I’ve been fortunate enough to see many comedians perform live. Sometimes in stadiums, sometimes in theaters and sometimes in clubs. Stand-up comedy is an art form that works much better in person than on Netflix. The energy is different, the comedian is usually more comfortable when they’re not being filmed, and there’s an interactive feeling when you’re 15 feet away from the performer. Some comics are remarkable live performers. If you’re planning on going to a show this year, here are the comedians you have to see.
- Marc Maron
Marc is a man that wears many hats: interviewer, podcast host, actor, writer, and of course stand-up comedian. He has excelled at many of his endeavors and stand-up is no exception. He remains as witty and as insightful as ever and is definitely worth checking out if the opportunity should arise.
- Kevin Barnett
Kevin is a comic who is funny regardless of if he’s performing in front of 20 people or 3000 people. As a performer, Kevin is a tough comedian to beat. His jokes are consistently funny and work no matter what type of crowd he’s in front of.
- Curtis Cook
Cook is one of those comedians who simply has fantastic jokes. He is always topical and always hilarious when on stage and quite frankly; his presence in the comedy community is getting harder to ignore despite how hard everyone is trying.
- Jim Norton
If you’re a groaner, then maybe you should avoid Jim. His humor is dark, intelligent, and brutal. You’re guaranteed to never get the same show twice as his focus on crowd work is always present and no one in the audience gets a free pass. Norton’s shows are always an awesome time and what’s better than seeing a comic with an apparent multiple personality disorder?
- Tom Segura
Tom’s stand-up seems to work on every medium that allows comedy to go into ears. Netflix, drunken YouTube surfing, theaters, and comedy clubs. Tom is never not funny. His slow but self-aware style is fantastic and I cannot recommend him enough.
- Nikki Glaser
Nikki Glaser is a tremendous comedian. Every time I see her she’s improved. I almost made a wine comparison just there. I almost compared comedy to wine in an article about sociopaths who tell jokes. “Nikki Glaser’s comedy ages like fine wine” Yuck. Go see her. She is well worth the money and the 2 drink minimum and whatever other fees the club owner at the chuckle place in Bismarck decides to tack on to your final check.
- Mark Normand
Mark is making huge waves in the comedy community. Stand-up spots on Conan and opening for Amy Schumer, who has no problem filling up and entire stadium, are just a couple of the massive things going on for Mark. See him live now because this kid is inevitable.
- Rich Vos
Can you believe Rich did not make the list of top 1000 comedians? Of course you can this is probably your first time hearing of him. Regardless, he’s number 3 on this list for a reason. He’s a phenomenal comedian to see live. No one does crowd work like Rich Vos. Just ask Rich Vos. Or don’t. He’ll tell you without you asking I promise.
- Jen Kirkman
Jen Kirkman is hilarious but she’s even better live. She has fantastic observations and has the ability to be funny to a very diverse crowd. She’s simply a great comic and she’s always touring so you have a good chance of seeing her this year.
- Dave Attell
I’ve seen a lot of funny people perform stand up, but there’s one comedian who’s upsettingly good at what he does. Dave Attell. Dave covers a multitude of topics in a short period of time and has hilarious insight on each of them. You could see Dave six times this year and you would probably see a different show every time. His show varies drastically with where he is and what the crowd is like. Attell is like the Michael Jordan of comedy. Every time I see him, I know I’m getting my money’s worth. If you’re at all interested in stand-up comedy, this is definitely a comic you have to see.