Q&A with comedian Bobby Collins

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Bobby Collins has starred in both TV shows and movies, but his reputation in comedy is the real backbone of his career -- and he'll visit Charlotte to demonstrate just that this Wednesday, April 21 at McGlohon Theatre. Having released two CDs (On the Inside and Out of Bounds), Collins has toured extensively with his stand-up -- most of which is made up of his own observations and matters to which diverse audiences can relate. He's funny, and cleaner than most, but don't think he's going to G-rate any of the smart-ass thoughts that frequently spring to his mind.  Creative Loafing caught up with Collins and asked about the start of his career in the comedy biz, as well as what audiences can expect at his shows.

Creative Loafing: Did you always want to be a comedian? How long have you been doing this?

Bobby Collins: Yes. I’ve been doing it about 26 years. I think I was funny growing up in New York City because I used to use my mouth to get out of fights. Everybody would say, “This guys the funny bastard!” It got me out of fights, but of course I didn’t want to be a slut, - meaning lazy guy -  because I came from a poor working class family. So, I worked my way up to the vice president of Calvin Klein. From there, I was going out every night at the comedy club because that was what my goal was. But I didn’t want to be one of those comics - the ones that have died out - that would sleep to 12 or 1 p.m., get up, write a little material and then go to the clubs at night, be social and hang out. I was motivated. Jerry Seinfeld, Larry Miller, Drew Carey, we all came up together, so it was just a lot of fun and we knew what it took and what work was involved to succeed as a national touring comic.

How do you describe your current show?

Well it’s kind of funny because this year I’ve ventured out into different areas that I normally wouldn’t work. I think what’s best is that I try to entertain and educate. The best messages go through with comedy. If you can make people laugh they’ll look at the same window that you and I look through, but at a different angle. You know what I mean? And that’ll make them swallow it in a different way. They always get something. I talk about everything from family to government to places I’ve just been. People love to hear about other places. For example, I was just down at a place called Daytona Beach, Florida. What a shit hole that place is! A friend of mine called me up and goes, “Where are you?” I said, ‘I’m at the intersection of broken dreams, lost commoners and failure.’ He said, “It’s that bad?”  and I said ‘Let’s put it this way, they’re not banning trans-fats here.’

Tickets are $25. Show starts at 7:30 p.m. McGlohon Theatre, 345 N. College St. 704-372-1000. www.blumenthalcenter.org.

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