PJ Gallagher explains why rain is good news for stand-up comedians
A bit of cloudy comedy to cure the empty summer show epidemic.
Nick Webb presented a rib-tickling episode of The Capital B, JOE's business podcast, last week as he talked to comedians PJ Gallagher and Aidan Bishop about comedy as they both discussed their careers, the paths they are taking and the state of Irish comedy at the moment and for the future.
PJ Gallagher was the first guest on the mic for the show and he admitted that he never saw himself working at what he described as a normal job.
"I wasn't really good at anything else. I was good at telling stories but never had the concept of what a normal job might be," said Gallagher.
Although he can be heard and seen on various platforms, he still believes that live stand-up comedy is his bread and butter.
"You can make revenue from TV and radio but you can't rely on it. You can't make individual careers out of them but you can out of stand up."
However, stand up wasn't always Gallagher's number one choice of profession and at one stage considered dipping his toes into the world of acting.
"I find out very soon, you can act all you want, but making money as an actor is another thing" said Gallagher.
Instead, Gallagher choose his current path and has been doing stand up for 21 years now and in those years, he has seen a lot of changes.
Talking about prices, he said: "They have been fairly static for a long time, especially for arena shows. If you see the likes of the John Bishop and Chris Rock is coming to the 3Arena and I can't wait to see the price of those tickets, I'd say they'll be ludicrous - way too much to pay for anyone to stand there and talk nonsense for a while."
And when asked about numbers increasing in the last few years, Gallagher revealed that making business in the summer months is not a laughing matter.
"The clubs were dead for a long time. Stand up suffered a lot. For some reason, the summer never recovered. People just don't want to pay to be inside in the summer months. So June, July and August, forget about it."
Nick Webb's next interview was with Aidan Bishop during the AIB business brainstorm before the show wrapped up. Bishop, as described by Webb, is the "guy behind the international comedy club" which runs five shows every week.
"It's a great business" said Bishop. "I don't work. You guys have to work, that's why I am still in Dublin I only have to do a little bit but not too much."
Bishop recognises the power of podcasts and is thankful for the continued improvement in social media and technology.
"When I started this, there was none of this stuff, there was no social media. You had to make sure shows were listed. You'd try to get on the radio. Now you just use social media which makes my life much easier. During a show you're always tweeting, or facebooking."
Clip via LaughterLoungeDublin.
One obvious but simply instruction for running a club is choosing the right acts and the comedy pool happens to be full of very talented fish at the moment.
"The number of talented comedians in Dublin is very high which makes my job of choosing easier but also harder because I let a lot of people down."
John Bishop, Alan Carr and Neil Delamere and Aidan's brother Des have all passed through the door of the comedy club of late but when asked about increasing or expanding on the success of the comedy club, Bishop wasn't so sure.
"I could put on an extra show on Friday, It's ten euro on the door and I can't raise the price anymore. If I raise the price, I make more money but it raises the hassle for me. Why would I want to raise more hassle? When all I want to do is relax, why ruin a good thing?
But, Bishop did have a solution for Gallagher's accusation that comedy business is slow in the summer.
"Tonight (Monday) will be great, comedy clouds I like to call this. It's going to be great. I love the rain."
You can listen to both interviews below.