There Is No “I” In Team

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It’s not about you.

The more online articles that I read about being a comedy emcee, the more that one phrase stands out as being the principle thought.  I get that, as this weekend we have two great guys co-headlining.  But in a way, Friday night is about me.

If I had been a regular comic and had a bit more success instead of the bullshit that has plagued me, I would look at this as just another gig.  But this is a big one.  This is home, Saskatoon, and everybody but my family sounds like they are coming.  My pastor, friends, girlfriend and her friends, family and relatives.

But to be exiled like I was from the local stand-up scene with my future looking rather bleak, things just happened to turn around.  All I had to do was keep at it.

In less than 23 hours I will take to the stage and try to do what I don’t have a lot of experience in doing, and that is in setting the tone for the evening and keeping things fun.  To some people this is just another gig, but then again they don’t know the story, which makes my return all that much more sweeter.

I have moved on from the last night I was on stage in Saskatoon.  It was bad, really bad.  Then again, I have come to realize that the audience I will be performing for this weekend will be different than the ones I have been in front of in the past in Saskatoon.  Tomorrow night starts my performing at the first real comedy club since I started.  That isn’t to say that the other crowds aren’t as good, but there is something about an actual club where you surround yourself with professionals (and not ego-driven windbags named Haris Khan who are arrogant and rude).  It’s a professional atmosphere where you are treated like a professional, even though you may not have attained that status yet.

I’ve been able to commit to memory pretty much all of my new material.  I thought I would need to do more time to rehearse and practice.  But at the end of the day, you can read all you want about how to be an emcee, but you have to remember to be yourself and not try to force it, just be natural, be real and be fun.

There are two headliners, so I have to be aware that I need to get laughs.  Not a shitload of laughs, but to do my job properly and at least warm the crowd up for the heavy hitters.

I’m not sure how I will feel in the moments just before going on, but I can tell you it’s something that nobody could begin to understand.  The first night is always the toughest and I have to prove my worth to be included in the rotation of performers.

I don’t know how I will do this weekend, but I can confidently tell you that I’ve earned this chance, albeit the hard way.  It’s taken just a little over three years and I have had to endure jealousy, bullying, threats and friends letting me down to get here.  I wouldn’t trade any of it if I had to do this all over again.  It’s hardened my resolve and allowed me to write more material than most comics I know, material that works.

Oh yeah, that’s the other thing.  Tomorrow night will be all new material (I’ll save the older material for Saturday night).  It’s material that will work.  I know you might not believe me, and that’s okay.  I’ve made my critics look dumb before and I am quite happy and intent on doing it again and again and again because it’s what I do best.

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