Joey Zimmerman Branches Out

June 8, 2018

Interview by

Valerie Lopez

Article by

Richard Goodwin

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This week we wel­come back into the fold pre­vi­ous CW guest, Joey Zim­mer­man, and since Valerie Lopez last spoke with him in 2016, he’s been any­thing but idle. 

Zimmerman’s lived in Austin going on 4 years, and I don’t know if the city is con­tribut­ing its laid-back style to his already even-keeled out­look on life, or vice ver­sa. Either way, his per­sona shines through, in his rep­u­ta­tion in the com­e­dy scene, and in his new EP Chill­in’ With My Friends (iTunes, Spo­ti­fy, Google Play). The self-described all weed joke EP”, avail­able on iTunes and Spo­ti­fy, dropped this year (on April 20th of course), and is a show­case of some of his favorite ever-green (pun intend­ed, nat­u­ral­ly) mate­r­i­al. There’s even an extend­ed sto­ry at the end, with some life lessons about less than opti­mal con­di­tions for drop­ping acid. 

In addi­tion to the new EP, Zim­mer­man con­tin­ues to host unique month­ly shows at Gen­uine Joe’s Cof­fee House, a venue that has been won­der­ful­ly sup­port­ive of the com­e­dy com­mu­ni­ty (and has some tasty sus­te­nance to boot.)

Standup is the nucle­us of every­thing, but I feel there’s so many things that can branch off from that idea“Joey Zim­mer­man

The Lis­ten­ing Room (2nd Sat­ur­day of every month) is a com­bi­na­tion sto­ry­telling and live pod­cast show, pub­lished by Body Tape Intl. It’s a con­cept that not every­one comes to eas­i­ly; find­ing a 10 – 15 minute sto­ry to tell, with very few rules, can be very daunt­ing com­pared to the com­pact, rapid fire sets you often see in a stand-up show. The Lis­ten­ing Room gives the stage to peo­ple from all walks of life (not just come­di­ans) that have a com­pelling sto­ry to tell. Zimmerman’s goal is to give some­one a plat­form to share some­thing that has mean­ing for them, no mat­ter if the audi­ences’ and lis­ten­ers’ tears are from laugh­ter or shared empa­thy. Standup is the nucle­us of every­thing, but I feel there’s so many things that can branch off from that idea”, Zim­mer­man says. 

On the 4th Sat­ur­day of every month is Glow Show, a lights-out expe­ri­ence where the audi­ence is armed with glow sticks to bran­dish in the dark­ness to show (and share) their enjoy­ment of the stand-up per­for­mance. It’s not a con­cept most peo­ple would think of apply­ing to com­e­dy, but it works well, and had only a lit­tle bit to do with the fact that Zim­mer­man want­ed a legit rea­son to play with glow sticks. Allegedly.

Keep branch­ing out – do the Don­ald Glover – make music, be fun­ny, be both ends of the spec­trum if you can. Who knows which one of them will take off.“Joey Zim­mer­man

Zim­mer­man has more ideas on the back burn­er or bub­bling up; speak­ing of bub­bling, be sure to check out the audio-visu­al game you can play at home”: Is It a Bong or a Lamp?. He’s always on the look­out for ways to cre­ate a con­nec­tion and par­tic­i­pa­tion with peo­ple, whether it’s cen­tered on stand-up or in the ever-expand­ing orbit of things he’ll try at least once” to see how well they’ll work. He tells us, Peo­ple should not just stick to one thing…Keep branch­ing out – do the Don­ald Glover – make music, be fun­ny, be both ends of the spec­trum if you can. Who knows which one of them will take off.”

When we closed our pre­vi­ous talk with Joey Zim­mer­man, his one word for the future” was uncer­tain. For some, that could speak to a sense of unpre­dictabil­i­ty and stress, but for Zim­mer­man, it’s per­fect­ly rep­re­sen­ta­tive of his rela­tion­ship to the world: full of oppor­tu­ni­ties, and you nev­er know what comes next, but, as he says, There’s always a spot for you some­where”. We agree, and look for­ward to him explor­ing each and every one of them.

With shows every month, you have plen­ty of chances to get out and see Zimmerman:

GLOW SHOW
Glow Show Every 4th Sat­ur­day, 8pm Gen­uine Joe’s Cof­fee House @glowshowcomedy
The Listening Room
The Lis­ten­ing Room Every 2nd Sat­ur­day, 8pm Gen­uine Joe’s Cof­fee House @ListeningRoomxx
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