RooftopBlog RooftopBlog Home RooftopComedy.com

Categories

Auggie Smith Interview

By Jono Simrin

If you asked Auggie Smith to name his major influences, chances are he’d list the pantheon of ‘80s rock gods before he got to George Carlin or Richard Pryor. On his latest album, Smell the Thunder, he rocks out just as much as he rips on politics. Rooftop got a chance to chat with Auggie about his favorite Idaho bars, his inherent disappointment with Sarah Palin, and what the federal government can learn from strip clubs.

Rooftop: The cover art for your new album, Smell the Thunder, is certainly not your typical stand-up comedy album. How did you come up with the artwork concept?

Auggie Smith: I was a teenager during the ‘80s, which was the worst and best time for music and it was obviously wonderful for glam-rock Ronnie James Dio types at the time. And I used to love the album cover art of that. So that was basically the idea. My whole life, I’ve really wanted one of those concert t-shirts that rock bands have where you have the cover art on the front and on the back all of your tour dates. So I’m hoping next year that I’ll also be able to sell t-shirts with the Smell the Thunder cover on the front and all my tour dates on the back.

RT: In many of your jokes, you gradually speak louder and louder until you’re essentially shouting the punchline. How did you develop that style of delivery?

AS: I spent the first nine years of my career doing mostly crappy gigs. When you go into a bar in Idaho, that’s in a hotel and they don’t turn off the pool tables and you’re the first guy on a cold stage, you get to a point where you just want them to listen to you. I got to a point where I just started doing really stilting ways of speech. I would get really loud and really quiet—basically just to get them to pay attention to me. And as I started doing that, I started to really enjoy the whole yelling and ranting style of it. I’ve really actually relaxed quite a bit. People don’t believe that, but I’ve really kind of slowed down. I take the responsibility of doing the show very, very seriously. The crowd comes out and they get a babysitter. Maybe they go out to eat. By the time they get to the show and have a couple drinks, they’ve invested quite a bit of money to see you that night. And there should be a real immediacy to the comedian’s performance. There should be no slacking off. And sometimes I think that energy builds up inside you. And the only way it can come out is by yelling.

RT: During an appearance on The Bob & Tom Show, you did a bit about seat belt laws and how they exemplify an overbearing federal government. Has Sarah Palin offered to sponsor your upcoming tour?
AS: First of all, when Sarah Palin was first announced as the vice presidential candidate, I was so excited. And then she started talking and I was so disappointed. I wanted there to be substance so badly, but the point of that is any politician that tells you they’re for a smaller government is lying. I don’t want less comedy and strip clubs don’t want less incest. The point is they need these things and politicians need government. If you want smaller government, what about this: hey, don’t run for office. So should people wear seat belts? Hell yeah. Should they be told to do that? Hell no. What control do we have over our own lives if we have to be told to strap ourselves into our own car? God damn. The key to doing any sort of stand-up material is that you have to understand that half your audience, no matter what your view on something is, disagrees with you. The key is to pick out a small facet of it that is either so ridiculous it can be funny or something people haven’t thought of before. What I do is I take my opinion and take it to the furthest possible, most ridiculous point. I think comedy is about making the accessible ridiculous or the ridiculous accessible. So when you take something that seems fairly normal, like the seatbelt law, and then you turn it into the most ridiculous thing possible, then you have something.

RT: Well you certainly have plenty of federal government legislation material to work with today.

AS: You don’t have “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in Major League Baseball. We don’t have it in the NFL and we don’t have it in the NBA and we don’t have it in the NHL, but yet nobody’s ever come out in any of these sports. We all know that there are gay soldiers right now, but we only want the cowardly gay soldiers that stay in the closet. We don’t want the ones that are out, because do you know how hard it would be, to be out in the Marines? Holy shit. That has to be the toughest motherfucker in the world to be able to do that. Isn’t that the guy we want? The guy that’s out, not the guy that’s in the closet. It just seems pretty obvious to me, but what do I know.

Pick up your copy of “Smell the Thunder” at the Rooftop Comedy Shop

Comments

Comment from gold assay service
Time: December 24, 2010, 4:32 am

oop

Comment from Roger Waters
Time: December 27, 2010, 2:59 am

Loved the interview!

Comment from Genny sorap
Time: December 30, 2010, 3:46 am

His interviews so nice to me because there are more tips search ..
http://southbeachjava.org/

Comment from how to win back your ex girlfriend
Time: December 30, 2010, 4:28 am

cool blog dear,keep up the good work,thanks for providing such information.i have just completed learning french now. i really appreciate the excellent quality content you are posting here for free for your online readers.

Comment from detoxification body
Time: December 30, 2010, 11:02 am

It is amazing at how far they will go! I admire you and thank you for trying to wake people up with all the great information you are putting out there.

Comment from Car Classifieds
Time: January 3, 2011, 12:45 am

One half of my bookmark bar is stuffed with your pages. My spouse and i find your post interesting and just wanted to thank you for the work which you do.

Comment from Acai Lipo
Time: January 4, 2011, 3:09 am

thanks for create this and its awesome for 2011.

Comment from social media
Time: January 4, 2011, 6:35 pm

A great way to relax is to read your posts. I will do this everyday from now on. Please update us more.

Comment from Palma
Time: January 10, 2011, 12:21 am

Well, most of the lace wigs used to make wigs comes from Asian countries like China. Therefore, most of the lace front wigs donated is black and straight. Of course, not every one wants a wig made from straight, black hair. Some people want blond hair wigs or wavy hair wigs.

Comment from Laptop Bag Manufacturer
Time: January 17, 2011, 1:35 am

good job

Comment from banner printing
Time: January 17, 2011, 2:48 am

In most cases I do not make a comment on blogs, but I have to say that this post really forced me to do so. Really nice post!

Comment from Martinclinton smith
Time: January 23, 2011, 1:52 am

Thanks for sharing information and i like it and you wrote very well.

Comment from Laptop Backpack Manufacturer
Time: January 24, 2011, 2:00 am

very nice post, good job

Comment from Google Websites and Seo
Time: February 2, 2011, 4:04 am

Google Websites and Seo

Comment from Mobile Phone Reviews
Time: February 2, 2011, 4:04 am

Mobile Phone Reviews

Comment from Home And Garden Decor
Time: February 2, 2011, 4:05 am

Home And Garden Decor

Comment from online loans
Time: February 2, 2011, 5:37 am

I like your blog,and also like the article,and thank you for provide me so much information :) )

Comment from South Beach java
Time: February 3, 2011, 4:59 am

Totally, it took me roughly 25 minutes to find this great post. Thanks a ton.

Comment from Grout Stain
Time: February 8, 2011, 11:24 am

Comedians often have the ability to see our points of view as ridiculous. It is important for our society to question and not always accept.

Comment from Leanspa Cleanse
Time: February 9, 2011, 4:57 am

its a awesome blog and i am searching it from three hrs, its so amazing.

Comment from motion tracking
Time: February 9, 2011, 6:55 am

Very informative post. Thanks for taking the time to share your view with us.

Comment from Briefcase Bag Factory
Time: February 12, 2011, 12:16 am

many thanks, good job

Comment from permanent hair removal
Time: February 20, 2011, 9:42 pm

Nice post . keep up the good work. Thanks!!

Comment from New York Defensive Driving
Time: February 28, 2011, 1:15 am

Thanks for the Information, thanks for your useful Post. Keep the good work!!

Comment from potty training
Time: February 28, 2011, 10:44 pm

I cant believe this is true

Comment from iphone 4 case
Time: March 15, 2011, 9:57 pm

I would like to thankx for the time you have contributed in composing this article. I am hoping the same best blogpost from you in the upcoming as well.

Comment from sunglasses
Time: March 16, 2011, 11:09 pm

Great show in KC man! See you next time!

Comment from perfumes
Time: March 16, 2011, 11:13 pm

ou are amazing! Thanks for the laughs at Go Bananas in Cinci.
You rock, Aug! =)

Comment from digital cameras
Time: March 16, 2011, 11:16 pm

HOPE YOU HAVE A NICE EASTER DAY! CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YA BACK IN KANSAS! KEEP UP THE LAUGHS!

Comment from Maruti Estilo
Time: March 21, 2011, 4:32 am

It seems like this is a great topic to discuss and I’m looking to see what comes from future research.