Where It’s Always a Pleasure to Visit
SARATOGA SPRINGS – I rang him up at the appointed time:
“Hi there, handsome man! Oh, wow – lemme tell you. Right now, I’m stuck at Costco, what a mess. You think I could ring you back?”
Well, in both life and showbiz, you need to be flexible. And certainly a performer with the bona fides of Bobby Collins is always worth waiting for. “Sure, take your time.”
Which also gives us a chance to have a word from our sponsor….
Comic Legend Bobby Collins will bring his one-man show of unique observations and ironies, to Universal Preservation Hall (one of the very few places he hasn’t played in his storied career,) on Saturday, March 25. Click HERE for tickets!
(Note: Commercials are always louder, but this is the best we can do on the ‘net.)
Thank you, and now back to our regularly scheduled show.
AG: So, how’s things these days?
BC: It’s good; I’m good. I just bought a new place down here (Delray Beach, FL) – hence the Costco run. I’m back up to playing the same amount of shows that I did before COVID. (Note: He averages about 200 shows/year.) But now, in addition to clubs, I’m getting more corporate and condo gigs, which is lucrative. After what we all went through, people need to laugh more than ever, I guess. But the phone’s been ringing off the hook; I’m very fortunate.
AG: You’ve had the privilege of opening for some world-class performers: Frank Sinatra, Cher and Dolly Parton to name just a few. In that format, do you alter your routine versus when you are a headliner, say at UPH? And, within that, do you alter things based on the performer you are opening for? In other words, are there ‘Cher jokes’ that wouldn’t fly with a Dolly audience?
BC: Yes, definitely – you have to read the room. But this is true with every show. You need to get a feel for your audience. People don’t know this, but I’m usually peeking out behind the curtain before the show starts, to get that feel. You can tell. If people are hooting it up, drinking, well, anything goes, you know you are going to let it rip and have fun. Other times, maybe not – but then again… say you see a table with a couple of guys wearing MAGA hats… well, you know I’m going to probe that a little. Regardless of the audience, I’m going to call it the way it is. You have to remember that they’re here to laugh, and laugh they shall! At least, the rest of the audience will. I have to say, it’s an experience thing.
AG: Speaking of experience, how about we give our audience a taste of the experience they will have when they see a Bobby Collins performance on March 25th at UPH? We went into the wayback machine to your ‘Comics for a Cause’ fundraiser on March 23, 2016…
BC: Hey, that sounds excellent!
AG: Fantastic, Bobby! Let’s deep dive a little more on your experience. Would you recommend standup as a career, and if so, what advice would you give to someone starting out?
BC: It can be a great life, but there are obstacles to overcome. You have to stick to it in the face of everything. Even the best, the funniest with all the natural gifts, has to find their place. There’s no shortcuts. And being on the road – travel is the biggest occupational hazard, I would say.
AG: You recently published a book – your second, titled “On the Outside.” Your first sold very well, and was titled “On the Inside.” Is the new one a continuation; a Part 2? Could you compare them?
BC: Yes, the first one did very well, I feel fortunate to say. “Outside” is a continuation of sorts, but it is more introspective, like a personal blog. To me, “On the Inside” was a series of vignettes where I’m the observer. You could read them in any order.
AG: Most people buy a condo in South Florida as a prelude to retirement…
BC: Not me! Why would I retire? I get paid to have fun!
Bobby Collins will bring his one-man, one night only show to UPH on Saturday, March 25. Tickets are $27.50 – $50.50, and are available on the UPH WEBSITE.