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Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So random question about etiquette. If you are sitting at an open mic night, and someone starts a bit and you decide that he completely missed the point of what was funny, is it bad form to create a joke based on the same premise. For example, someone starts making fun of the Westboro Baptist joke, and you realize he is making fun of them for the wrong reasons. It is essentially a different joke, but something about it seems morally ambiguous to me.

I always find myself coming up with really funny ideas at open mic nights because people are really bad, but they do touch on some funny subjects. They just don't take them anywhere.

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Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Sataere posted:

So random question about etiquette. If you are sitting at an open mic night, and someone starts a bit and you decide that he completely missed the point of what was funny, is it bad form to create a joke based on the same premise. For example, someone starts making fun of the Westboro Baptist joke, and you realize he is making fun of them for the wrong reasons. It is essentially a different joke, but something about it seems morally ambiguous to me.

I always find myself coming up with really funny ideas at open mic nights because people are really bad, but they do touch on some funny subjects. They just don't take them anywhere.

I will repost this since nobody responded. What is the take on this? Does anyone else find they come up with ideas at open mic nights? Or do they find this morally reprehensible for some reason I might be missing completely?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Ror posted:

I think you just have to figure out what your own joke specifically is and then honestly reflect on what / how much of it your took from another person and how much of your own process it went through. Do you think that it's uncannily reminiscent of the other bit?

There are certainly plenty of comedians out there who are adamant about not watching other stand-ups and try to not even pay attention to others when they go to the clubs. They always insist that it's impossible to steal someone's joke if you're not listening and laughing to it. And that is true. But at a certain point I think that all arts involve communication with the world at large. You can make music without listening to anybody else's but it's pretty strange to me.

But again, you have to analyze what you have taken. Did it just get you thinking about the WBC itself? Are you taking a general premise, like "Why is the WBC so angry?" Or have you taken a somewhat novel premise, a specific line of the comedian's that got you? If it's the latter, think about the funny part of your joke. Does it require the original premise? Can you make it more your own?

Jokes and bits tend to grow as you refine them and add tags and whatnot. If you just took a seed, no one will ever look at your fully fleshed out bit and tell you that it's not your own. But if you've taken a cutting of someone else's comedy and put it in your own garden, then you might want to try to scale down your inspiration to broader topics and jumping off points rather than more discrete ideas. And ultimately if you can develop enough of your own material then it will be able to stand on it's own and you don't even really need any of the foundation that resembles where the idea originally came from.

Let me lay out an example of this for you and let you guys judge. I haven't even written my bit out fully yet.

I think I am talking about broad topics. He was talking about the Westboro Baptist Church and about them protesting at the funerals of people who weren't homosexual and how that was somehow funny. And that is all he says on the subject.

Well, I watched him and thought that he missed the real joke there. What if they were really trying their hardest to get to these people in time to save their souls, but they just keep getting their too late. They just keep showing up at the funerals of these poor people over and over, before they even have a chance to receive their salvation. And then I go on an even bigger tangent.

I am not taking any lines from this person and the direction is far enough away that I don't think people would even make the connection. Hell, I am even starting up the joke differently, because I did my own research about them to give me ideas of how to lead into it. I'm very ADHD, so if I hear something, my brain plays the telephone game with itself, where after a few thoughts it ends up in a very different direction.

To put it simply, his joke was "If they are protesting gay people, why aren't they at gay people's funerals." Mine clearly is not. But the lingering doubts remain.

I just can't get past the idea that the catalyst came from watching someone else do comedy. I mean, we are both talking about how the Westboro Baptist Church protests funerals, but they are two very different jokes. (And mine is way funnier)

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I've actually written segways designed for callbacks to prior performances, just because audiences seem to find it really impressive. I've also had no problem telling people ideas they can work with for a bit. If they came up with a premise and I think I have a good punchline, I have no problem giving it to them, if they want to use it. I just like funny jokes, and in that situation, they really did all the work.

I'm just glad to have a guideline to follow. I think I come up with a lot of great stuff just by being at open mic nights. Sometimes, it isn't even remotely related to anything I heard. It's just hearing one thing that throws you into a different tangent, then a third tangent and then BOOM, comedy gold.

poo poo, I just wrote about five minutes of material based on the cold snap the country just had and I can't help feeling I will never write another bit that good. And it all came from some offhand comment I made about the weather.

As for this particular joke, it is in my notebook and it is from over a year ago. I rarely get out, I am just writing material until summer. I couldn't even tell you what the dude looks like or if I'll ever see him again, so I'm not going to sweat it.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So I just did my first set in about two years and I just can't sleep, even though it was six hours ago. I just feel really amped up.

My buddies dad decided to try setting up a show at a local bar. I'd been itching to do a set for the last year and decided to offer my services on a whim, despite only having done this a handful of times. I did this knowing there was no chance in hell he'd take me up on it, since this guy does shows all the time and the people he had up there all do this stuff on a regular basis. Imagine my surprise when he took me up on it.

The set wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible either. I got a lot of positive feedback, which was nice. One of the comics even told me to get in touch with him, because he does some shows, which probably means I wasn't as awful as I feel, but I can't get over all the many mistakes that nobody realized but myself. Even with all my problems, I'm just really glad I got out there. It feels loving good to go up and make people laugh, even if it isn't at every joke.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Any of you guys located in the Chicagoland area?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I have a question about approaching open mics. My buddy who is a seasoned veteran keeps telling me to avoid anything that might turn a female audience member against you. I'm just getting back into the game, but I wanted to touch on the entire Ray Rice situation. In no way am I doing a set condoning spousal abuse, so I don't necessarily think it would be a big deal. The two things I was looking to touch on was how Stephen A. Smith just can't stop saying stupid things. The other thought it how we as people love being sanctimonious, even though we are all awful.

Should I shy away from controversy when starting out, or just not worry about it? Part of me feels that I shouldn't shy away from saying something that might upset someone, but the other part thinks that I am starting out after a long hiatus and don't have my stage legs back, so maybe I should make things easier for myself.

The only reason this is even an issue is that this material has a short shelf life, so I feel I might as well use it while I can.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Even though this thread is mostly dead, I'll try another question. How long do you feel you have to use "topical" material? What is a good shelf-life?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So basically, it is a play it by ear thing? When you realize the general public is bored with the subject, just gotta move on?

And Chris Brown jokes are lame. At least insert Ray Rice in there to make it relevant.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Smerdyakov posted:

Good topical material can be used as lead in or else endlessly retrofitted and made into a proper bit. Bad topical material has a shelf life of a few weeks and is usually low-hanging fruit everyone else has already gotten to, or else it's too much work to put into a topic that's going to feel stale in a month. It's usually better not to not even go down that road while you're still trying to find your voice. This is especially true at the open mic level, because the comic not doing topical material usually stands out more than all the guys who don't really have anything to say.

It's fine if it falls in your lap or you want a cheap "pop" to get a crowd on board with your act, but if you're not working towards crafting pieces that can fit together to make a lasting 15+ minute set, it's even more of a waste of time than being an open-micer is already.

I'm not a one-liner sort of guy, and a lot of what I'm putting into this set can be used in various ways. I'm of the belief that if I have something to say, I should try saying it. Besides, I think it reads more like my own social commentary on current events. For context, I am talking about Ray Rice and the NFL stuff, but really it is more about how some people will justify anything. (I heard a guy talking about the Ray Rice video while I was out saying that we weren't seeing the whole thing, so we didn't have enough information.)

Now that I think about it, I think you are saying what I am already doing. Using the current event to lead into my own dumb rants on the horrible society we live in. You are right about focusing on building long term sets, and this does have some solid stuff I can hopefully use later on. Or it might be terrible, who knows. I'll tell you guys Friday if it is bad.

It makes me sad that this thread isn't more active. Are there just not a lot of guys out there doing open mics?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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XIII posted:

I just moved to Denver to do comedy more seriously and the scene here is amazing (especially coming from Arkansas). I've been stressed like mad about money and jobs and housing, so I haven't gone up any yet and that nagging voice that I'm not working hard enough is going crazy. Thankfully, things are starting to stabilize.

I'm right there with you. I'm in Chicago and I know people who have done things, but I got a wife and kids, so it is hard to balance. I've just said gently caress it and am going out somewhere tomorrow, because if I wait for the right time, I'll never do it.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Smerdyakov posted:

The best and worst thing about standup is that no one can really tell you what to do or what will work. What might be good advice for one comic in one scene might be terrible advice somewhere else. Some comics work on their material obsessively and write and refine it and just because they work hard that doesn't mean they're funny, while other people literally just go on stage wasted and say whatever they're feeling and it's hilarious. Some rooms will die laughing if you work clean but shut down if they hear any swearing or mean-funny, and other rooms require 3 solid minutes of dick jokes up front or they tune you out, etc. The only consistent advice is to record yourself as often as you can so that you can review your material later and be more objective about what's working and what's not.

While I agree with this, I still feel this should be more active. Then again, I understand why someone wouldn't want to put jokes in this thread. I think we are all secret meglomaniacs who think their brilliant bit about their cock is gonna get stolen, even though it wasn't that funny to begin with.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I just created a Facebook account yesterday. Haven't worked my way up to twitter yet, but I will soon. I'd definitely be down with that. I have friends who are supposedly interested in doing this with me, but they are ghosts when I actually ask about it, so it'd be nice to have people to bounce ideas off of.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So did an open mic and I am definitely out of shape. I already know my material isn't the best, but I don't care. I just want to get my legs under me. When the guy flashed that I had 30 seconds left, I thought he was signaling for me to wrap it up, so I ended mid setup and on the most depressing moment in my set. Always leave them wanting more, that's my motto. Can't wait to go back, but the commute downtown was brutal. It was an hour and a half both ways, so I'll need to plan my trips out better, so I'm hitting multiple showcases in a night. Luckily, there is a ton of stuff in the city.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Serious Cephalopod posted:

What city are you in? Also: other comics are allies- see if you can't get someone to drive you to mics. This will help both of your motivations.

I am in Chicago. It isn't a question of motivation, but the trip costs $15 each time. (Not including drinks) That is a lot with a mortgage, car payments and kids. It also seems like most of the people there live in the city. Driving would be more expensive. I'll suck it up once a week, but I'm gonna try finding stuff in the suburbs to make it easier. I think I have to make a point of being in the city a bit, as that is where the action is.

If I can get my friends to put together sets, it'll be a lot easier. I have three different friends somewhat interested, and I think if I do this for a month, they'll me more likely to follow my lead and come with.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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BulletRiddled posted:

Getting back in to stand-up after a 10 year hiatus, this is my second show after getting back in. Tried doing an entire routine based around one theme, which I've never done before. I'm not terribly happy with the middle bit, but I think the beginning and end are pretty good. I have a decent idea of what I need to work on, but feedback/criticism is always welcome.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQXIyqfeM5Y

Getting in a little late on this, but I enjoyed this. Just coming back from my open mic, I loved that your set wasn't just a bunch of dick jokes, which would probably set you apart for 95% of the amateurs I saw. The biggest tip I'd have for you is don't spend too much time on your setups. You want to be succinct. Don't take twelve words to say something that can be said in seven. This is a huge struggle for me, but it is such a huge element.

One moment where this really stood out to me was when you talked about being an activist and then giving up because it was pointless. It felt like you were taking a long time to tell us you don't care because it is hopeless, when just saying "because are things really gonna change?" gets to that point.

The biggest thing about an open mic is you have five minutes at most to get your point across. Not nearly enough time for the audience to get to really know you. If you are doing a half hour, you can spend time developing a story. In five minutes, you have very little time to build an audience and you can't count on the people before you to have truly warmed up a crowd.

In regards to your energy, you can have the laid back approach, but be careful of the energy you are putting in it. You can be dry and monotone, but that means you need to be more nuanced, because it is much harder to be successful that way.

I think the material was solid. I agree with you in that the middle bit was the weakest, and I think my first point is a big reason why. It isn't like the material was any weaker there, but you got to the point quicker at the beginning and end of your set.

I think you have interesting perspective and good ideas. Work on your presence and getting to the point and you could be really funny.

FAKE EDIT: How many civil war jokes have you heard in your life?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I've decided I am going to use this thread to document starting off at an open mic because why not.

I've done about six open mics in the last two weeks and was pretty bad at every one. I don't think the material is as much the problem as my delivery. I've noticed a tendency when I try bringing energy that it is too uncontrolled and frantic, which comes off terribly, so I've been compensating by bringing my energy levels back, just deadening the room. I suspect finding my voice on stage is going to be a struggle, but it is something I will have to fight through.

I mentioned doing some stuff on Ray Rice and the NFL, and I think Sunday was my last time doing it. While I like the material, everyone has heard enough about it and making that set works seems like too much effort for something where I won't be able to use 60% of the material again in a month, so I'm working a new set for this week. Sadly enough, it is another topical set, but I've made a point of writing a non-topical set for every topical set I write. That way, if something in the news doesn't strike my fancy, I'll have something else to move with.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Love Stole the Day posted:

Have you been recording your stuff? Since you said it's your delivery, have you tried writing your stuff down in a notebook and skipping maybe 3 lines (so like triple or quadruple spaced)? Because it's a really easy way for you to really cut down on your choice of words, which can help your delivery a lot.

I record myself to help me get memorized, but haven't gotten myself on film while performing to look at myself. My next chance to do that will be in a couple of weeks if I can get a friend to come to a suburb open mic. Nobody wants to do the 1.5 hour commute into the city during the week to watch bad comedy. (Not that I blame them at all)

I don't think I'm following what you are suggesting Just really big margins but the same set? Could you give an example, because I am just not getting it.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Love Stole the Day posted:

The Ralphie May video on the first page of the thread is where I learned it from. He explains it well -- just watch the video, it has a lot of great advice.

The idea of the notebook thing is to write out every word that you say, almost like a script, so that you can look at it again maybe a day or two later and just erase all the unnecessary words so that you are more concise and have less opportunity to trip up in your delivery. It also gives you a reason to use silence in your joke in order to fill in the time you're cutting out with words, whether by making pauses here and there... or just by slowing down because most people talk too fast.

Oh, I get what you are saying now. Yeah, I definitely go through a big purge of words. I especially try to cut out as much setup as possible, or to at least make the setup as much of a joke in itself is possible. The big thing I've noticed with good comedians is that their setups are almost as funny as their punchlines. It is just a constant build.

I'd done a ton of performing in the past, so I have a feel for what I'm doing wrong. I think it is just about shaking the rust off. I'll end up posting a video once I can kidnap a friend to record me.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So with my next set, I was thinking of just going up there with some ideas and spitballing, seeing what gets a reaction. Is that something you guys do? I mean, I'm writing it out, but I have some ideas that seem very fluid and could go in different directions if I get some audience interaction. Is this something that is a bad idea when starting out? I'm not fully comfortable on stage yet, but part of me just thinks "gently caress it."

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Serious Cephalopod posted:

It depends on your personal style. I've had pretty good success doing this, but I've failed hard, too. Just have a couple of your best back ups in your back pocket.

LOL, I've been doing this actively for two weeks. I have no backups. I'm gonna spend the next week writing like four sets, just so I have stuff to throw out there if necessary, but if I take that jump, it'll be without a parachute.

EDIT:

Keven. Just. Keven posted:

Hey quick question, if this thread is active: Does anyone know some good open mics in NYC? I've been to a few at some of the bigger name clubs and they felt pretty dire to me. I need to become a working comic asap. Thank you for your assistance.

I know nothing of New York, but you should just google New York Stand Up Open Mics and see what pops up. There will be someone out there keeping a page devoted to it. Then just try out some open mics and see what works for you.

Sataere fucked around with this message at 18:23 on Oct 7, 2014

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So I had my first successful set, added some parts to the set the next day and completely bombed. Man, is this a roller-coaster.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I recorded the set where I bombed.

Honestly, I keep forgetting because I am so focused on what I am going to do. Today I am hitting three open mics and plan on recording all of them.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Ended up only hitting two open mics last night and still forgot to record myself. Not that it would matter too much. Not a lot of success and I know why. Learning how to talk like I'm having a normal conversation in front of an audience is a lot harder than it seems. It is depressing to know that I probably have another six months of growing pains for stage presence at a minimum.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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thunderspanks posted:

And in another 2 years someone might throw you $20 to do 15 minutes in front of drunks who don't care about you or what you have to say. Welcome to the soul crushing world of comedy.

I've decided to start chronicling my experiences when I get home. I feel like I am fueled by a weird combination of anger and desperation. When jokes don't work, it seriously pisses me off. Mostly, because I know it is my fault.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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thunderspanks posted:

Yes and no. Obviously there's an element of control in the comic's hands to bring what they know will work in a certain room, and to that end being able to read a room like that is a skill you will likely only achieve with lots of stage time- but I have with my own two eyes watched signed, pro-tier comics slay one night and get crickets the next at a different venue with the same set. It's a fickle beast and sometimes you just have to accept that nothing you do will make the room hot.

The first one was definitely my fault. Plenty of people killed in there and there were some well established comics on the scene there. You could see how the guys with polish were able to control the room and get responses. I got no response except when I blanked on what I was doing and started riffing with the audience for a bit. One of my buddies was there and commented on how I didn't sound the same when I was on stage. Maybe I'm wrong, but I feel like stand up comedy is just like being able to tell a good story to friends. And I know I can tell a good story. Once I was up there, I just tried being someone else. I think the reason I got laughter when I went off on a tangent is because it was the only time I was me.

The second room was definitely cold as gently caress. It was of the end of the night for everyone, all people who were hitting multiple rooms and I actually got responses to what I was doing, which is more than a lot of people could say. But I know I was still bad.

And to top it off, I had a homeless guy fall asleep on me on the train ride back to the 'burbs!

XIII posted:

Well, I've finally gotten of my rear end and started hitting open mics. Did one set Wednesday (to 10 comics) and two Thursday (to 6 comics and 5 audience members). Feels good to be doing it again. Can't say they've gone particularly well because I'm just trying to get back on my feet (and no other comics give a hot poo poo about anything but their own sets and getting to the next mic of the night), but they haven't gone badly either. Last night's sets went better because the room is run by some friends who also just moved out here, so the atmosphere was a lot more laid back (plus having a few people actually listening goes a long way). The "audience" was made up of one table and the girlfriend of one of the open mic'ers (going up for his first time), but they were totally down to just let people try things and not feel awkward about being the sole people in the room.

Good for you!

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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XIII posted:

Thanks! Now if I could just get over this hatred for all my material and my seeming inability to write anything new.

Ha, I have the opposite problem. I think my material is fantastic, I have too many ideas and everything I try results in abject failure.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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My plans are to go out 2-3 times a week. Hopefully hitting multiple places in a night. The set I'm working on now it good. I know it is. The problem is I've had it for a week and I know the material itself is fine and my presentation sucks. I'll work it for another two weeks and then move onto my next set. I'm trying to treat this like a job, if that makes any sense. The crazy thing is

And I don't get why anyone would want to be the next Louis C.K. There is a certain implication that you would just try being an imitation. (Not that I think you are accusing me of that) My goal is to just be myself. I wouldn't be surprised if I have Louis C.K. influences, but I also probably have influences from George Carlin, Richard Pryor, Bill Cosby and a billion other comedians. The common denominator is just being honest onstage.

The funny thing is it feels like I've been doing my current set forever. I'm already bored of it, writing new stuff, but I've only been bringing it out less than a week.

So any advice on how to just practice riffing? I feel like my next time out, I'd like to spend time just trying to get audience reaction and talking. It seems like a good way of practicing being myself on stage.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Oh, in that case I am probably exactly like him. I jot down ideas all the time. It is a non-stop stream and I suspect most of it is stuff I will never actually touch. I do try to write out a couple sets a week though. Just to do it. Why is that a bad thing?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Pinky Artichoke posted:

This is why. The point isn't to write less, but to put more time into practicing with the same material so you learn how to improve your performance, work on tags, callbacks, etc. and generally figure out what works for you.

I'm not performing what I write. I'm just writing sets. I have my one set and I'll be hammering it until it is good. Then I plan on picking from something I've already written.

freud mayweather posted:

my advice is to not even think about riffing. just keep hammering out that same five over and over again, and once it's polished up and second nature you'll develop riffing skills during your recoveries when your nice, practiced, strong jokes don't work. (which might be like 20-40 percent of the time, depending on how many poo poo shows you're able to get yourself onto.)

Makes sense. I won't even worry about it unless I am failing onstage and just feel like talking.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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Sataere posted:

Makes sense. I won't even worry about it unless I am failing onstage and just feel like talking.

Quoting this because I ignored the advice in here and talked to the audience a bit in my set. It felt natural so I just did it, and it worked.

So Monday was definitely a success. I got through the entire set and I think I did a better job of sounding natural. The first half was definitely stronger than the second half, but that is because I know it better. I even remembered to record myself, which was nice. I could hear where I got uncomfortable with what I was saying. There is a definite change in tone as the piece progresses and not for the better.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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So how long before I stop saying stupid poo poo like "um" and "you know" repeatedly during my sets? I am not aware I am doing it and it is driving me nuts when I listen to recordings of myself.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


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I know exactly what the problem is with them. They always creep up at the end of my set, because I don't know what the gently caress I'm saying. I need to map out what I'm doing better. It's just annoying. I don't mind the occasional pause in the middle of a line. But near the end, I'm just saying "you know" ten times in a sentence and I can just feel the energy fading.

Just newbie frustrations. I had a couple different friends record my current set. I might post one of them and let you guys rip my set.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





So in working with keeping this thread active, I'll post the link of the first video recording I have of my current set. I just saw it for the first time and absolutely hated it. It is my worst set in two weeks. Hopefully, in a couple of days, I'll be able to post the video of my best set in the last couple of weeks. That one is flawed too, but at least I didn't gently caress up half my punchlines.

Side note you can't see on the recording, the MC introduced me as a Top Gun aficionado, hence the Goose comment.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHcl2JM00RU

Go ahead and be brutal. You guys can't possibly hate it more than I do.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





Pinky Artichoke posted:

I finally contacted my local club about their open mic, after a couple of weeks of freaking out over it. It turns out they book way out ahead and I won't go up until December anyway.

Good luck, dude! My advice is to just do it and not think about it. I spent too many years making excuses to not do it. And don't worry about the results. It takes a long time to get comfortable on stage. Look at the video I just posted. I look like a constipated turtle and I have years of public speaking experience!

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





XIII posted:

Haha, I've had a few people buy me a drink after a good set, but I've had more "that was rough, here's a beer" situations, sadly. Last night wasn't actually that bad, it was just one of those shows that couldn't have gone well. It was at a bar where we host an open mic and the owner asked if we would do comedy during the intermissions for a band at their monthly art show. The crowd was so loud that, of the 75 people in there, maybe the 5 immediately next to us could hear anything. Going into it we knew it wasn't going to go well, but they gave us all a $25 bar tab, so I would do it again.

That sounds awesome. Telling bad jokes for beer is a time-honored tradition in comedy. My first time out, I had someone buying me shots before I went on. It was fun.

EDIT: If anyone wants to comment on my video, feel free. I'd really love the feedback.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





freud mayweather posted:

i'd just keep working on the structure of the jokes and play with your timing and cadence. don't be afraid to sit on something for a minute so the crowd has a chance to catch up. you don't need to rush through the set.

This is an excellent point. I feel the biggest thing I'm struggling with is infusing energy into my performance while keeping a moderate pace. Any advice on that?

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





Just had my best set to date. Man, that is a good feeling.

Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





So do you guys spend any time actually practicing saying the jokes you are going to say, or do you just jot them down and go out and say them?

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Sataere
Jul 20, 2005


Step 1: Start fight
Step 2: Attack straw man
Step 3: REPEAT

Do not engage with me





thunderspanks posted:

I write all my poo poo out (ALL of it) because I have a strong writing background and had to do tons of public speaking when I was younger. Tying in to that, my method is to repeatedly practice bits over and over and over and over again, sometimes in front of a mirror, sometimes when I'm having a smoke break, pacing around my living room, waiting at the bus stop, etc- I use evernote religiously so I've always got my jokes on hand. The up side is that once I've gotten a piece down that I'm comfortable with I can minimize um's & ah's because I know exactly what I'm going to say. Also it's easier to pay attention to crowd reaction at any given point because I don't need to focus entirely on what line comes next, which translates to an easier time jotting down notes after I'm done. This also adds to confidence on stage. The downside is that I'm really not quick on my feet (I could never do improv) so if I don't have a joke to that level I can get thrown off easily and then it's just a loving trainwreck of trying to remember where I was going with it. Hecklers and screwing up a new piece are definitely my achilles heel in that regard. And while I've never had this criticism levelled at me personally (that I know of), I know that over rehearsing can absolutely suck the feeling of spontaneity out of a joke. I've heard lots of comics rip on others for telling jokes word for word the exact same every time. At the end of the day though it's just what works me.

edit: Ironically I wrote this reply while procrastinating practicing a new bit for tonight about a pimp beating me like it's a 3rd date with jian ghomeshi.

I've only been listening to bits, but not actually saying them until I am onstage. I've found that while I end up having a general idea where I am going, I'm still saying a lot of umms, ahhs and you knows. I'm trying to figure out what the difference is between that fine line of polished and rehearsed. I find it odd that comics would make fun of someone telling a joke the same way each time a bit silly, unless they are referring to audience interaction. A punchline is generally a punchline and the wording for making a joke work seems very specific.

I think I need to start practicing what I'm saying.

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