I talked to comedian Jay Black about comedy, his career, and what it’s like touring the country.
Q: When did you decide to become a comedian?
I was seven years old when I saw Bill Cosby with my father. It was the stand up special that went on to become “The Cosby Show.” I’ve NEVER seen my dad emote that much. After it was over, I looked at him and said “Whatever that was, I want to do that.” NOT the flim flam stuff Bill Cosby has done allegedly of course..
Q: Where do you draw your comedy from?
People ask me “Jay, were you the class clown?” No, most comedians aren’t the class clowns. The comedians are the one next to them saying “You think THIS shit is funny?” We’re observers. I use my life, even arguments with my wife. I’ll say “stop, let me write this down!” during the fight. I’ll even use situations with my kids. Situations that annoy me as well.
Q: Are your kids funny too?
My daughter is for sure. I had gotten some head shots done, and showed her. She asks “Who’s that, daddy?” I say “It’s daddy, honey.” She replies “No it’s not, the guy in these pictures are handsome.”
Q: What is the craziest thing you’ve experienced as a standup comic?
I did a show next to an airbase once. They were hazing some of the guys, who had ran on stage next to me completely naked. I stepped back, watched it happen, and the crowd went nuts. They were plenty of small dick jokes that followed. Those poor guys, they probably should have looked into something like Size Genetics before hopping on stage.
Q: What is your movie “Meet My Valentine” about?
It’s a movie about a father, who is a control freak, who finds out he’s dying. He wants to have control who raises his little girl. He decides to find his “replacement”, and puts his wife on Match.com. He realizes as he’s filling out her profile, that he doesn’t know anything about her. So he needs to learn about her in the end.
Q: Was it weird acting in something you had wrote?
It was! Only because when you’re writing something, you live in that world mentally for a long time. It’s a surreal experience when you’ve been imagining something, and super talented people make it a reality. One of the things they told me when we started production was one of the hardest parts of being an actor is people staring at you. I’m a comedian from New Jersey, who has people staring him down constantly in comedy clubs. I got this!
Q: Will you be like Alfred Hitchcock and be in all your films?
I hope so. I’d enjoy that. Now that I know I can do it, I want to give myself all the funny lines. It’s not my number one passion, or even my number two passion. If acting helps both passions, I’m all for it.
Q: What is your favorite part about going on tour? Worst part?
My favorite part has to be not having to be around my family..TOTALLY joking. For the longest time I was a hermit almost. I didn’t like leaving my house. ‘Ugh, I have to go all the way to the mailbox?’ Going on tour forced me to come out of my shell. I’ve gotten see that we’re all basically the same idiot.
Worst part? That I have to come home to my family. So joking, again. Being away from family, and living in a hotel room of course. You get to meet people, and make friends, but can only see them MAYBE once every eighteen months. I try to ring them as much as possible. Ideally, I’d like to get a big RV. Like a 70’s hippie.
Jay headlines Magooby’s this weekend! Buy tickets
Follow Jay on Twitter