Wait, wait, don't tell us... is what we said to ourselves after booking an interview with comedian, actor, and producer Brian Babylon who is known for Why? With Hannibal Buress, Inside Amy Schumer and Stupify as well as being a recurring panelist on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me. Babylon's latest project is his debut comedy album, cleverly titled Babylon Ball Z and features hilarious, relatable stories that will have you chuckling all the way to work on your morning commute.
Please enjoy this exclusive interview from TheThings!
TheThings (TT): Babylon Ball Z is your debut comedy album but you are hardly a newbie to the comedy scene. Why have you not put out a comedy album before?
Brian Babylon (BB): No, I have never put out a comedy album before. It is my first and I am very excited.
TT: Your album was filmed live in San Francisco. Why did you choose the San Francisco location for your live audience? Were there any interesting or funny stories that happened while recording the album?
BB: I did not choose SF, SF chose me more about logistics. I also wanted to do it somewhere out of my comfort zone, not LA, Chicago or NYC. One thing that stands out is a joke that always does well... I made a very small mistake and it did not work. I'll let you see if you can figure out which one it was. I left it in because of something the Sklar brothers told me if you make a mistake leave it in. Sometimes people try to make comedy albums too perfect.
TT: Being in front of an audience is nothing new to you but knowing that you were recording an album, was the performance different in any way… more nerve-wracking or exciting, etc...?
BB: Definitely more exciting, not nerve-wracking at all. I was more excited to get it out!
TT: In your career, you wear many different hats from hosting/producing a radio show, to TV appearances (such as Inside Amy Schumer) to producing Why? With Hannibal Buress to performing stand-up. Have you found that one is a more natural fit for you over the others or do you have an equal appreciation for all of them?
BB: Equal appreciation for all of them for sure. I was a media producer prior to doing stand up but I love getting on stage and having fun and connecting to the audience. The basic things that make stand up fun. Just off red state tour with Hannibal had the best time ever with people who are not from big cities they appreciated my jokes just as much as someone from NYC or Chicago.
TT: Who are your favorite comedians? Are there any comedians who have influenced your career?
BB: My favorite comedians... of course there are the classics, the usual suspects Dave Chappelle and Eddie Murphy, but I always felt that my fellow Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me, panelist, Alonzo Bodden pushed me creatively because I felt he was my style comedian. In an age when black comics where forced into "urban comedy."
TT: Your comedy career began in Chicago but now you are based in L.A. How does the comedy scene differ in these cities and how is it similar?
BB: I always feel Chicago is the best place to start comedy because its a great city with real audiences and you get a taste of all types of people versus East Coast or West Coast.
TT: What is one sage piece of advice or some words of wisdom that you wish you knew when you were starting your career?
BB: I wish I hadn't stayed at my morning radio job a WBEZ public radio in Chicago as long as I did. I should have started comedy for real and not given my talent to that company for so long.
TT: Can you tell us about your favorite joke from Babylon Ball Z?
BB: My favorite joke is 22 Retarded. This joke is a good way to close the album as it pretty much sums up my life.
TT: Do you have any other upcoming projects you can tell us about? Is another comedy album in the works?
BB: My next comedy album will come much faster than this one. My next project coming up is finishing the development of the Give Me Truth game show. It's America's favorite documentary game show.
TT: Finally, can you share your favorite book with our readers?
BB: The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America by Erik Larson. It's about Chicago.
Readers, if you're looking to treat yourself to some good laughs, be sure to check out Brian's debut comedy album, Babylon Ball Z. You can also keep up with the latest news of this comedian's career by following his Twitter account @brianbabylon.