Greg Giraldo...Beyond the Roasts
You've probably heard some of his quirky one-liners, but I bet you don't know his name. He is the visual cross-breed between Ricky Martin and Geraldo Rivera, combined with the quick wit and potty mouth of George Carlin. For too long, he has been known to many only as "that Roast guy", but that is all about to change.
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There are many words that could be used to describe Greg Giraldo, but bashful is not one of them. He is inherently funny with an ironic and self-deprecating charm that has helped to define him as one of America's best, even if not best-known, comedians.
Giraldo's edgy, but oh so accurate quips have come to be the highlight of the Comedy Central "Roast on..." series. His crudely provocative sense of humor has earned him the honor of roasting such celebrities as Pamela Anderson, William Shatner, Flavor Flav, and most recently Bob Saget, among the many.
A former lawyer and Harvard Law School graduate, Giraldo always aspired to be a comedian. He entered the world of stand-up after a year of working in a law office, and aside from the courtroom-like setting of "Lewis Black's The Root of All Evil," he hasn't looked back since.
September 25th - 27th, Giraldo will be performing at Mark Ridley's Comedy Castle in Royal Oak, Michigan. If you're wondering what to expect, Giraldo describes his show as, "Non-stop hilarity. Butt-gusting, rolling in the aisles, sometimes people spit up; they're laughing so hard they actually vomit. The endorphin rush is so overwhelming that people can expect to feel like they've been smoking crystal meth for nineteen hours straight with none of the negative side effects."
Comedy Central Roast on Bob Saget
Aside from the obvious sales pitch, Giraldo is actually quite modest, "I like to think of myself as Jesus." he admits, "I, like Jesus, bring a message of hope and renewal and redemption."
Giraldo has performed at the Comedy Castle a few times before and says that he loves the market, to which he credits "Good ol' mid-western dwarf friendliness." But on a more serious note, Giraldo says that he plans to build the Detroit mayoral situation into his Comedy Castle act, joking, "It sounds like things are pretty under control there in your fair city."
Aside from the comedy tour and his recurring guest appearances on "Lewis Black's The Root of All Evil," you can also find Giraldo on the Independent Film Channel, where he plays a record executive on a show called "Z-Rock." He is also working on material for another hour long stand-up special, "You know a little of that and then probably just work on my Macramé," he jokes, "I'm making a really awesome potholder."
Despite his busy tour schedule and success with the Comedy Central Roasts, the seemingly ubiquitous Giraldo says that he has never really pursued fame. He admits that some "unlucky moments" and "personal demons" have caused him to lose focus in the past, but hopes to expand his body of work in the next couple of years.
"Every day that I'm still working, every day that I'm not, you know, getting a regular job; every day that people seem to enjoy what I'm doing, feels like it's working out on some level," he says thoughtfully, "I'm only saying that because I just took a whole shitload of Valium."
- The Oakland Press
This article was first published in the September 21st edition of The Oakland Press.