JACKIE KASHIAN FOR ONLY $5! This is why SF Comedy rocks. This Monday night at Club Deluxe -- where you can see some of the most intimate comedic performances you'll ever see -- you get Jackie Kashian for only $5. Jackie is the goods! Funny. Smart. Snarky. Earnest. Wisconsin-y. And well respected.
Jackie is everywhere you want a good comedian to be.* She's liked by all the right people to be liked by.** She is good friends with and regularly performs with Maria Bamford. Jackie has been on the podcast WTF with Marc Maron. She's got a critically acclaimed CD called "It Is Never Going To Be Bread" on Stand Up! Records. She's got her own podcast called, The Dork Forest.*** She's got a Comedy Central half hour special. She even suffered the slings and arrows of Last Comic Standing and lived to tell the tale. And Monday night, all this comedic wonderfulness is going to be at Club Deluxe here in San Francisco for five flippin' dollars.
Monday nights at Club Deluxe are run by local comedian/promoter/producer Big Al Gonzales who is fast becoming the Bay Area's 21st Century Bill Graham of Comedy.****
Al has always got his fingers in several different shows (four weekly and one monthly) and a couple different comedy tours (Big Al's Big Ass Show & The Burger Kings if Comedy). And he always seems to be announcing something else. I honestly don't know how (or why) he does it, but Club Deluxe is one of the main ones. It's one of those classically, great, grimy comedy spots. It is where comedy should be born. It is decorated in an Art Deco style, so it even feels like the 60's a little, back when comedy was hip ... no, hep ... and North Beach was the center of it all and not something to be avoided like the two front row tickets to Charlie Sheen.*****
The comedy you get at Deluxe feels more immediate. Maybe because you could comb a comic's hair without ever getting out of your chair. Comedy should germinate in dark saloons. Deluxe is one of those rare venues for comedy that shouldn't work but it does. It is dark and cramped. There are weird support beams that cut off major sight lines to the stage. The bar is within spitting distance of the stage so you can hear every beer ordered and every person who decides to give up on the show and return to conversation. The stage itself is tiny, so us comics can forget all that Dane Cookery******, jumping around stuff that helps to sell the joke. You just better stand there and be funny.
When it is packed and the comics are killing it, you feel like you are in on an awesome secret. But also when it's only got 15 people in it, somehow everything still can turn out fine. Like maybe these are the only people cool enough to listen to these jokes. And for extra bonus cool points Club Deluxe is basically at the corner of Haight and Ashbury.*******
Big Al has managed to get some awesome comics to come play here, including Doug Stanhope, Tom Rhodes, Kyle Kinane, Laurie Kilmartin, Felipe Esparza, and even Robin Williams. Big Al says, "I do this because I love comedy and I love producing shows that bring people back where they say wow, I did not expect that." Jackie Kashian for only five measly dollars? Wow, I did not expect that!
* According to her MySpace page, she is a DVD extra on the Comedians of Comedy. I have no idea how that works exactly. But MySpace doesn't lie.
** Patton Oswalt, Greg Behrendt, Doug Benson, Kathleen Madigan, Paul F. Tompkins, etc...
*** All of the above comics have been on her podcast except for Patton. What up with that, Patton?
**** Tony Sparks is going to kill me alleging that it isn't him. Please forgive me, Tony.
***** Oops. That is one Charlie Sheen joke to far. Sorry.
****** I'm thinking of myself by the way.
******* Is that corner cool again now that The Gap is gone?
"Kamau's Komedy Korner" is a weekly blog column about San Francisco comedy. Check back next Wednesday for more.
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