Morning Debriefing 12/2/10

1) OPEN LETTER TO PERFORMERS AT OPEN MICS: I know that we are all somewhat selfish, mostly insecure artists begging for validation that due to being in LA usually means laughter/compliments/kudos instead of money. However, at an open mic, the expectation is to WORK OUT material, which means it’s OK if that “brilliant” ten minutes you have just written about your ethnicity doesn’t work. That material “not working” is part of building an act and you have to combine honesty with yourself and faith in your material to “make it work”. So, at an open mic, DON’T ASK THE AUDIENCE/JUST COMICS WHETHER WHAT YOU JUST DID WAS FUNNY OR NOT. Open mics are NOT workshops where talking and asking are permitted. Open mics are intended, though it can be hard to gauge due to the setting, to simulate performing in front of an audience without the pressure. If you really want to know if it was funny, ask yourself, “Did they laugh?” and you’ll have your answer (that’s part of being honest with yourself). Asking for validation not only tests the already short patience of everyone else waiting to go up, but also brings about an atmosphere where everyone feels like they can offer suggestions during other people’s sets, which subsequently ruins the opportunity to try material without a chance for an honest response at all. If it’s quiet during your set at an open mic, do not worry about it as, again, the expectation isn’t to be funny, but to work out your act. In conclusion, at an open mic, stay quiet, listen, and laugh if someone says something funny, then go up and just do your act. That’s it. Do this as much as possible because the comedy community here in LA will recognize and respect “hard work” and you will become better (if you strive to make improvements).

2) Yes, Louis CK is in town, but I can’t afford that so I’m going to a show that very well might be just as good that’s completely free. That’s why I make the COMEDY CRAWL every night to give all you good folks some options. Start off with Christina Davis CD recording @ Room 5 7:30PM $10, then Comedy Speakeasy @ TSR Lounge 8PM FREE (call 323-568-1616 to be audience member), then Comedy and Cocktails @ Hollywood Improv 8PM $14/2 item min., then Comedy90210 @ Roxbury Cafe 8PM $5, then Literally Funny @ The Last Bookstore 8PM FREE, then Red Zebra @ Crocker Club 8PM FREE, Running Your Mouth-The Game Show @ Hudson Guild Theatre 8PM FREE (call 323-960-5519) then Louis CK: Word @ The Gibson Amphitheatre 8:15PM $57.60, then The Josh and Josh Show @ Bar Lubitsch 8:30PM FREE, then Paul Scheer’s 2nd Annual Sexy Christmas Spectacular @ Largo 9PM $20, then How to Live with Chelsea Peretti @ UCB Theatre 9:30PM $5.

3) OPEN MIC RUN: SANDWICH SPOT 3101 Ocean Park, Santa Monica, CA/Sign-up 6:30PM/Starts 7PM, HOLLYWOOD HOTEL 1160 N. Vermont, Los Angeles, CA/Starts 7PM, CAFÉ ON 2ND 7 S. 2nd St., Alhambra, CA/Sign-up 7PM/Starts 7:30PM/$3 cover/10 min. guaranteed, TKO SHOW @ 212 CAFE 212 Pier Ave., Venice, CA/Starts 9PM, MARTY’S/THE OPEN MIC 7351 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, CA (walk up Martel past Big Mama’s and Papa’s).

4) As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I’ve updated both the Greater LA Open Mic Map and The Greater LA Comedy Landscape with a “highlighted line” of everything that’s happening comedy wise tonight, which there’s plenty (i.e. the line is all over the place. Check all of this by clicking OPEN MIC RUN and COMEDY CRAWL at the appropriate links posted.

5) The Paul F. Tompkins DVD is finally HERE thanks to the great folks at AST Records! Well, not quite yet… “You Should Have Told Me” will officially drop on Dec. 14th, but will be available for pre-sale next week at AST Records. The Comedy Bureau will remind you plenty until then…

6) If you’re agoraphobic, too acclimatized to LA weather and can’t handle the cold, or just love watching TV, don’t miss Matt Braunger (mentioned several times here at The Comedy Bureau) tonight on Chelsea Lately 11PM on E! and Johnny Pemberton on MTV as the host of Megadrive at 11PM.

7) The Comedy Bureau “Tips Its Hat” today to NEIL HAMBURGER for his “tweeting storm” on the upcoming feature film Yogi Bear-“Yogi Bear Oscar campaign to include mailings of narcotics-laden "picnic baskets” to drug-addicted Oscar voters. #bestpicture/Yogi Bear" becomes first film to be banned in Poland since “Hitler’s Giant Cock And Great Ideas Also” was banned from theaters in 1967/Taco Bell to put Aykroyd and Timberlake’s feces into refried beans during December to help prepare fans for experience of watching film/George W. Bush in “Decision Points”: “Say what you will, but no Yogi Bear movie was released during my 8-year Presidency”. #true/(CNN): “Aykroyd Channeled Spirits Of Charles Manson, Benito Mussolini During Yogi Bear Voiceover Sessions And Subsequent Serial Rapes”/(CNN): Popov Vodka to sponsor asphyxiation of children heard complaining about Yogi Bear movie on school playgrounds.Touring the entire U.S., Neil Hamburger takes his uniquely original brand of comedy that involves clearing his throat all throughout his act and often times holding several drinks while performing to wherever people will appreciate/hate him as he is heckled quite often (he released a record where he is severely heckled), which warrants comparisons to Andy Kaufman’s Tony Clifton. Neil has his own self-titled show in Los Angeles that’s currently on hiatus, but you can enjoy his website here and amazing Twitter here.

8) From the "You Should Have Been There” Lagoon (in conjunction with yesterday’s post): Stand Up Comedy Boot Camp Trailer

9) I’m using Coinstar today to afford lunch. Please donate to the Comedy Bureau and read about the inspired material/comedic journey from this event on Twitter here.

10) Steve-O is headlining the Irvine Improv this weekend. I hate initialisms and think they limit expressivity in the English language, but, seriously WTF!?!?

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