2014 Gig One Hundred and Twenty Six: Edinburgh Fringe and Gig One Hundred and Twenty Seven: Late and Live

After my day off for the Edinburgh Fringe I was back at it with two gigs for the night. I was also happy to find crowds back on the rise which not so surprisingly coincided with an upswing in the weather.  It was good to see people out and about again especially as that opens the door for the opportunity to flyer punters into your show.  I also managed to see this piece of performance art:


Fan Fiction Comedy favourite Steven Boyce discovers the set back to big fingers.


Then I checked out UK comedian/radio presenter (disc jockey?  Do they still call them that here or am I stuck in a Kenny Everett time loop?) Christian O'Connell's sold out show which went down a treat.  While I was walking to my venue I bumped into a lady who had attended my show earlier in the week so I had a chat with her before getting into show mode.  The set list was:


Johnny Loves Mary Forever 1994


It was a good audience and I had fun but I was mildly off with my timing.  It is amazing how you can knock off 14 shows in a row, take one day off and feel a little out with your timing.  I don't believe it would have been anything that anyone would have noticed but I felt just a little "word salad" onstage.  It didn't happen all the way through the show but it did happen enough to be annoyed by it.  Regardless of that I still enjoyed the show and thought the audience was fun.

Then it was time for "Late and Live".  I hadn't seen the show since 2001 when I watched some very good comedians have to battle for their lives with some expert heckling.  I'd never seen anything quite like it before (and possibly since) and I have always felt that since I hadn't done the gig I was missing something on my resume.  I'm not a big fan of gladiatorial comedy normally.  I lost interest in that type of stuff when I hit forty.  The idea that you can win over a bunch of arseholes was always a young persons game.  When I was younger I always felt like I'd achieved something but now I just couldn't be arsed. Having said that I was pretty excited to finally do this gig.


Mickey D was fantastic as the host.


My old pal Mickey D was the host and he is just built for these types of gigs.  He was so good wrestling an indifferent and slightly spiky audience into submission.  I was on second after a musical act and pretty much from the moment I hit the stage you could feel the antagonism brewing in the audience.  From a wave of indifference at the beginning I knew I was going to have my work cut out for me and then the heckling started.  This might sound strange but I was excited.  I've heard such great stories from legends like Greg Fleet and Anthony Morgan that I wanted that full on experience too.  I told the hecklers give me all you've got, I want the full "Late and Live" show.

Unfortunately it just wasn't that clever.  What I'd seen years ago had been inventive but this was just a dude yelling out incoherent stuff.  There was even a punter close the stage who was telling me that he thought that guy up the back was an arse and he was ruining the gig.  This made no sense to me.  I was expecting everyone to join in but it was a half hearted heckler and people just getting annoyed.  I wanted the big story and I'm not even certain I ended up with a couple of sentences lost in an over written paragraph.

Still I was pretty rapt to have finally done the gig and really enjoyed watching Mickey when he hit the stage again.  He is a tank, a finely tuned artillery machine and he ripped into the heckler.  I wouldn't say that I dealt with it to the best of my abilities. Back home I would let rip but I was too busy here enjoying the moment.  I did have a number of women after the gig (when I say a number I mean four but that seems a lot, right?) who told me they enjoyed my spot and thought I was funny with how I encouraged it. That was interesting!  Now that I have a "Late and Live" story but when I'm back in Australia and Fleety and Morgs are talking about their spots I won't bother joining in as my story isn't interesting enough.

But I will be able to nod my head as someone who has finally experienced it.


Justin Hamilton

15th of August, 2014