by Andrew Wantuck
This week I spoke with Jo Koy, who is a rising star on the stand up comedy scene. He has made a name for himself as a regular on E! Television's Chelsea Lately as well as touring 10,000 person theaters with Carlos Mencia. This week we spoke about his day, his son, and The Jay Leno Show.
Andrew: How is your day going?
Jo Koy: I had to drive across town to Santa Monica to tape an episode of Chelsea Lately. When I was done there, I grabbed some lunch, and then went back to the writer's room at Dakota Pictures until about 7:00. Then I got in my car and drove down to Hermosa Beach, and did a quick set at The Comedy & Magic Club. It was a great day of comedy.
Andrew: So how is your son doing? Are there any new stories to tell?
Jo Koy: Is there ever a day when I don't have a story about my son? [laughs] Here is the latest. Everyone knows my son is crazy. He is 5 and I love him to death. He is a good crazy, he is the crazy you want to live with because it's fun. The other day he had a cookie that his uncle made, and I wasn't in the mood to eat a bunch of the cookies that day, and I just wanted to take a bite out of the cookie he was eating. So of course he was like, "Oh yeah, cool Dad". So I take a bite and I go to hand it back to him and he says "No, I don't want it anymore. I'm going to go get a new cookie". So I tell him, "No Jo, this is your cookie, you need to finish this one. I only took a little bite". And he starts yelling "No, I don't want that cookie!" And I'm trying to prove a point, he needs to listen to me. He starts crying at the top of his lungs. This goes on for about 15 minutes of me telling him he can't have a new cookie, that he has to eat his. So finally I just ask him, "Why don't you want to eat this cookie?", and he looks my straight in the face and says, "Because your breath stinks!" He says this while he is crying and eating the cookie I told him to eat! Can you believe that?
Andrew: [laughs] When you are away from the stage, and just hanging out, what actually makes you laugh?
Jo Koy: I think just about everything makes me laugh. I just love to laugh. I enjoy the art of comedy, and I love stand-up especially. But everything is funny; the people I hang around with, my son, my friends, being goofy, just looking at life in a funny way. I am never really am that serious throughout the day, it is very rare that you catch me in a serious mood. Anything from people tripping and falling to farting in public, anything can make me laugh.
Andrew: And what is something that really annoys you, something that you really hate?
Jo Koy: That's a tough one. Probably people talking on their cell phones overly loud, like they are talking into a walkie-talkie and everyone is part of the conversation. That is my biggest pet peeve. I just want to say, "Dude, hang it up, wait until you get into the car, and then talk! Because I really don't care what happened at your work today with you and whoever!"
Andrew: Do you have a moment in your career that really stands out from everything else?
Jo Koy: My "9th inning, 2 out, 2 strikes and I need a home run to win the game" moment would definitely have to be my Tonight Show appearance. That was my biggest moment. There was so much pressure on me, and that really is the biggest stage to be on right now on television. And I wanted to hit it out of the park, that was my home run. That was my Joe Carter.
Andrew: What is it like backstage a Jay Leno Show?
Jo Koy: The only way to put it is that it is the cream of the crop. Everything is just top notch, first class. He [Jay Leno] gives you a great gift. He comes backstage and talks with you. On all of the shows that I have done, the host has never come back to talk with me. And the biggest one, here he is, in the green room talking to me for like 30 minutes, with my dad, my 2 sisters, all of us just talking to Jay Leno, shooting the crap! It was so cool! And I just could not wait to get on stage. Once it happened, it was over with and I got the standing ovation baby!
Jo Koy will be headlining The Comedy & Magic Club on Thursday, November 19th - Saturday, November 21st, 2009. Reservations Required (310) 372-1193 or comedyandmagiclcub.com. ER