For those in search of laughter or curious about the goings-on of the comedy scene in St. Louis, we will be making monthly recommendations for shows in (and near) the city. From sure-thing hilarious to fingers-crossed, "Oh God! I hope this works" affairs, Funny Events is your connection to sketch, standup, improv and everything in between and out of the box.
This month offers you the chance to see the owner of a World Record in a basement bar, a drag show that encourages laughter and a couple of overweight, downright hilarious dudes.
A Standup Comedy Show with a Splash of Drag Every Thursday at Novak's 9 p.m./Free
The bar formerly known as Novak's, but still known as Novak's until September 1 when the new owners take over, is encouraging you to laugh at a drag show. Every Thursday Dieta Pepsi and Erik Anker will be hosting a slew of comics who are brave enough to take the stage. My guess is if someone winds up in tears it'll be on account of a fit of laughter. Both comics and drag queens are known for their over-the-top personalities and overall rowdiness, and we all know what happens when you fight fire with fire... someone gets burned.
Jared Logan is one of those delightfully strange individuals who may even cross over to the weird category. He's eccentric, yes, but not uncomfortably so. He smooths over his snide observations with a jovial enthusiasm that will charm your socks off. My guess is if you sat next to him in middle school, one glance at his boredom doodles would lead you to a "what the...?" moment. In fact you can even see a couple of his drawings on his website.
As for his street cred, Jared has made his way through the comedy ranks, his half-hour Comedy Central special will be shot this year, he's a regular on VH1's Best Week Ever and he's a warm-up comic for both The Daily Show and Colbert Report.
If he isn't onstage on any given Friday night it's likely Geoff Tate would be on a couch, watching TV, ingesting pizza and not feeling sorry for himself. This statement isn't based on personal experience (I've never met the guy) but because I've heard his standup. He's self-deprecating, but not in the "woe is me" sense. He's not a complainer. Geoff is a storyteller. He has the gift of approaching his adventures and insights with the apathy and delight of experience but without the condescending been-there-done-that attitude of a showoff. He's well rounded, and that's not a jab at his body frame.
If you are into laughing for a good cause then you'll want to check out John Mulaney, who is in town to benefit the St. Louis Area Foodbank. Mulaney is a pro of late night talk shows and comes with a laughter guarantee. While $30 may seem like a steep price to listen to a guy talk for an hour and a half, believe you me he'll keep you entertained and chuckling. Plus, it's all for a good cause.
Sammy Obeid August 24 at Brennan's 8 p.m./$10
Comics in this town are relentless. Many hit more than three open mics a week on top of their day jobs and booked showcase or feature gigs. It's a model for commitment, so it's fitting that Sammy Obeid will be stopping by St. Louis on his quest for 1,000 shows in a row. Even though he already holds the World Record for consecutive performances, he's still got his sight on 1,000, and he's got just over a month on his quest remaining.
With so many shows in a row, he's got to either be exhausted or exhilarated. Just as there is a high that comes from taking to the stage and grabbing the mic, there's also a serious low. He has documented his journey and seen both ends of the spectrum; his blog isn't just about the comedy, though. It's about some of the other things that happen in between shows that the layperson just calls life.
Opening for Obeid is Marquise Moore who is a local comic who is keen to crowd work and can put a goofy spin on just about anything at all.