Saturday, November 14, 2009

I Like Friday The 13th

Friday November 13th, 2009 - Orlando, FL

Another Friday the 13th, Mr. Lucky’s favorite day. That’s when everyone else feels for a day what it’s like to be me 24/7/365. Actually I’ve come to embrace it because it’s a good promotional angle. Nobody else I know uses it so I want to make it my own cow to milk.

There is at least one Friday the 13th in every year and no more than three. This happened to be a ‘three’ year in 2009 but there’s only one in 2010, in August. I have nine months to germinate and execute a killer promotional idea to get some press and I’m starting now.

An easy thing to shoot for would be to release some new product(s) then, but what I am really shooting for is to do some kind of live event. A TV show would be great, and that’s why I took this week to come down and be on The Daily Buzz. We talked about me being Mr. Lucky and it fit the theme perfectly. How can I parlay it into something bigger in ‘10?

One thing I’d hoped to do was release my new CD today, but that didn’t happen. It’s no big deal, as the world wasn’t waiting for it or anything, but it would’ve been a promotable angle. I’m all about gimmicks and promotions and angles that will attract media attention.

Unfortunately, I’ve missed a lot more than I’ve hit. I’m just so far behind on everything that I can’t keep up. The CD should have been completed and out by now but it isn’t. I’m not going to make excuses, but I did have other things to deal with. Too bad. Everybody’s dealing with the distractions of life. I have to suck it up and find a way to make it happen.

The weather was gorgeous today so thankfully that’s not an issue. I took a long walk up the road from my hotel which has every chain restaurant known to humankind, and a few that aren’t. I worked up a full sweat and also brought some 3x5 cards to jot down ideas.

One idea I don’t know why I had in Florida, or today - but I did, was to come up with a CD and one man show about growing up in Milwaukee. I’ve had that idea before, but for whatever reason it really hit me hard today and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I used up all my 3x5 cards jotting down ideas in a restaurant and people were gawking as I did it.

I really didn’t care what those people thought, I just kept writing. The ideas were really flowing and it won’t be difficult to put this in motion. I’ll need to find a venue that’s not a comedy club, as that’s not what I’m shooting for with it. I want to make it a theatre show.

I know there’s a limited audience, but it’s got to be at least a couple million people who spent at least a few years living in Milwaukee between the 1960s and 2000. They’ll know what I’m talking about and it will bring back memories. I know, I do it when I’m there for shows now. I can drop local references I can’t use anywhere else because I grew up there.

If I really dug deeper, I could come up with a killer 80-90 minute theatre show that will be hilarious and personal to anyone who spent time in or near Milwaukee. Nobody else is going to get it but that’s fine. It’s not for them. This would be a specialized market only.

There’s a guy named James Gregory out of Atlanta who is very southern in his comedy. He’s an icon in the south because he captures what it’s like to be a Southerner. His shows sell out at theatres and many times he plays for consecutive weeks. He super serves those who support him and his fans are rabid. I want to do the same for people in Wisconsin.

I don’t think I have to do all that much work to get this going. I’ve already got material about being from Milwaukee, because I am. It’s part of me and like it or not, always will be. I may not always like it, but the best way to overcome that is to make it make money.

There are plusses and minuses to doing a locally based show, but for now it’s a definite plus. I live close enough to Milwaukee where I can drive up and do shows in the area if it should take off. I would like to do places like the Pabst Theatre or other venues that aren’t comedy clubs. In fact, those are the people who indirectly have motivated me to try this.

There’s a guy named John McGivern who has carved out a niche for himself in comedy in Milwaukee. I’ve never met the guy but I respect his marketing ability immensely. He’s always got some solo shows running in theatres and I see his name everywhere. Good for him. He was smart enough to do it without the clubs, and that alone earns my respect.

My friend Steve DeClark knows John and I’m working with Steve this coming Saturday in South Milwaukee at the Performing Arts Center there. Steve is another guy who knows how to promote shows so he’s another one I can work with to help this go. I’m excited to get this going, as I think it will be a fantastic way to serve a market not many are tapping.

John McGivern isn’t my competition, nobody is. It’s up to ME and me only to breathe a life into the concept, and I know I can. All I thought about all day was what I’d like this to become, and I totally see the vision. I’m sure John does a fine job, but there‘s room for all of us. My take on it will be my own and his will be his. This will be a temporary project.

I still have no idea why the idea hit me in Florida on Friday the 13th, but it did. I was out most of the day walking and thinking and writing and by the time I got back to my room I was ready for a nap but it was close to show time. I showered up and went to do the show.

This is a really nice facility and there was a full crowd tonight. Mitch English came out with his wife and it was very kind of them to do that. They’ve got kids and Mitch gets up extra early to do his TV show and it really was nice of them to come out to show support.

The other comics on the show are both very nice guys and excellent comics also. That’s SO rare, and I told them both that. The opener is my age and hasn’t been doing it long but has a nice stage presence and could easily be a feature. The feature is very funny also and I can easily see him closing shows. By the time I got on the audience was in a good mood.

That’s exactly how it’s supposed to work and I had a monster show on Friday the 13th. If I could have shows like this every night I’d be a big star, or at least a little less cranky. I’ll work for audiences like this anytime. This particular Friday the 13th wasn‘t unlucky at all.

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