Lake Tahoe comedy scene with Howie Nave: Larry ‘Bubbles’ Brown at The Loft; Bob Zany at The Improv
Special to Lake Tahoe Action
There are a handful of comedians out there who have the ability to make other comedians laugh out loud. They’re known as a comic’s comic and truth be told Larry “Bubbles” Brown falls into that category.
First off, he got his nickname “Bubbles” years ago he was sharing a hot tub with comedian Paula Poundstone. She commented that he was like bubbles and well, it sort of stuck and we’ve been calling him that ever since.
We in the business refer to Larry as “Mr. Excitement” because he’s anything but. I’ve jokingly introduced Larry on numerous occasions by saying “if anyone in the audience tonight feels insecure, unhappy and even depressed one look at your next act and you’ll find hope for yourself.”
The first time I worked with him was back in the late 1990s when we were booked together in Santa Rosa. I couldn’t believe how down on himself he was. I thought it was part of his act and he was just getting into character. Nope, “Bubs” is the same off stage as he is on.
Late night talk show host David Letterman enjoyed Larry’s unique style of humor so much he had him on his show twice. In fact, Larry holds the record for longest time between appearances (over 20 years) on Letterman. The first time was when Dave was still on NBC when Bubbles premiered in 1987 and the second time on July 25, 2008 after Dave moved to CBS.
Bubbles has also appeared on the big screen in movies like “The Kite Runner,” “Suckers” and “Birdy.” He’s also in the documentary “3 Still Standing,” which chronicles the career of three Bay Area comics: Johnny Steele, Will Durst and Larry.
And here he is at Howie’s House of Comedy at The Loft Tahoe on Sunday.
Howie’s House of Comedy at The Loft starts at 9 p.m. Sundays.
Bob Zany at The Improv
Another good bud, Bob Zany, headlines The Improv over at Harveys.
Bob’s a quasi local being on my morning radio show every Tuesday with “The Zany Report.” On the show Bob likes to roast me whenever he can, which is fine by me.
In addition to “The Zany Report” Bob calls in to countless radio stations around the country and also has a podcast: “The Bob Zany Show with Erin O’Conner.”
Even before all things social media Zany was expanding his vast horizons, performing in all 50 states and writing for other shows.
He also is a producer for his own self-produced comedy shows. Some of the names that have found their way onto his shows include such stalwarts as the late Garry Shandling, Yakov Smirnoff, Robert Wuhl, Kevin Nealon and actor Nia Peeples.
In addition to his comedy Bob is an accomplished actor, appearing on the big screen in such movies as “The Informant!,” “23 Minutes To Sunrise,” “Up Your Alley” and on Showtime playing the roast master of Brace Land in the comedy, “Gigolos.”
Bob also has appeared in several documentaries and even made one himself called “Close But No Cigar.” The documentary is an autobiographical journey chronicling Bob’s professional life, which includes numerous interviews from those Bob met over the years and some who have become major players in the comedy business.
It’s pretty sobering seeing one individual working a sweet gig as one of the top writers for SNL one moment and then seeing that same individual leaving a one-nighter he just performed at somewhere in the Midwest.
As Steve Martin once said, “Comedy isn’t pretty.”
Will there be a sequel? I’m not sure but a book is definitely in the works.
The Improv at Harveys takes place Wednesdays through Sundays at 9 p.m. Learn more at http://www.harveystahoe.com.