By Ryan Meehan
Ky is a quick witted, deep thinking, creative comic that keeps you guessing. Never straying far from real life experiences and lessons. Raised in cornfield, Ohio, he got his start at the Columbus Funny Bone. He is the kind of guy you don’t expect to see, but always leave wanting to hear more. He is often described as being a real, and fresh take on stage. Oh yeah, he is pretty damn funny. And he’s also our guest this week in 5 questions.
1. How does doing standup for you compare to doing tattoos, and which is more pressure?
I like this question. I have been creative all of my life. Many people will say that but it is completely true in my aspect. Since I was a kid I always expressed myself through the arts. My parents took wind early on and encouraged me through formal and informal settings. I did a variation of plays, art shows, poetry contest, creative writing, and public speaking that I feel rounded me to be setup to tackle anything. However my love of performing and being funny is what ultimately got me onto stage. I don’t really feel a tremendous amount of nervousness or pressure when I am performing because I am at home. I feel very comfortable.
However when I tattoo there is a moment of grief because I have to be on my toes and confident as this performance will last a lifetime. If I have a bad show I walk off stage defeated and sometimes anguished, but I return more confident and savvy the following night. If I walk out of the shop feeling that way, then that means someone will hate me the rest of their life. So I would say tattooing definitely can cause more on the side of pressure.
No matter which direction I go that day I usually go to sleep happy, which is the ultimate goal.
2. I know that you’ve played some rooms that are different from the atmosphere of a traditional comedy club. What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of performing at (for example) a pizza parlor?
When breaking into the world of touring and professional stand up you have to cut your teeth. Many times that comes at the price of a Blues Brothers with Chicken wire feel. I have performed in pizza parlors yes, and even less dignifying areas such as strip clubs. No matter what the venue I always give them 120%. A comedy club has more of a groomed audience and will follow you more through hoops and turns, however a rowdy audience will rarely chase you down the rabbit hole without a lot of coaxing and coddling. You can’t do the same act, but you can do the same energy. It makes you learn how to handle yourself and adjust for the ride ahead. Mastering these techniques turn you into a better performer and will make you stand out amongst your peers. I would like to think I have a good idea of how to work any room, but in the end the audience will be the final judge.
3. Say I get one weekend a year off and I have chosen to spend it in one Midwestern city. Sell me on why it should be Columbus, OH.
Columbus, Oh or Cleveland are both comedy bliss. You wouldn’t associate either city in recent years with comedy given the sports teams and economic roller coaster, however both cities have incubated a strong comedy scene. The local comics have built a strong community of open mics, improv, workshops, variety shows, and of course you have your mecca, one of the best clubs in the country, the Columbus Funny Bone. The acts coming through that club are top notch household names. It is also one of the only clubs in the nation running 7 days a week with packed audiences every show. Almost unheard of in the middle of nowhere United States, let alone east coast or west.
4. What’s the most fun you’ve ever had doing a show and what made it so special?
One of the best shows I ever had was with fellow comedian Tom Simmons. We were scheduled to work together and to make a very long story short, had more of a bonding experience than anything. We basically got to our condo that was in the ghetto, a very low budget apartment to suggest the clubs financial troubles. When arriving to the condo we had a 14 year old run away squatter harbored inside hiding from police. Showtime was in 20 minutes and I had to shower and shave. Being that neither one of us were on the lease nor did we at the time know each other it was quite the comical moment for two men who spend most of their lives trying to write things this good. At the end of the night we had gotten to know each other better and realized we could have been prime candidates for a night time talk show. Made it an unforgettable series of shows reliving the moment that week on stage for each audience.
5. What’s ahead for you in the coming 12 months?
In the next 12 months I will be finishing up my tattoo apprenticeship. I took a bit of time off of my regular touring so I could finish up the necessary qualifications of this craft so that I may work anywhere in the state/on the road. This will allow me to help fund my travels and also keep the idol hands at bay. I have a lot of dates on the calendar for next year and will be touring the midwest, and southern coasts.
Ky explaining Derek Vana’s tattoos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkwnzEH2TbA
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