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Feature
Benson Interrupted
An Interview with Doug Benson
by: DJ Intern Sam

Doug Benson is a touring comedian. His first Comedy Central Presents aired in early 2009, and he can currently be seen on VH1's Best Week Ever. He is the creator and star of the 2007 documentary Super High Me. He released his first solo CD "Professional Humoredian" in 2008 with AST Records and just recorded a CD for his long-running live comedy show "The Benson Interruption" in March 2009. He was interviewed by DJ Intern Sam host of the KUCI program Naked Comedy.

Naked Comedy: You've been doing "The Benson Interruption" for a few years now at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre both in LA and NY. How did this phenomenon of a show start?

Doug Benson: It started as part of the Comedy Death Ray show - that's now at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre every Tuesday - when it was at M Bar in Los Angeles. I've always enjoyed making jackass comments and coming up with tags for other comics' jokes from the back of the room, so I thought "why not do it into a microphone?"

NC: Has the "Interruption" part of the show ever backfired on you? Has anyone had trouble flowing with the interruption format?

DB: It gets awkward sometimes. The toughest is when I do it with someone who isn't a good friend, so the line-ups now consist mostly of pals. One exception was Dax Shepard. I didn't really know him the first time he did it, but it went swimmingly so I've had him on a bunch of times since. He's new to stand up but he's already got chops. (Chops? What am I, 70?)

NC: Right now people can listen to highlights of some of the earlier shows on AST Radio. Do you feel like the show has evolved at all over the years?

DB: Maybe a little, but I take pride in the fact that it will always be a sloppy mess of a show. And I'll be making a special announcement about the show's future in L.A. at the next performance on March 9!

NC: How did you guys decide to finally press a CD now, almost 3 years later?

DB: The AST Records guys and I always felt that the show might not translate to the audio medium, because so much of the humor comes from things happening in the room that you need to see to appreciate. But then we thought, F- it, let's make an album. So before the CD taping I told the acts to keep the listeners in mind. But there were still references to audience members and their outfits!

NC: You've had a number of your celebrity friends on the show. How did you decide who to invite for the CD?

DB: The four guys on the CD - Bil Dwyer, Sean Cullen, Graham Elwood and Jimmy Dore - are not only hilarious longtime friends who have done the show successfully many times, but they are also the ones who said Yes.

NC: Do you think any of the magic of the show will be lost in translation on the CD?

DB: I'm hoping that the glimpses of "The Interruption" in my movie "Super High Me" gave people who have never attended the show in person a feel for what it's like. But sure, some of the magic will be lost. I mean, who likes listening to magic?

NC: Well Doug, thanks for talking to us. I, and most of the comedy-nerd community, will be looking forward to The Benson Interruption coming out later this year.

DB: That's not a question! And thank YOU.

DJ Intern Sam is the host of Naked Comedy, which airs every Thursday morning from midnight to 2 am on KUCI.



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