Tip of the Hat 2/12: Reggie Watts

The Comedy Bureau “Tips Its Hat” this week to REGGIE WATTS:

“Horse walks into a bar and the bartender says, ‘It’s probably not a good idea that you’re in here.  You’re a very large animal and any sudden movements and you may injure somebody.  I don’t know why you’re here.  None of the glasses are ergonomically designed for you to drink from them, so you should probably leave.”

When it comes to making people laugh, there are jokes, there are stories, funny songs, props, magic tricks, and then there is pure abstraction.  Reggie Watts pretty much is able to do all of that (I do have yet to see him perform a traditional magic trick) and does so in a way that I really feel privileged to witness.  He is a NYC based comedian that tours the world, but he’s fortunately in LA for a few days and thus here at the Comedy Bureau.

Though Watts takes his songs, which are self-generated through a looping station and his own voice, efforts, asides, “jokes”, accents, affects, gibberish, noises, etc. in the spirit of an on-going prank, I never feel duped.  Many “abstract” comedians push the art form to point of completely eschewing comedy altogether and audiences can easily feel uncomfortable as they don’t understand what is supposed to be funny and can’t relate to whatever is being attempted on stage.  With that in mind, Reggie manages to make any time he’s on stage a delightful, whimsically absurd ride that he creates from absolute scratch, I feel, is very accessible to a wide range of people as, above all else, Reggie is quite the gifted musician. Being able to sing in different voices and different languages, make his own beats and noises, and rap, all on the spot, Reggie is able to delve into a realm of comedic incongruity and make it work beautifully.

I saw Reggie two days ago get a huge line off of saying, “It’s great to be here, really great to be here.  Now, I’m going to talk about tech futures.”  There wasn’t any real punchline or metaphor, as he actually talked about “tech futures” like it was a weekly business meeting and an entire room of over 100 people were rolling in laughter in their seats.  Then, he told the joke in bold above about a horse walking into a bar, which got an applause break, which was well deserved.

Though reading a description of Reggie’s act still might seem weird and possibly not funny, I urge you to go see him live if you’re able to because it’s almost otherworldly in the best, most enjoyable and inspiring way possible.  It really should be a testament to how brilliant a performer Reggie Watts is when you can write anything that he said, sang, or rapped, and be completely baffled as to what he was trying to to do, THEN seeing him perform it and make you genuinely laugh and be amazed.

You can see him tonight Feb. 12th at Meltdown Comics on the Heart of Darkness 7:30PM $8 and his album “Why S#!+ So Crazy?” is both something that I’ve been listening to on repeat for the last two weeks and something you should buy.  www.reggiewatts.com/@reggiewatts