The Los Angeles Podcast Festival Wasn’t Just Something You Can Listen to Later

Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

Over a week ago, the halls of the Sheraton Delfina Hotel had something that probably haven’t ever had running through them: hardcore comedy fans. It’s quite the upscale locale in the always lovely Santa Monica, which almost begs the question “It’s so nice outside, why do we need comedy?” Well, The First Annual Los Angeles Podcast Festival provided a more than adequate answer to that question. You may be able to listen to these episodes of all the podcasts recorded now, but you missed the magic of being there, and, trust us, there was magic (i.e. Dave Anthony of Walking the Room held a baby to the amazement of several other middle aged comedians on stage).

See our highlights below for one hell of a celebration of what might be very well a still underrated medium for comedy and more.

(Yes, that’s Cash Levy and TJ Miller above wearing masks just like they asked their members in the front row to do during their live recording of Cashing In with Cash Levy and TJ MIller.)

Paul F. Tompkins, Colin Hanks, and Mark McConville at SuperEgo Live
Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

The SuperEgo podcast along with special guests Paul F. Tompkins and Colin Hanks redid attack on the Death Star scene in Star Wars where they prayed for all faiths, whether they believed in the force or not, within in the Rebel Alliance.

TJ Miller was late to Cashing In, a podcast that he is the only guest on, where, while on the phone with Levy at the venue during recording, Miller tried to deny he was there at all.

-The views from the Ballroom at the Penthouse in the Sheraton Delfina were gorgeous to look at when a podcast wasn’t happening. 

Doug Benson, Dave Anthony w/baby, Marc Maron, and Zach Galifianakis at Doug Loves Movies Podsmash
Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

-During a taping of Doug Benson’s Doug Loves Movies at Barnum Hall in Santa Monica High School, Dave Anthony, one of the founder of the festival, was offered to play for a baby in the Leonard Maltin Game. Zach Galifianakis, Marc Maron, Todd Glass, Steve Agee, and hundreds of people in the HS auditorium stared on in amazement and hilarity.

-Subsequently, they did not get to play the Leonard Maltin Game for the second time in Doug Loves Movies history.

-The live Todd Glass Show at 11AM was not only so packed that extra fans were brought in, but Todd brought his drummer and taped gels over the lights to make the perfect setting.

-Also at the Todd Glass Show, Todd Glass had people chanting a parody of Hoobastank’s The Reason where the lyrics were replaced with an e-mail apologizing to Glass for a poor online review.

Eddie Pepitone, Sean Conry, Amber Kenny, Jamie Flam, and Horatio Sanz at Long Shot Podcast Live
Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

-Even though Eddie Pepitone has a documentary about him touring the country, The Bitter Buddha, and just got back from a rave reviewed month at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, he still suggested that any industry in the audience of the live Long Shot Podcast would be looking to cast the stoned kid, Jamie Flam.

-Another of the LA Podcast Festival founders, Graham Elwood, co-host of Comedy Film Nerds, crashed as many of the live recordings as possible, sometimes literally and hilariously heckling the show hosts and guests.

Dan Van Kirk, one of the best Mark Walhberg impersonators in the world, lent his talents all weekend to shows like Sklarbro Country and Comedy Film Nerds.

Jerrod Carmichael as guest on Greg Fitzsimmons’ Fitzdog Radio
Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

-The hilarious and up and coming Jerrod Carmichael was a guest on both Sklarbro Country and Fitzdog Radio and dazzled both shows with how funny he is for young he is and how long he’s been doing comedy, then slated to be on network TV very soon.

-The fans in attendance were unlike many we’ve seen at festival. Ardent listeners to podcasts will stick through a lot, almost anything, whether there’s been a stretch of organic conversation that’s not necessarily laugh out loud or not as opposed to people walking out of a show because they haven’t laughed in 3 minutes. 

Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

-Attendees were so hardcore at this first festival that many of them came from out of state, certainly from outside of LA county. Seth, pictured above, came all the way from Wyoming to come to the festival and got an extra job just to make sure that he could do so. When asked, he said that it was all worth it.

-At a live Walking the Room, Dave Anthony and Greg Behrendt brought guest, Aussie comedian Wil Anderson to their level when Anderson commented that he was sad. 

-Dan Harmon’s Harmontown featured a Harmon Fun time segment featuring Dan Harmon kicking, pratfall-ing, and talking to people like he was in a beer commercial.

Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

-The fairly new podcast to Nerdist Industries, The JV Club with Janet Varney made for one of the most beautiful shows of the festival with Priscilla Ahn singing three songs and guest Lizzy Caplan playing MASH.

-Our favorite quote of the festival came from The Dork Forest with Jackie Kashian. Guest Murray Valeriano said on Henry Rollins, “Henry Rollins is hipsters’ Ryan Seacrest.”

Jackie Kashian killed during her set on the Podsmash event, even dropping a Ginsberg reference.

Thomas Lennon was the guest on Who Charted? where hosts Howard Kremer and Kulap Vilaysack counted down Lennon’s top grossing films that he’s penned. He felt like he was being called out for a witch.

-Right before being brought on stage at the Never Not Funny live episode, guest Pat Francis stole water dispensers and brought them with him to make the stage perfect though Jimmy Pardo inevitably and hilariously found something else to pick at.

Photo by Joel Mandelkorn/@cleftclips

Graham Elwood closed out the Doug Love Movies Podsmash event at Barnum High School as a retired Santa Monica detective that spat pro-America spoken word poems.