CB: How long have you been gigging in comedy?
LOB: It’s been about a year and a bit now. I’ve been riding on the ‘I’m new to this, please don’t judge me… please’ wave. Guess that means I need to find some other excuse at how I’ve snuck in.
CB: How would you describe your comedy?
LOB: A lot of my material revolves around my life as an antihero. I’m not that great of a person but somehow people still like me. I think it’s the surprise of me looking all cute and boring but am kind of a horrible person.
CB: Which comedians influence your comedy?
LOB: I grew up watching a lot of TV: All That, I Love Lucy, South Park, those guys made me fall in love with comedy. I realised a lot of duos influence me, which is strange cause I haven’t really written with anyone before: Trey Parker & Matt Stone. Amy Poehler & Tina Fey. M&M, sorry Eminem. Maybe I need more friends.
CB: Did you always want to go into comedy?
LOB: One of the moments I knew, I remember getting a video camera at the age of 9, and used to make comedy videos all the time. The best one we did was a horror movie spoof. It was about killer dogs or something, but we had one of my friends lie on the floor while we put different foods on her neck to see if the dogs would eat it. Making it look like they were eating her. (Clever, I know.) However, the dogs started licking peanut butter off her neck and immediately threw up on her face. It was amazing and we got it all on film.
When it was finished and we showed it to our parents, they laughed. And not a ‘well done’ laugh, but a ‘oh sh*t this is actually funny’ laugh. I liked that they were surprised I thought, this is good, I like this feeling. Thinking back, it was probably my best work.
CB: How do you go about writing your material?
LOB: Luckily, most of my friends are funnier than me. So I just take material they’ve said and pretend I made it up. Okay… I don’t do that, I don’t have any friends.
What I do is I ask one of my oldest and closest friend (Liz) to read my material before I test it live. We Skype cause she’s in New York, and if you’ve ever been on Skype you’ll know that it’s an amazing invention, one that we should be blessed to have, but it’s also a piece of crap. In comedy timing is everything, and Skype destroys that. My theory is if it’s funny over Skype, it’s got to be funny in real life, right?
CB: Do you gig as a comedy performer full time or is it more of a part-time hobby? If so, do you find that your main job influences your material?
LOB: This is the most boring answer I’m about to give: Unfortunately, I don’t get the opportunity to do full-time, yet. So I have to juggle two lives, working in the day, performing at night, writing on days off, then seeing friends in evening. I’m tired, a lot. But I can sleep when I’m dead, or super rich, yeah let’s go with super rich.
CB: What do you find the most enjoyable and frustrating parts of the comedy circuit?
LOB: Easy. The people you meet. Not everyone, but a lot of people are incredibly funny. I’m constantly laughing, and I get paid for it. That’s incredible!
On the flip side, when I started, I really hated feeling lonely. Especially if you’re doing a gig where I didn’t know anyone else on the lineup. It’s scary, like first day of school after moving to a new city: you’re all nervous you’re not going to pass the funny test and not make any friends. But the more you gig the more you get to know people. Just be careful because some of the bigger comedians will take your lunch money.
CB: What’s your favourite type of audience to perform to?
LOB: I like audiences that surprise you. My favourite audience I’ve ever had was full of older people that I didn’t know. I was bricking it. I thought oh god, how can I tone this down for this crowd of pensioners? They won’t get it, they’ll be offended. I was proved wrong. They laughed loud, they were participating, it was amazing. Afterwards they kept coming up saying how proud they were, and how they remember those times they had in their 20s. It was like having loads of grandparents, it was awesome.
CB: Have you been heckled a lot since you’ve started gigging? Do you enjoy being heckled? What’s the best heckle you’ve had?
LOB: Luckily, I haven’t really been heckled yet. I had some guy mumble during my show in Edinburgh. I was feeling sassy so I just stopped and said ‘Yo dude. Look, no one’s making you stay here, you can go. In fact, I would rather you go because although you might not think I’m funny, but you’re just as bad.’ He got all embarrassed and stopped. We got married 5 years later.
CB: What advice would you give to new acts thinking of starting out in comedy?
LOB: Not everyone is going to like you, and that goes for industry too. And that’s okay, great even. Don’t try and be someone everyone likes. Don’t get mad and complain, that’s boring and not going to change anything. Try, fail and learn. Do the best work you can, most importantly work that you would want to watch.