If last year's Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival (presented by Funny or Die) was any indication of how this year's show will be on September 13th and 14th at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, then be sure to drain your bladder before hand. There's a good chance you could laugh hard enough to piss yourself. With a stellar line-up that includes performances by Louis C.K., Sarah Silverman, Hannibal Buress, Whitney Cummings, Chris Hardwick, Marc Maron, Demetri Martin and so many more, our "giddy with excitement" phase quickly turned into a "we need to know more" phase. With the show looming in the super near distance, we got in on a conference call with Hannibal and grabbed some questions from it in order to dish out some details about the show, find out what he loves about being on this tour, and also learned about how people react when they see him these days.
OC Weekly (Ali Lerman): Being that the line-up is so stacked, is there anyone that you are looking forward to seeing?
Hannibal Buress: Yeah! Pretty much everybody who's on it I've seen at the comedy clubs but it's always great to see how people adapt to performing in this setting. I'm mainly excited to be on the road together. I've done a lot of shows with most of the people but to have shows where we're all together for a big crowd is fun. I'm excited for it.
How does being in an arena change your comedy game compared to doing a show in a smaller venue?
Well there is less room for error when there's a big crowd. If I'm headlining on the road, most people will be familiar with my comedy. This is a big tour so it's an opportunity to gain new fans and I'm a little more animated so I'm trying to make it into a bigger thing. It's a lot of fun and it's a great feeling to perform in front of that many people on the weekends.
Being that you've done Bonnaroo, is there a big difference between doing straight up comedy shows as opposed to mixing in musicians with it?
They're such different things so to compare Oddball and Bonnaroo is really hard. I don't have a preference to which I like better because they're both really fun. You're still able to do large crowds and after you're done, you are able to go watch different shows. I really enjoy both of them.
Do you think your comedy changes the more successful you get?
The way I approach my comedy hasn't really changed. I talk about things that happen now just because someone might recognize me. Like, I had just got done taking a shit in Best Buy and the handle of the door was loose. When I turned the handle, the whole door just fell right off the hinge. So I was in the bathroom by myself washing my hands ready to get out of there and some dude popped in the bathroom like, "Yo what's up dude? Hannibal Buress!" So yeah, it doesn't change my approach it just includes situations that happen now when people know you. It's interesting when people recognize you because, well, people can be kind of rude. They don't care if you are out and about with your girl, just yelling shit out at you, or interrupting conversations so they can get a picture to post on their Facebook. It's given me a lot of insight on how people behave.
In your opinion, how do you know if you're an oddball?
Hmmm…I don't know. I wouldn't describe myself as an oddball. That's just the name of the tour and not to be taken too literally. [Laughs.] I wouldn't say oddball. I'd say more like a weirdo. Last year they had some midget swallowing swords and some bearded lady walking the grounds so that is sort of oddball-ish.
Get your tickets for the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival Sunday September 13th and 14th at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, 8808 Irvine Center Drive in Irvine, (949) 855-8095. For tickets and more info go to www.OddBallFest.com.