Entries in jimmy pardo (14)


Plop of The Week: The Nerdist #147 with Jimmy Pardo

Okay, so this week's favorite episode pick goes to podcast mash-up, of sorts. Yes, hosts being on other hosts' shows is a tried and true method for establishing a non-sucky entertainment standard in podcast land. I'm only human. Funny is funny. And this week's Jimmy Pardo guested episode of The Nerdist gets the extra nod thanks to Pardo adding honesty to the abundant humor. My pick of the Splitsider "This Week In Comedy Podcasts":

When The Nerdist guys gather 'round for a recorded hang out session, it usually goes in two directions: traditional interview reverence or plain ol' dicking around. Well, with always funny Jimmy Pardo in for a visit, we get a stellar laugh/learn combo episode. From the start, Pardo has a ton of fun at the expense of both Jonah Ray and Matt Mira. Ray's skill at finding the moment for an inappropriate/dumb joke is a perfect fit alongside Pardo's similar brand of silliness. I'm officially advocating for a Ray visit to Never Not Funny. Chris Hardwick keeps the show moving along, even venturing into heartfelt territory where the foursome discusses the link between comedy and tragedy. Full of charm and vigor, Pardo's honesty about his past, his show and the people in his life are a delight. Hardwick also finds time to fanboy his favorite Pardo moments, including an awkward Pardo/Lisa Loeb memory. Throughout, Pardo offers up plenty of passionate podcast insight. And, then there's a healthy dose of FLARB. It doesn't all have to make sense. That's half the fun.


Here's the complete list of the Splitsider episode picks, including the inclusion of Earwolf's brilliantly cracked-out Gelmania:

RISK! #308 "The Family"
Superego #3:10
Gelmania #2 - Megan Mullally, Adam Scott, Natasha Leggero, Jackie Clarke, Gil Ozeri
The Nerdist #147 - Jimmy Pardo
Here's The Thing #4 - Chris Rock

More comedy podcast recognition via the always handy honorable mentions: Comedy Bang! Bang! #134 (Kevin Nealon, Ben Schwatz, Amy Phillps), Dead Authors #4 "Benjamin Franklin" (Scott Aukerman), Illusionoid 9th Transmission "Invastion of The Cybernetic Cyberfreaks, Making It With Riki Lindhome #21 (Doug Benson) and WTF with Marc Maron #233 (Anthony Bourdain).


Pardcast-a-thon: Never Not Funny Pulls Another All-nighter

6:12 am. November 26th, 2011. Never Not Funny. Jimmy Pardo. The Third Annual Pardcast-a-Thon has officially wrapped.  After 12 hours of world class comedian, singer, and celebrity-induced laughter and fun, over $42,000 was raised for Smile Train. This organization aims to provide children born with a cleft the same opportunities in life as a child born without. The surgery costs $250, so roughly 168 children will be able to have the surgery thanks to this year’s event. The three Pardcast-a-thons have raised over $97,000 so far.

Whether you stayed up to watch all 12 hours, caught a few guests or missed the Pardcast-a-thon altogether, you’re in luck. Here are my SportsCenter-style Top 10 highlights of the night.

The hosts with Amy Poehler *Photo by Liezl Estipona10.  Hosts Jimmy Pardo, Matt Belknap and Pat Francis all welcome the ACME Comedy Theater live studio audience and prepare them for half day of fun. They mention that $8,004.69 has already been donated, which is over half the amount donated from the entire Pardcast-a-thon in 2009.  Off to a great start!  69 cents remains a theme throughout the night, tormenting Pardo the entire time.

9.  The longtime comedian Wayne Federman confesses to the audience about his addiction to fast food (especially Taco Bell) and discusses the most frightening show on television, Snapped!  Women Who Kill.

8. Conan writer Todd Levin supplies some excellent conversation starters, brought to them by the Omaha Steak People.

7. Rich Sommer gives all Mad Men fans some insight when he clarifies that the show’s time period will stay in the 60’s, despite the show creator and runner Matthew Weiner’s quote about the series ending in 2011.

Jesse Thorn *Photo by Liezl Estipona6.  Jesse Thorn, American public radio show host/creator and Maximum Fun founder, dressed in a stylish suit, brings the guys (and the studio audience) dozens of satsumas, seedless and “easy to peel” Japanese citrus fruits.  Before Thorn leaves, however, he makes sure to ask the audience for his Trader Joes reusable grocery bags back.

5. Eli Braden, a Los Angeles writer/musician regularly heard on Howard Stern, sings songs about white people problems. Plus, Francis lauds Braden for his outstanding Twitter feed.

4. Radio personality Adam Carolla drops in as a surprise guest and reminisces about building the bench that resides in the current ACME Theatre. He shows the bench to the audiences and acts disgusted with the chewing gum littering his work of art.

3. The ever-charming singer-songwriter Lisa Loeb discusses her children’s book and pleases everyone with “Dirty Work” and her chart-topping song “Stay (I Miss You)”.

2.  Amy Poehler and Pardo discuss their peculiar laughs, and Pardo challenges Poehler to make his explosive laugh erupt. Of course, the hilarious Poehler wins out, making Pardo laugh, much to the audience’s delight.

1.  Pardcast-a-thon favorite Jon Hamm makes his grand entrance and appears a bit sillier than his Don Draper character. The guys talk about the Dukes of Hazzard, and his hometown St. Louis Cardinals. As tradition would have it, Hamm stumbles back on for more cameos throughout the next couple of hours.

Other guests included Joe Lo Truglio, John Ross Bowie, Rachel Quaintence, Walter and Danielle Koenig, Andy Richter, Janet Varney, Paul Gilmartin, Rebecca Corey, Bil Dwyer, Graham Elwood, Dave Holmes and Greg Behrendt. 

Starting December 15th, downloadable audio and video versions of the 12-hour webcast will be available on http://pardcast.comProceeds from sales will be donated to Smile Train.

Rick Demint will also be releasing a book of photos from the benefit available soon. Yes, sales will benefit Smile Train.

Thanks to Jimmy, Matt, and Pat for hosting this incredible event and for making a difference for Smile Train! Might as well start storing sleep for next year’s all-nighter.


Pardcast-a-thon: Never Not Funny Staying Up Late This Friday

Pardcast-a-thon 2010 *Photo by Liezl EstiponaThis Friday, November 25th at 6:00 pm PST is the 3rd annual Pardcast-a-thon (streaming live at www.pardcast.com)!  It’s a 12-hour comedy podcast marathon that supports Smile Train, an international charity that provides cleft palate surgery to children in need. 

Presented by Jimmy Pardo’s award-winning Never Not Funny, the charity event will feature over 20 of the funniest comedians alive including Andy Richter, Sarah Silverman and other surprise guests. Pardo will be joined by his producer and regular co-host Matt Belknap (aspecialthing.com, AST Records) and old friend of the show, comedian Pat Francis.

Choosing Smile Train for the now-three-years running Pardcast-a-thon was a simple choice for Pardo. After determining if he could donate $250, a child's life would be changed. The fundraiser has raised over $55,000 for Smile Train so far.

I traded some Q&A’s with the creators of Pardcast-a-thon themselves, Jimmy Pardo and Matt Belknap.

What’s different about the plans for this year’s show compared to past shows?

JIMMY PARDO: We bumped up from nine to twelve hours for last year's event, so nothing really all that different for this year. It will be twelve hours of Matt Belknap, Pat Francis and me talking with a different guest every half hour.

What are your tips for the full 12-hour listening experience for the die-hards, either for the in-theater or the at-home audience?

JP:  Stay hydrated, drink a lot of Monster Energy Drink (or your energy boosting drink of choice) and to quote White Sox broadcaster Ken Harrelson: "Sit back, relax and strap it down."

MATT BELKNAP:  I cannot stress enough the importance of comfortable pants. I've been through many all-night comedy shows, and I couldn't have done it without my favorite pair of Gap cargo pants (they've since been retired, but they were light, baggy and soft -- I'm talking pajama soft -- with generous pocket-space for snacks). Last year I made the mistake of wearing a new pair of raw denim jeans to the Pardcast-a-thon; they almost killed me. So whether you're in the audience or watching at home, please consider a drawstring linen pant, or perhaps some well-worn chinos. Sweatpants?  As Jimmy would say, we're not animals.

What is your fundraising goal this year?

JP: We raised over $26,000 last year, which more than doubled what we raised in 2009. I was blown away with how much we raised by the end of the event last year... BUT, while the goal for telethons is to always make more that the previous year, we are being a little realistic and shotting for $27,000 and hoping we get there.

How do you prep yourself to stay awake and host a talk show for 12-hours until 6 in the morning?

MB:  It's not easy with a small child in the house, but staying up late and sleeping in late for a few days leading up to the show helps adjust the ol' body clock a bit. I will also try to "take it easy" -- or "lay low," if you will -- on Thursday and Friday, so as to conserve energy. Then, two minutes before showtime, I will ask our intern Dan Katz to punch me in the stomach forty times. That oughta do the trick

JP:  Every Friday for the past month I have been doing mock marathons in my house. I start talking to myself at 6pm and don't stop until 6am. It's going very well... I'm ready!

Check-out Pardo on Conan talking temper, clothing choices and the Pardcast-a-thon.



Plop of The Week: The Bugle

Our favorite comedy show/episode submitted to this week's Splitsider Week In Comedy Podcasts is The Bugle's rapid-fire Qaddafi riffing session offered up by comedians John Oliver and Andy Zaltman. The recap:

Man, every week, The Bugle could easily be the podcast pick. It’s that good. That consistent. The Bugle receives bonus points for its stick-it-to-the-man credentials. Basically hosts John Oliver (Daily Show hero supreme) and Andy Zaltman take turns being bad ass. The latest edition of Oliver and Zaltman political satire features a spirited “F*ck-You-Logizing” of Qaddafi, the recently deceased and deposed Libyan leader. Zaltman wonders when the “unconfirmed reports” will cease. There’s excitement for Elton John’s newest Qaddafi rendition of “Candle In The Wind.” Oliver recaps all of Qaddafi’s Bond villain traits. The guys question whether the “International Society of Fugitives” will downgrade Qaddafi’s final sewage pipe hideout. Oliver proposes the glory of the inevitable Qaddafi final-hideout-turned-tourist-attraction, complete with sewage pipe themed trinkets for kids. Zaltman also gleefully reads off taunting RIP tweets from other despots. Coming off his recent stand-up appearance in Orlando, Oliver also intros the show with an enthused takedown of the kids’ paradise. This includes Oliver’s joy/sadness at witnessing zombie smoking breaks at the Halloweened-out Universal Studios. The guys also squeeze in a quick UK-sports news round-up (AKA dumping on the French). Another week, another inspiring rapid-fire session of Oliver and Zaltman’s savage and breezy comedy.


The full list of shows making the Spitsider cut:

Making It with Riki Lindhome #15 - Ben Schwartz
The Nerdist #134 - John Hodgman
Who Charted? #47 - Jimmy Pardo
The Bugle #169 “Captain Crazy Corks It”
Mike and Tom Eat Snacks #39 "Banana Cream Pie"

You can check-out the full Splitsider post here, complete with everyone's recaps/reviews.

Podkatz Picks Up Steam

Podkatz, the weekly chat show from hosts Dan Katz and Carlos Hererra, is gaining guest momentum of late. Recent guest highlights include Jimmy Pardo, Graham Elwood and Matt Belknap (A Special Thing, Never Not Funny). Deep cuts from this year also feature two quality episodes with young upstart comedian, Little Esther. While their usual run of comedian and non-comedian guests help get things going, Katz and Hererra's laid-back banter remains the core of the show.

Currently in it's fourth season, Podkatz continues to smooth over its rough edges, creating a show that mixes the low key conversation among friends with the fun and obnoxiousness of those friends' strong personalities. Bonus points for their continued development of the conversational riff. Much like their unofficial podcast uncle Never Not Funny - Dan Katz moonlights as Never Not Funny's hapless and semi-helpful on-air intern - Podkatz's best moments our when the hosts and guests comically latch on to a topic. New episodes plop on Mondays, with the duration hanging out near 60-minutes per episode.

Click here for the latest episode.


The Earwolf Challenge Recap - Week 2: Theme Music & Intros

The gap between what you think you’re creating and what you’re actually creating never ceases to amaze. You may think you have a perfect understanding of what you’re trying to do, backed by the advice of someone who seems to know what they’re talking about, but somehow, in the course of realizing your vision, things don’t go quite as planned. It only takes a slight creative misstep to stray from yesterday’s good idea to the stickiness of today’s mess.

These close calls kept coming to mind, time and again, while listening to the first two episodes of Week 2 of The Earwolf Challenge. For the first proper challenge of the competition, host and head judge Matt Besser tasks the contestants with crafting the perfect theme song and intro for their respective shows.

Episode 2.1

Monday’s episode is full of brief but interesting conversations on the nature of theme songs and show introductions, specifically regarding the purpose they serve. Besser’s advice gets more and more focused as the episode progresses, until by the end he has a pretty succinct bullet-point list of what a good intro should accomplish.

  • Bring up the energy.
  • Let the listener know what the show’s about.
  • Get the audience on board right away.
  • Remembering even casual decisions about what elements to include will be interpreted by the audience as significant, deliberate choices.
  • Choose music that clearly says something about the hosts, the episode, or the show.
  • Get in and get out.

Listening to the episode, I can almost see the contestants nodding along in enthusiastic agreement as Besser helps them develop a rough map of where they’re going. Some have previously established theme music and intro sequences. Some don’t. But every conversation ends on a positive note. Besser is admirably quick to point out he and the judges aren’t asking them to fit into a mold, but to simply take in what’s been discussed and make the best intro sequences they can. And this certainly seems to be happening. From Elizabeth Laime’s plan to only make a few tweaks to Totally Laime’s existing intro to Brett Hamil’s amazement that Ham Radio has “made it nine episodes in without ever having to address this,” shows the contestant-host back-and-forth flowing in a positive direction.

Episode 2.2

Jason SklarJimmy PardoAll of which makes Tuesday’s episode that much more perplexing.

For Tuesday and Wednesday’s Besser is joined by Jimmy Pardo -- or Pardeaux, if you prefer -- and Jason Sklar, two well-known and successful podcasters who should be familiar to just about any fan of comedy podcasts. (Where is Randy Sklar in all this? I like to imagine him scratching forlornly at the studio door.) Pardo’s Never Not Funny was among the first wave of podcasts, and relatively few in the podcasting scene can match his experience. Conversely, the Sklars are only now just hitting the 1-year mark on their weekly Sklarbro Country. There’s an obvious care and attention to detail put into every episode that belies their still brief podcast run.

Choosing Pardo and Sklar as the first guest judges is setting the bar pretty high. And it makes for a pretty brutal judging episode. While Pardo and Jason readily appreciate the quality of the more complicated entries, most notably those from Left Hand Radio, The Fort and the aforementioned Ham Radio, they, to put it bluntly, don’t actually like most of them. And nobody is better at letting you know he doesn’t like something than Pardo. Sklar brings up a great point not mentioned in Episode 2.1: your listeners will have to live with your intro every single episode. “Shorter, tighter is better,” Sklar says. Basically sums up the entire week’s challenge.

Personally, I agreed with just about everything the judges offered up. After my potentially prudish poo-pooing of “questionable language” in last week’s episodes, I felt a little vindicated when Pardo repeatedly voiced the very same opinion. From Ham Radio’s racism-skirting joke about “thick black ladies” with “ghetto nails” to Television Zombies’ off-putting F-bomb. Pardo didn’t like it. My problem isn’t a delicate sensibility. It’s these attempts at edgy humor are going for the easy laugh. It’s the same reason (future guest judge, I presume) Paul F. Tompkins says he tends to shy away from profanity in his own work. He wants to know the audience is laughing at his material, not at the presence of a bad word.

The clear frontrunners after Tuesday’s episode are Totally Laime, The Bob and Dan Cast and The Little Dum Dum Club. What do these intros all have in common? They’re all short, punchy and give you a good feel for the show.

Episode 2.3

Everyone else gets pretty low marks from the judges. On Wednesday it's The Fort, Left Hand Radio and Beginnings ending up on the bottom. The judges can't always agree on what puts them on the bottom. Based on the week’s challenge, they're all solid choices. I'm disappointed to see one of my predicted front-runners, Left Hand Radio, wind up in the bottom three. Though, I can't argue with the judges’ reasons.


In the end, Beginnings meets its Earwolf Challenge demise. The judges' overall rationale, one that will no doubt come up time and again in the weeks to come: the show just isn't ready for prime time. If Earwolf's going to commit to producing the winning podcast for the next year, they're not going to want to take any chances. Especially when there are still strong contenders in the field. Beginnings hosts’ decision to broaden the scope of the show’s theme and their contention they're “nobodies” (a pretty major slip-up, if you ask me) reveals these podcasters are still feeling things out. Really, this challenge was never about music and an intro. It was about seeing how well the contestants know their own shows and how adept they are at communicating that understanding to the audience.

Speaking of feeling things out, I enjoyed hearing Besser’s decision-making process as he puzzled through how he'd announce the eliminated contestant. Ironically, nearly all of the music cues for the various segments in these episodes went on way too long.

Each week, in memoriam of the eliminated podcast, I'm going to listen to one of their episodes. This week it's you, Beginnings. We hardly knew ye.


Splitsider Top 5 Comedy Podcasts: July 21


Again, large personalities win the day in Jesse Fox and Joe Berkowitz's Splitsider Top 5 Comedy Podcast list this week. Earwolf's reality achieves its first bit of acclaim, along with The Long Shot and You Had To Be There (two shows with some of the best co-host chemistry) also making welcomed appearances on the list. The Top 5 include:

Earwolf Challenge Week 2 - featuring Jimmy Pardo, Jason Sklar
The Long Shot #320 - featuring Jack McBrayer
Who Charted? #33 - featuring Marc Maron
WTF with Marc Maron #193 - featuring Richard Lewis
You Had to Be There #25 - featuring Kurt Braunohler, Todd Barry, Mike Daughty

The other Splitsider favorite episodes for the week include Totally Laime #76 (featuring Paul F. Tompkins), The Gentlemen’s Club #103 (featuring Paul Rust) and Pop My Culture #48 (featuring William Zabka).

Check-out the full Splitsider recaps here.


Jimmy Pardo Talks Conan & Podcasting With The Comic's Comic

Sean McCarthy (The Comic's Comic) posted a brief but informative interview with Jimmy Pardo. The interview coincided with the Never Not Funny team's visit to New York City for it's live podcast show. Jimmy Pardo gives some quick thoughts on his current increased on-air role for TBS's Conan and the state of podcasting for himself and newcomers. Check-out the full interview here.

McCarthy includes this great clip of Pardo and Dana Carvey playing around in between segments behind the scenes during a recent taping of Conan. It's part of the new online semi-regular series, The Pardo Patrol. More Pardo in our lives is always a good thing.


The AV Club: Podmass May 19-25

Smarty-pants collective, The A.V. Club, released another strong Podmass recap. The crew recapped a strong selection of shows this week. A ton of variety and irreverence on the podcast airwaves, of late. Perhaps, this is the common tonal thread and I'm just now noticing it. Podmass highlights include:

A.V. Club's introduction to Natasha Leggero and Duncan Trussell's irregularly released Lavender Hour, featuring the always "on" Thomas Lennon.

Andy Richter and Paul F. Tompkins visiting with Scott Aukerman for a raucous episode of Comedy Bang! Bang!

Scott Aukerman abandoning his hosting duties to mess with Jimmy Pardo's head on the Season 8 finale of Never Not Funny.

Nerd worlds colliding when Patton Oswalt guests on The Nerdist, full of informative pop culture tangents and revelations on Oswalt's career.

A mostly heavy Gary Shandling and Marc Maron conversation on comedy on WTF With Marc Maron.

Check-out the full A.V. Club Podmass post here - lots of quality thoughts on the week's comedy podcasts plus some non-comedy shows for those of you with cold hearts.



Jimmy Pardo & Never Not Funny Get Some Press & Hit The Road

Photo by Mandee Johnson www.mandeejohnson.comJimmy Pardo and his Never Not Funny gang had a nice write-up in the Los Angeles Times from Deborah Vankin. The article is a great overview of Pardo's recent success working for Conan and the popularity of his long running podcast.

Never Not Funny recently announced another live show - this time in Denver at The Gothic Theater on Saturday, July 16th. Pardo is also bringing the podcast live show to New York City on June 18th at The Blender Theater at Grammercy. Anything Pardo does with a live audience is always a must-see experience. Always unique and never duplicated. If you're in those areas, you have guaranteed entertainment coming your way.

Be sure to subscribe for the upcoming 9th Season of Never Not Funny. The show keeps getting better. Now is as good as time as any to jump in.