By: Zac Rankin
It was two hours of non-stop laughs when comedians Trixx and Monty Scott played at the Observatory last week. Trixx is a regular on Much Music’s Video on Trial and Stars Gone Wild and has a popular YouTube channel TrixxComedy. You may have seen Monty on MTV’s Cocktales.
After their show, Trixx and Monty sat down with the Times and had a wide-ranging conversation over drinks about what it takes to be a comedian, the Canadian comedy scene, college audiences and their brand of comedy.
“I knew the job was going to be hard when I started out, but I didn’t expect it to be this hard. Over seven years I have managed to create two hours of usable material,” said Monty. The amount of work required to be successful comedian is one reason Monty holds Louis CK in such high regard. “Louis has been around the business for over 20 years and has a great track record of developing new and high quality material each year.”
“There are no risk takers in Canadian comedy, it is too safe,” said Trixx. “I have been invited to perform at American comedy festivals but not Canadian festivals. Urban comedians like me are not going to get invited unless you have already made it big like Russell Peters.”
Both comics are critical of Canada’s efforts to develop homegrown artists. “When you go to Europe and you turn on the equivalent to a Much Music or an MTV countdown you get your Beyonces, Jay-Zs etc, but unlike Canada you also get a lot of local artists from France, Belgium or wherever you are,” said Scott.
The two comedians are currently touring colleges throughout Ontario and Quebec. “When I play college crowds I focus my material on things that they really relate to like sex and pop culture” said Trixx. “Students don’t really want to hear me sound off on politics.”
Comics often have to deal with drunks and sometimes belligerent hecklers. College crowds can “get pretty rowdy” said Monty. “Never give them the mic. The best thing a comic can do is turn the crowd on the heckler, eventually he will realize that he is ruining the show, think ‘Damn, I am the asshole here’ and he will sit down.”
Trixx described himself as an observational comic who has material that is accessible to everyone. “Take my joke about kids’ birthday parties, everyone can relate to that joke,” said Trixx. “I play more than colleges. I recently killed it in a room where everyone was 50 plus”.
“I like one-liner comedians though that’s not my style,” said Trixx. “The form is very limited; Anthony Jeselnik (well known American stand-up comedian) has taken that form as far as it can go.”
Monty described himself as an absurdist comic. “My sister fucking joke is not a joke that I use all the time even though it is one of my favourites, I take the temperature of the crowd before I use some material.”
Canada has a tradition of producing great comedians from Wayne and Shuster to Dan Akryod and Tom Green, most of whom have played the college circuit. So next time come out and get a glimpse of the future of Canadian comedy.