4th of July Popping...

Big shows are popping this holiday weekend, here's a few that should definitely be on your comedy radar.

at Henry's Swing Club
18 W Hubbard
Presenting Chicago's finest comedians.
This week's Lineup:
Prateek Srivastava
David Philips
Jay Washington
Doors at 7:30PM - Show at 8PM
18 W Hubbard
One block from Redline
Three Blocks from Brownline

at G-Mart Comics - 2641 N Kedzie Ave
Friday at 8PM

The Laugh Factory
Powerhouse lineup!
Felonious Munk
Dave Helem
Kellye Howard
Pat Tomasulo
Kristen Toomey
Jay Washington
Abi Sanchez
Dan Friesen
Rebecca O'Neal
Chris Bader
3175 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL
(773) 327-3175

Cole's Chicago Cabaret
At Cole's Bar, 2338 N Milwaukee Ave!
Rodescu Hopkins!
Joe Alden McMahon!
Brendan McGowan!
Peter-john Byrnes!
$2 PBRs, $3.50 well drinks + more!
Produced by Alex Kumin, Bill Bullock, Jason Earl Folks, and Peter-john Byrn

Blipsters on Broadway: The First Show!!!
at Stage 773
Sunday at 8:00PM

Don't be a Liability

If I could give any advice to a comedian (beyond the normal, work hard, write often, hit up open mics like a maniac) it would be this - "don't be a liability". Stand-up comedy is hard enough with out self sabotage, right? Seems like a common sense sentiment, but you might be surprised at how many comedians can be their own worst enemy - from headliners on down.

As stand-up comedy fan, producer of a Chicago showcase, and former manager of a comedy theater - I've seen some shit. From comedians that have puked on themselves WHILE standing at the bar - to a feature comic who wouldn't obey the light and get off the stage for the big name national headliner - to the point that the mic & lights had to be cut off so we could rush the fucker off the stage. I'm not against getting your party on, or even against having a larger then life personalty. But there is one rule, in my opinion, that should be sacred and that is: (said in my best Joe Pesci voice) "don't fuck up in the club".

Why Chicago Needs it's Own Late Night Shows

It's well know that Chicago has one of the best comedy scenes in the country (both improv and stand-up) and it's no exaggeration to say that some of the best comedic talent in America have gotten started here. Tina Fey, Hannibal Buress, Amy Poehler, T.J. Miller, Kyle Kinane, the list goes on and on.

What Chicago does not have is any industry (aside from home grown industry like The Othy Schwering Show and The Comedy Exposition). Comedians can get to a certain level in Chicago, but then have no choice but to move on and chase their dreams elsewhere. Most of the major network and cable channel TV shows are produced on either the West or East coasts. Including all the late night comedy/talk/sketch shows. When you think of Saturday Nigh Live you immediately think of New York City. But where is Chicago's SNL? Our Daily Shows? Our Tonight Shows? Nothing. Nada, zip. Which is a shame since the production of a major network, late night, comedian focused, TV show would drastically change the future of this city. Not just for a handful of select comics, but for thousands of professionals and businesses that would benefit from the jobs and tourism dollars that would flow into Chicago,

Derek Sheen Live Album Recording

Another exclusive live comedy album recording is happening tonight! Seattle-based comedian, Derek Sheen comes to Chicago to record his brand new album which will be filmed and recorded for release on Standup! Records inside the "Comedians You Should Know" showroom at Timothy O'Toole's Pub (622 N. Fairbanks Ct.).

This will be the only chance to see Derek record his brand new album which will be filmed and recorded for release on Standup! Here's all the info on the who what & why + links to $5 online tix! ($10 at the door)


Boy do we have a nice hot inside scoop for you tonight. Chicago's own Liza Treyger returns to town to record her live album for Comedy Central. Treyger moved to New York a while ago and has been doing BIG things ever since. Fresh off her half hour Comedy Central special she filmed three weeks ago Treyger is poised to record something special this evening. Her blunt yet clever comedy has been creating huge waves throughout the NYC comedy scene and treyger has the credits to prove it, she's appeared regularly as a round table guest on Chelsea Lately and was a featured comedian at several major festivals including Just for Laughs, The Bridgetown Comedy Festival, and South by Southwest.

And guess what? - We've got DISCOUNTED TICKET CODES!? What!? Yep.

No excuses people. Just follow the link, enter the code and that it!


Weekend Popping!

As per usual, there's a lot going on in the Chicago Comedy scene this weekend... ESPECIALLY The 4th Annual Chicago Women's Funny Festival which has scheduled some of the best performers in Chicago - male or female. Chicago comedian, writer and producer Kellye Howard is debuting her solo musical one act play, which looks to be a hot ticket of the festival and should definitely be on your radar. Here's Zwhat else is popping this weekend.

Mike Lebovitz Headlines The Comedy Bar
at The Comedy Bar - 500 N Lasalle above Gino's East in River North.
Club favorite Mike Lebovitz is headlining this weekend at The Comedy Bar.
Catch him before he leaves for New York City!
Friday and Saturday (June 18 - June 20)
8PM & 10PM
$20 Tickets - No Drink Minimum 

The Azhar Usman Interview...

A former attorney and dot-com businessman, Azhar Usman is a Chicago-based stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and producer. CNN called him "America's Funniest Muslim”. As the co-founder of the comedy showcase "Allah Made Me Funny––The Official Muslim Comedy Tour,” he has toured over 20 countries, on five continents. His comedy has been profiled & reviewed by over 100 major world media outlets including: The New York Times, The Economist, BBC, The Guardian, NPR, TIME Magazine, The Times of India, USA Today, Fox News, and Nightline on ABC.

In 2003, Azhar released his self-produced comedy album, Square the Circle, which gained a cult following among Muslim communities worldwide. It also got the attention of Dave Chappelle, whom Azhar frequently opens for. Azhar’s recent performances include: JFL audition at UP Comedy Club, SCOUT Chicago Festival, and NBCUniversal Second City Break Out Comedy Festival. He will be headlining The WIP Theatre August 13.

This was a fun and fascinating interview conducted by David Gavri, Tucker Millett, & Prateek Srivastava. In this interview, Azhar shares his stories of performing all over the world, opening for Dave Chappelle, and advice and wisdom to live by.

Big Jay Oakerson at Zanies...

Comedian Big Jay Oakerson
One of Comedy Central's featured comedians Big Jay Oakerson will headline at Zanies (1548 N. Wells) for THREE days only this week (Wed - Fri). Big Jay currently has a full length album on Comedy Central Records and tours nationally all over the country. This is a great opportunity to catch Oakerson's raw story-based style of stand-up comedy. Check out his bio below  then grab yourself some show tickets before they sell out.

"Oakerson is recognized from many of his television appearances, most recently on “Comedy Underground with Dave Attell”, " FX’s “Louie”, “Inside Amy Schumer” & “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.” He was also a featured storyteller on Comedy Central’s web series “This is Not Happening.” On the IFC show "Z-Rock," he received critical acclaim for his performance as "Neil," the sexually ambiguous owner of a NYC rock club. Past television credits include Comedy Central's "Premium Blend, " "Comedy Central Presents" and "Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn," along with multiple appearances on BET's "Comic View", HBO's "P. Diddy's Bad Boys of Comedy."