Comedy group Me n You Productions will host their monthly stand-up showcase on Friday July 10th at The Platform Arts Center on 116 W. Mulberry St. in Downtown Baltimore, MD. The Platform Arts Center is a bijou art gallery that services its community through visual art and self expression. The showcase, aptly titled The Art of Comedy, features 8 comedians and a host–yours truly. The shows are free, fierce, funny and include stand-up, video sketches, songs and complementary drinks–tips are greatly encouraged and highly appreciated. I recently had the privilege of interviewing one of the evenings featured comedians, Phoenyx Rising.
Phoenyx Rising, that’s a really cool name. How’d you acquire it?
Phoenyx came to me in the shower, where God seems to give me answers to most of my questions. I like the meaning of the mythological bird, so I didn’t dispute it….I found it synonymous with my life and thought it was a fit.
When did you realize you were funny?
I’ve always been told I was funny, but I’d never taken it to heart. I still just see myself as having fun, the only difference is the expectation of people who are watching and waiting to laugh.
What do you do when you’re not doing comedy?
Working full time as a Family Advocate, working with my radio show and enjoying time with friends and family…I’m rarely home.
Do you have to be in a certain element or mode to write a joke?
A lot of it comes from just conversations and interaction with friends and family, I try not to write, then it feels like a job, I just jot mental notes or record something on my phone related to a topic and hope I remember it before I hit the stage.
Can you recall a gig that made you want to quit comedy?
I can’t say that there was a gig that made me want to quit, maybe more so times in my life when I wasn’t really feeling like I wanted to perform for other people. I almost gave up recently when I lost a very special person in my life to lung cancer. I was out of it for a minute, still haven’t recovered fully, but her inspiration and penchant for success has been a driving force to getting back in the saddle.
What is the message in your comedy?
Be real with yourself! We all do shit, go through shit and have experiences that may not be the most pleasant, but once they’ve passed, it’s easy to laugh at them and move on. Wait for the next glitch and work that out, too..life is short, just have fun.
Is Wu-Tang for the babies?
Lyrically or mentally…I MEAN, AYO, CAMOUFLAGE CHAMELEON, NIGGAS SCALING YOUR BUILDING NO TIME TO GRAB THE GUNS, THEY ALREADY GOT YOUR WIFE AND CHILDREN..Wu-Tang is for anybody who has an ear for good music and a message. You can hear so much listening to Wu’s artists. I consider babies anyone who hasn’t found a messenger of music, yet, so naaaah, if you aren’t listening for messages, don’t Wu.
If you were a Muppet baby, which one would you be and why?
Have you been watching my fb…lmaooooo….umm, everyone knows I looooooove The Muppets, so this is a no brainer, but it’s still hard. I’d be Ms. Piggy, a cute, fat chick, who can skate, holds no punches, values her friendships and really loves herself. But I definitely have some Animal traits, I grew up with these guys, so I love them all… I took a little something from each of them, but Piggy is definitely my favorite.
Do you have a preshow ritual?
Yup. Jeezy, GZA and Lil Wayne on full blast give me a jump start, all else is trust that God knew what he was doing when he put me in front of people.
What’s an aroma that most people love but you hate?
Lavender, make my stomach turn…uuugh (u should see my face, right now)
How long have you been doing comedy and how has the scene for women changed since you started doing stand-up?
Since November 2012, I don’t really do comparisons and contrasts of how women fair on the scene. I place my focus on this being more of a calling than a craft and use that to keep me from falling into that talk about how we don’t get the same opportunities and shit like that. I prefer to just have fun with it, no expectations. If I start looking for things to be a certain way based on my gender, I may find myself in a battle I’m not armed to fight. I’ve heard female comics talk about the challenges of the game, but I really don’t put stock in that kind of talk, challenges are meant to be conquered. What some see as I challenge, I see as a chance to make change…I owe Sallie Mae too much money to see sex as a barrier.
Who are some sexy comedians?
Sommore is sexy, sassy, I like her….Sexy isn’t a look, tho, it’s about appeal, so I guess that makes Jamie Foxx sexy, too, that diversity of his is fine as a muvaaaaa (I’ma shut my mouth)
Was that a sexist question?
Who makes you laugh?
My friends, family, and kids. It doesn’t take much to make me laugh. I laugh at all kinds of stuff. . .life is funny, but I loooooove Will Ferrell movies and old school films with those 80’s icons like: Jim Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, and Chase, but I laugh at everything.
What’s the weirdest place you ever did comedy?
I just did a show at a cookout, but I’m on the marquee for an upcoming show at a strip club, so we shall see how weird that is …I’m still in the crawl stages of this game, so I expect a couple of Five Heartbeat, jook joint shows in my future…..lololol
Which sounds more appealing kumquat or rutabaga?
The kumquat…..what kind of question is that…is it edible, if it’s edible, it’s appealing!
What should we expect from you on Friday?
EVERYTHNG YOU’VE HEARD AND THEN SOME! WAIT, do I have to be clean…lemme know now, because I have to work on that a lil harder…lmaoooooo!! This is not a clean show.
Should I wear shorts or pants for the show—if you know what I mean? (J.K. I don’t mean anything)
IN THE WORDS OF DIGITAL UNDERGROUND….WHERE WHATCHA LIIIIKE!! WEAR SHORTS, IT GETS HOT WHERE THERE IS PHOENYX!!! 😈😚😉😇😌
The Art of Comedy features diverse comic talent from the D.C., Virginia, and Maryland region. The show starts at 8:30. Seats can be reserved by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.