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Interview: Jeff Allen of “Apostles of Comedy: Onwards and Upwards”

posted by Nell Minow

The very funny Jeff Allen answered my questions about his new DVD, Apostles of Comedy: Onwards & Upwards.

When did you first know you were funny?

I thought I was funny when I started stand up comedy in Chicago; the audience thought differently. My first big laugh came when I started screaming about my junky VW bug. That’s when I knew I could make people laugh at a club.

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Did being funny get you in or out of trouble?Jeff-Allen

Yeah, you learn quick as a young man, you are either a fighter or a talker. I was a talker and a smart aleck. My mouth got me in all kinds of trouble until I got my timing down.

Do audiences respond differently in different parts of the country?

Earlier in my career I found that to be true. But now, I have kind of honed in on marriage and kids, they aren’t much different universally, so it is pretty consistent now wherever I go.

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What’s the toughest part of being on the road and the best part?

The toughest is the travel and being away from my friends and family, the best part is the people I get to meet as well as some of the golf courses I get to play that I never would have, had I not traveled there.

What’s the best advice you ever got about doing stand up?

Someone told me to take care of the only thing I have control over and everything else will take care of itself. The only thing I have control over is my act, what I say.

What or who makes you laugh?

Slapstick in movies and (comedian) Brian Regan in stand up.

What kind of welcome do you get from Christian audiences?

They seem to like me, have you heard otherwise?

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Why can we hear truth through comedy that we don’t in other ways?

Most times when people talk about truth it comes off as preaching, most people don’t like to be preached to and put up walls. Comedy knocks those walls down and it opens people’s ears up and they hear a little better.

How do you make the frustrating or scary aspects of every day life funny?

It’s just how I process life, when I am stressed all the people around me suffer. So rather than put them through the ringer, I will try to make a joke about it and it is like a release valve. I learned this early in life. It helped me survive growing up.

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