festival show a few of my dear Aussie friends put on, 4's Kin. I have to say that I'm hugely jealous that they're doing so well and the reviews have been fantastic. If you live in Melbourne and want to go and see a Fringe show, it's too late. They've packed up and finished after a sell out two weeks. But I have no doubt they will be putting on shows in the near future at other festivals so keep your eyes peeled.

Back to me.

I had a quiet word with the manager of The Classic and he promised he'd get me on again before I head off on yet more travels to The Cook Islands at the end of the month, so hopefully that will come to fruition. Failing that, I fear I have had my last gig in New Zealand. At the end of October I will be continuing on through South East Asia for a couple of months where I feel there won't be much of a comedy scene. At least not in English. Then it's back to the real world and Motherland of England to see how my comedy fares there.

So keep tuning in to find out if I manage to get a last gig in NZ, whether I get arrested for streaking at the RWC final or if I get murdered in Southern Thailand.

Thanks for reading,


Monday, September 19, 2011

The Ball Is Rolling Auckland...........

Hello and welcome along once again,

 I'll start by quickly explaining the last video post I made. I doubt you will of seen or heard of Dayne before unless you live in Australia, but Dayne won the Raw Comedy competition this year which is a pretty amazing acheivement. Thousands of people enter every year from all over Oz and the finalists perform on TV and are thrown into comedic stardom (within Australia). Now, not only do I think Dayne is effing funny, I also had the pleasure of gigging with him a couple of times in Melbourne before he won the competition so I thought I'd pay him the compliment of promoting him a bit, although fame has probably gone to his head and he acts like an arse hole now. Maybe someone could let me know?

On to more important things now.

The Classic Comedy and Bar 
I have returned to Auckland for a spot of work during the Rugby World Cup that is being held in New Zealand, and on Monday 12th September had the pleasure of performing at The Classic Comedy Bar in Auckland's CBD. It's a really cool venue which, the couple of times I have been there, has drawn pretty big audiences considering it's an open mic night. I think on Monday there were around 40-50 people in the audience.

I really wanted to take some pictures of me performing for the blog (and to satisfy my own vanity) but I also really wanted to record my performance for analytical purposes. But unless I took two cameras, which I think would of been a bit much, I could only choose one so I went with filming it. I had considered putting the video on here but I'm really not sure if the world is ready to see how average I am at comedy. But having looked at it, I'll have to wait a while before I have a better gig than that one.

It went really well I think. There were a couple of ropey seconds where I didn't quite hit punchlines as hard as I would like and a bit towards the end where I briefly forgot the next segue, but other than that I was pretty happy. I think it was really helped along by a large alcoholically lubricated audience and the fact that I myself was pretty alcoholically lubricated. All in all it was a very lubed up room. It was also only the second time I did my new set and I think with a bit more tweaking I might have a pretty strong 6-7 minute set. It seems people find it funny listening about how shit it is being ginger.

The MC for the night, Rhys Mathewson was awesome and a really funny guy and I would of been very happy to have paid the $5.00 fee to see him had I not been on. But I think the highlights for me were two young guys (they couldn't of been older than 16!) that apparently had just graduated the "Comedy Class of 2011". If they are only just starting out, they are going to be awesome a few years from now.

I already have my next gig pencilled in at The Classic for Monday 3rd October, which is ages away annoyingly. If I get the chance I'm going to head to Snatch Bar in Ponsonby to see if I can grab a spot there soon. The only problem is the travelling considering I have no vehicle at the moment.

But in the meantime, keep checking out the blog as I will post a couple of new videos, probably including one of my new beloved TV show Flight of The Conchords. And if I feel brave enough, maybe a video of me. But probably not. But maybe.