Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Succotash Epi36: Goin' Joeless

Although episode 36 of Succotash finds us back in Studio P ("The Home of The Hit!"), it's without the benefit of our engineer/producer Joe Paulino this time. Under the unsteady hand of booth assistant Kenny Durgess, the good ship Succotash manages to make the journey through the rocky shoals of podcast clips and interviews (not to mention a new Boozin' With Bill segment) to arrive in one piece in your ears.

I'd planned to have Will Durst, our Ambassador to the Middle and the funniest political comic this side of Congress, live in the studio. He's just put out a new e-book, Elect To Laugh, a collection of his syndicated newspaper columns and I figured he'd snap up the chance to plug it. This being an election year with very little time left on the clock, it’s a political comic’s busiest season so we'll have to reschedule for right after Libertarian President Gary Johnson gets sworn in. (See what I did there? It's a joke about the fact I probably will never get Will into the studio...) You can click the links here or visit http://SuccotashShow.com and look for the cover of Will's book for a link to where you can buy and download a copy. Not to mention that with close out this edition of the show with our usual Burst O' Durst.

The host with past Succotash guest Joe Klocek
In the realm of other things comedy, apropos of nothing having to do with this podcast, I was at the 32nd annual Comedy Day in San Francisco Sunday before last. It's a big tradition in the history of Bay Area comedy, dubbed by the event's originator, the late Jose Simon, as the local comedy scene's version of a company picnic. I hung out backstage, said howdy to a bunch of comedian friends I probably won't see most of for another year, and enjoyed a rare warm and sunny summer day in Golden Gate Park.

As mentioned above, show announcer Bill Haywatt stumbles into Studio P this episode to ply me with alcohol in another edition of his Boozin' With Bill segment. This time we literally are draining the dregs of this bit when he prepares the drink he calls "The Starter Kit", basing what we swill down on what he finds left in the glasses and bottles strewn around Studio P following some kind of wild party that went on there the night before we taped the show. Normally you want to follow a recipe pretty closely but, in the case of The Starter Kit, you can pretty much throw in whatever you find lying around.

Here's what is in the clip set for Epi36:

Fitzdog Radio 
Greg Fitzsimmons has a great show not just because of the fact he’s genuinely entertaining and funny, but he manages to get some great guests, including producer/director Judd Apatow who, in this clip talks about supporting comedy (being a reformed standup himself), Tweeting too much and casting his own kids in movies.

The Geek Generation 
Rob Logan, Bryan Lipsitz and Mike Volpe are within spitting distance of their 100th Geek Generation episode - congrats, guys - and thought we'd enjoy hearing a slice of their visit with Hollywood producer and former WCW talent Jeff Katz. He tells about the mistakes that were made in regards to Deadpool's character, ultimately resulting in him leaving production of the Wolverine movie.

Tiny Odd Conversations
Not just a clip from Tiny Odd Conversations this episode, but I actually Skyped it up with TOC cohost Travis Clark to dig into the detail of his upcoming Hashtag Comedy Show in Los Angeles. What started out as mostly a joke to get people to donate to his and wife Brandi's podcast has lunged out of control into a full-fledged night of comedy with the focus being on having his non-standup spouse get on stage to tell jokes.

The show is on for November 11 at The Other Door in North Hollywood. And you can get free tickets just by donating to the cause! So click over to http://TOCpod.com and help joke the life our of Brandi Clark!

We also play a clip from TOC feauring their first-ever celebrity chef segment with none other than Chef Eddie Vedder.

Podd Socks
First time on for a show from Down Under I haven’t heard of before, featuring a quartet of Aussie 20-somethings —
Ben Dunlop, Kris Francis, Nathan Press and Jack de Zwartsitting around and shooting the shite about "current events, pop culture, telling personal stories from their lives and analysing conspiracy theories" as their website tells it.

Cashing In with TJ Miller
I've featured a clip before but I’ve loved the concept for this podcast ever since host Cash Levy told it to me so I'm playing some more. It’s supposed to be a regular talk show style podcast with various guests…but every episode the guest who was scheduled never shows up and comedian/actor TJ Miller is always called to fill in. This clip finds them in a riff about going back to where you grew up to do a comedy show and the kind of reception you get from the old hometown crowd. They also coin the term "hot pods".

Random Variety Show Podcast
Flattery may not get you many places but it will definitely get your comedy podcast clip on this show. Especially, as in the case of friend-od-Succotash Charley Miller, who has declared that listening to our podcast is what got him psyched up to do The Random Variety Show. Charley's 17.5 episodes into his show, which originates out of San Diego, and he features interviews with various locally-based performers as well as some unusual guest...like Groucho Marx.

Don’t Quit Your Daycast
Another fine fellow who’s leapt onto the podcasting soundstage recently is Ed Wallick, who’s also been venturing on the open mic stages around the Bay Area for the past couple of years. Like Charley Miller, he credits Succotash with showing him a way to do his own thing on the interwebs and it’s been fun watching him develop his format and style along the way. In this clip from DQYP, Ed teams up with Tiny Odd Conversation's Travis Clark to create Jesse vs. Jesse, a bit about battling Jesse Venturas. Venturai?

The Hustle 
Co-hosts Will Gilman and Adam Tucker run conversationally amok with a variety of guests — comedians, musicians and — I think — random dudes off the street sometimes. In this clip they have fellow comedians Harry J. Riley and Justin McNiff in the house and they’re riffing about men having a limit on the number of erections we get in our lifetimes.

In addition to clips this episode, I feature Angy Robot, a cut off of the album Laser Zombie Robot Love by sci-fi/comedy musician (and past Succotash guest) John Anealio. Feel free to not only enjoy the tunage, but click over to John's site (http://JohnAnealio.com) and grab the whole album for yourself for just $5 bucks.

Finally, as promised on the actual podcast, here's the artist's rendering of yours truly by Angus Doodall Tommy Royal of the Royal & Doodall podcast, luxuriating over a steaming bowl of succotash. Truly a thing of beauty to behold. I should get the original from him and auction it off.

That's our show. Presented for your pleasure. (Here's joping Engineer Joe makes it back in time for the next in-studio edition of the show!)

Please remember to pass the Succotash.

— Marc Hershon

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Succotash Epi35: Coffee Housin' with Sammy Wegent

Ringing in with Episode 35, Succotash is beginning to feel like a show (to me, anyway), even if our format keeps sliding around a bit. Maybe that's the nature of this beast. This epi is a real hybrid - half clips, half interview - and it's also the "lots of background noise" episode. I put it together while vacationing in Honolulu and my tracks as festooned with the lapping surf of the Pacific Ocean right outside the window. Coupled with the coffee house environment that special guest Sammy Wegent and I have going on in the background of our interview, I have no right to take anyone down for audio roughage in their clips - this episode, anyway.

Sammy is the brains behind Everybody's A Comedian, the web series that is currently "airing" its sixth and final episode on YouTube this week. He's a fascinating guy who I first met when we were brought together a few years ago to put together an improv training program at the San Francisco Comedy College. Actor, stand-up, improvisor, writer...Sammy is a multi-threat talent and he pulled everything together to create the first season of EAC.

The series is roughly based on his own life in San Francisco as a struggling stand-up comedian. Featuring Samy in the lead role, the episodes also show off a number of comedy faces familiar to San Francisco audiences - Kevin Avery, Bob Brindley, Joe Tobin, Allison Page, Yuri Baranovsky, Sal Calanni...and yours truly. (Check out Episode 2...)


In our interview, Sammy gets into the background that led him down the paths of acting and comedy, as well as how he found his way to San Francisco. Once he hit the City By The Bay, the seeds for EAC began planting themselves and he talk about how they coalesced into the semi-fictional series that concludes this week.

As far as this episode's clips go, here's the rundown:

Here's The Thing

Alec Baldwin kicked off his own podcast last year and, as you might imagine, he can probably pretty much have whomever he wants as a guest. I’m actually reviewing this episode, in which Alec talks to SNL and Portlandia’s Fred Armisen, on This Week In Comedy Podcasts over on Splitsider.com this week, so be sure to check that out. In our clip, Armisen talks about the transition point he went through from drummer to comedian.

Get Into Character
Blasting out of Grand Rapids and hosted by Tommy and Chubby, I don’t know too much more about these guys, but they’re 22 episodes in and taking this podcast thing seriously. And if Angus Doodle, from the Royal & Doodle podcast likes ‘em, that’s good enough for me! 

Soda Pop Talk 
Soda Pop Talk with Dan and Nolan just started popping up on my radar the past few months when I started seeing their tweets. They sent in the clip and this blurb about their show: We are just two normal guys with much to say about nothing...and anything. Sometimes we go over the line only to realize that there's still further to go. Soda Pop Talk is a show that is about variety - not just soda pop. Able to span current topics to drunken antics of family to UFOs to fecal matter to meaning of life philosophical debates...okay, not so much the latter, but you get the idea.

The Half Scoop 
Here's a "new to me" podcast, this time from Down Under, joining Australian podcasts The DHead Factor and The Rigid Fist as those being featuring on Succotash. Featuring co-hosts Bryce McKeon, Corben Mitchell, and Stephen Denham, each week they sit down and talk about anything and everything including time travel, films and Batman.

Way Too Hip 
LyonHart and Labrat go live every Monday from 7 to 9 PM, East Coast time, then you can catch WTH as a podcast the rest of the week. We haven't checked in with them for a while, so the clip they sent us is a glimpse in a recent screwed-up evening in the life of the hapless Labrat. 

Burst O' Durst
We sign off as per usual with comedian Will Durst reporting in, this episode in the aftermath of the Democratic National Convention. Don't forget to follow Will on Twitter @WillDurst!

Last item this week: I wanted to mention a fond and regretful adieu to The Gee & Jay Show as well as The Pissed Off Man Show, both out Belfast, Ireland, and both mostly out of the mind of Gavin Maxwell. He and Jay have been plugging along in the largely thankless podcast world for a couple of years and they've had enough.. Their shows were breaths of fresh Irish air in a world of soundalike "shootin' the shit" style shows but, for now, they've shut down operations. Gavin sounds off on his blog about the reasons why he's tossing in the towel, so click on the link and give it a read. (Good luck, boys! Come on back anytime!)

UPDATE: Happened to be up late tonight and saw Gavin's tweet that there was an additional Pissed Off Man show that suddenly posted on SoundCloud...it seems if he can find the will (aka money), he'll find a way to keep going. Check it out.

There's Epi35 in a nutshell for you. If you'd like to write me, that's at Marc@SuccotashShow.com and, if you're a comedy podcaster and want to submit a clip, we like 3 to 5 minute ones in MP3 format, which can be sent along to clips@SuccotashShow.com.

Until next time, please pass the Succotash! 

— Marc Hershon

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Succotash Epi34: Flippin' Clips

Ah. Back to an all-clip episode of Succotash, your Comedy Podcast Podcast. We have a cornucopia of clippage for this time around. Mostly new faces or, rather, voices, but some old faves, too. Purposely not clipping any of the "big" shows this time around. I’m talking the shows that get most of the attention from the media and, as a result, keep cropping up at the top of the heap on iTunes, Stitcher, etc.

There are a lot of comedy podcasts out there that get short shrift, little notice or just plain ignored. Succotash has been making an effort to beat the bushes for the harder to find podcasts and, if YOU’RE a comedy podcaster and want to get a clip on Succotash, just email us a 3 to 5 minute MP3 snippet from your show! Send it to clips@SuccotashShow.com.

I wanted to share a video with you from Frank Cronin, our Irish correspondent. He's finished his summer foray in America and is back on the Emerald Isle - Galway City, to be exact - where he's looking to finish up a college degree. His international travels the past few years have left him a little bereft of ready cash, however, and for the short haul, he's looking for a place near the university to camp until he gets his rent money together. Take a look...

All right - let's get to the rundown for the latest episode. Here's what's on tap...

I Am Idiot
We’ve featured I Am Idiot with Ben, Howard and Keith from Britain before. This clip - featuring a prank phone call from Howard where he's been challenged to mention the title to every Mel Gibson movie in the course of the conversation - is longer than we usually play. But this one was pretty entertaining so I made an exception.

Moment Of Clarity
Lee Camp is a comedian with an activist bent. He's very active in the Occupy movement. And his podcast, Moment Of Clarity, has 158 episodes or so, meaning he’s got this thing down. Interviews, guest, rants. It’s a pretty heady and often revolutionary blend he offers.

Sweet Feathery Jesus
SFJ is a cross-country, trans-Atlantic affair, with hosts Belasco, Dr. P and Booze in Texas, North Carolina and England, respectively. Some listeners seem to think that Belasco and I sound alike. Not sure about that, but the trio of them are interesting guys, sitting around on the internet, talking.

The teaser for Spoodcast on their homesite reads: “Two Americans, One Canadian, and one American living in Canada walk into a bar. There’s no punchline. That’s the Spoodcast.” One of the co-hosts (and executive producer) is Matthew Dean. Another dude is named Joel. No idea who the other fellows are - more info on the website, guys!

Dr. Matt
Matthew Dean (see above) also produces and stars in Dr. Matt. This unlicensed head shrinker bills himself as “half Dr. Phil, half Stephen colbert and half Dalai Lama." Ever since our favorite Dr. Feelgood Bob Ducca and his Affirmation Nation went silent back in February, podcasting has needed a self-help guru. Could Dr. Matt be the answer? Maybe so…

Combat Radio 
We played a clip from Combat Radio two episodes ago when Phil Leirness was our guest co-host. I asked Sargent-At-Arms Ethan Dettenmaier for another little taste of the show and he shot us over a short blast with Captain Cool Billy Dee Williams.

The Brit & The American
Thomas Moore and Alba Lewis over at The Brit and The American were so tickled that we played their clip that they recorded a special little thank you in the course of their podcast. I was tickled about that that I'm playing it in this episode.

From Out Of Nowhere (aka FOON)
We play a first clip from the From Out Of Nowhere podcast — or FOONcast — with hosts Rob Kern and Eric Furniss. It's a music and comedy-oriented show, with lots of guests, such as Marc Maron and Marshall Crenshaw. This clip features the guys’ visit with Blue Oyster Cult singer/guitarist Eric Bloom, and they ask him about the infamous SNL “more cowbell” sketch.

Comedian Steve "Mudflap" McGrew has been featured on Comedy Central and other TV venues. Now he’s fired up a podcast called Remasculate, featuring various guests including his wife. In this sample, Steve comments on a news article about the Top 10 Hated jobs in America.

Proudly Resents 
We’ve featured Adam Spiegelman before and with good reason: He gets some kickass guests. This time around he chats with Tony Clifton, the sometimes alter ego of late comedian Andy Kaufman and sometimes alter ego of Bob Zmuda. This clip has a great untold Jim Carrey tale.

We close out this edition in the usual fashion, with a visit by raging moderate political comedian Will Durst, this time giving us his take on the recently-wrapped Republican National Convention.

Until next time, please remember to pass the Succotash!

— Marc Hershon