The stories comedians have from the time before their fame are always the best. It’s always grinding through sets at comedy clubs, eating 4AM “dinners” around New York City, and working odd jobs to make ends meet. Jo Koy’s story might be the best of them all.
He is performing at Foxwoods on November 11 and is honestly one of the funniest comedians out there right now. We were lucky enough to get the chance to ask him some questions before his show to find out what makes him tick and how he got his start.
Check out our interview with Jo Koy below and get your tickets to his show now!
CT Boom: You’re one of very few comedians to get a standing ovation on The Tonight Show. Can you tell us what that moment was like and how you think it impacted your career?
JK: I was in complete shock when I saw the whole audience stood up, and I was more in shock when Jay Leno waved me over to sit on the panel. I was told in the green room I wasn’t going to be interviewed by Jay. I was working at Nordstrom Rack in the Shoe Department and I didn’t realize how many people watch the Tonight Show until the next day when every other customer said, “Hey you were great on the Tonight Show last night… Can I get this shoe in a size 9?”
CT Boom: You filmed your special “Don’t Make Him Angry” in New York, and I’m always curious how comedians choose the place to actually film the set that becomes a special. What made you choose New York? What kind of thinking goes into that decision?
JK: I love New York and I thought it would be great to shoot my first special in the Big Apple.
CT Boom: People always seem interested in how comedians get their start. What was the process like to go from normal person to person who stands on stage telling jokes?
JK: It wasn’t hard for me, mainly because I used to dream about being a comedian every single day. When I finally got the stage, I was living my dream.
CT Boom: A lot of comedians seem to get involved with podcasts. What drew you to start a project in that medium and why do you think it attracts so many comedians?
JK: One thing I love to do is ad lib and improvise – my podcasts give me that freedom, and with Adam Carolla backing me up it was perfect.
CT Boom: Outside of stand-up what is your favorite form of media to work in? TV, podcasts, movies, etc.?
JK: All of the above.
CT Boom: Any time I hear stories about comedians’ personal lives, it seems like comedy seems to have its own little social network. Who would be your favorite comedian or comedians to hang out with after a set and why?
JK: The guys I take on the road with me are the guys I hang out with.
CT Boom: Can you tell us a little bit about the charitable work you do and why you like to give back?
JK: I do work with Lupus Foundation sometimes. My older sister has Lupus so I like to get involved, give back, and bring awareness whenever I can.
CT Boom: You talked with the Miami News Times a little bit about your son and using him in your act. Do you worry there will ever be a point where he won’t want to be a part of it or is he as all-in as you are for making people laugh?
JK: He loves it!
CT Boom: What’s your post-set routine? How do you wind down and let loose after a show?
JK: I like to meet and greet the audience. I like to shake hands and talk to people. This might sound boring, but I typically just look for a local diner and grab something to eat.