We had a chance to speak to current HotStar comedian Bill Burr for a few minutes.
Below is our official interview because Pollstar likes to talk about business relationships and touring. That doesn’t mean we didn’t get a chance to talk to him about Breaking Bad, motorcycle school or juicing (recent topics of his podcast) but here’s the on-the-record stuff:
Your agent is Michael Berkowitz and manager is Dave Becky. Do you have any stories about meeting either of them?
I met both of them just by doing standup. They were both out in the clubs looking for talent. Just a very standard way of meeting them. You know, back in the day. In about 2002 I started working with Mike Berkowitz and I started working with Dave Becky in 2006.
Me and Mike were young guys, and I was young in the business when we met. He’s been booking for basically my whole career. He booked me back when I was doing “B” and “C” rooms and we just worked our way up. Him doing his work and then me doing my work onstage – the ally-oop thing. And I started working with Dave at 3 Arts in 2006.
I’ve known Dave a long time but the opportunity to work together just didn’t present itself until then.
Were you self-managed up until then?
Nah, nah. I had other managers. It was just the growing pains of trying to figure out what you want to do and growing as a person and learning how to have business relationships. It’s kind of like dating, you know what I mean? After a while you learn what you’re looking for in the relationship, you grow up a little bit, and you’re able to sustain it.
So you’re going to Europe and we’ve heard you’ve grown from capacities of 300 to 3,000. What exactly are we talking about here?
Well, it depends on where I’m at. I always try to expand. I’ve done London before, I’ve done Oslo, Helsinki, Stockholm and Copenhagen once before, but never did standup in Amsterdam or Reykjavik. So we’ll see what happens in the new markets but England is selling real well and I know they’ve added a couple shows in London, added a couple shows in Helsinki.
But I’m still new over there. But it’s fun. I just want to make a living. Basically I just want to be able to Europe for free (laughs). That’s basically it. Go over there, make some money and then fly to Italy and blow it all on pasta. Go to France or something. I just like the road; I like traveling. I just like new experiences.
What do you think your next 12 months will be like? Do you expect to just keep on keeping on, or do you expect some rather large events to arrive?
Keep on keepin’ on. That’s what I’ve been saying. I’m just going to make another special next year, then work on writing the new hour. This is what I do. And as far as acting – I act when they let me. But I’m ready and willing but they have to ask me. You don’t have as much control as an actor. I can decide when I want to work and ask Mike to book me in different states. We can get that done any time, but with acting it’s a whole other ballgame. You have to wait till they get the project, you have to look like the character – that kind of stuff.
And that’s the next 12 months!
Bill Burr’s upcoming gigs:
Nov. 15 – Deadwood, S.D., Deadwood Mountain Grand Hotel & Casino
Nov. 16 – Tulsa, Okla., Brady Theater
Nov. 17 – Wichita, Kan., Orpheum Theatre
Nov. 23 – New Haven, Conn., So. Connecticut St. Univ.
Dec. 4 – Glasgow, United Kingdom, O2 Academy Glasgow
Dec. 5 – Amsterdam, Netherlands, De Meervaart
Dec. 7 – London, United Kingdom, The Forum
Dec. 8 – London, United Kingdom, The Forum
Dec. 9 – Dublin, Ireland, Vicar Street
Dec. 10 – Helsinki, Finland, Savoy Theatre
Dec. 11 – Copenhagen, Denmark, Bremen
Dec. 12 – Oslo, Norway, Folketeateret
Dec. 13 – Stockholm, Sweden, Cirkus
Dec. 15 – Reykjavik, Iceland, Harpa Reykjavík Concert Hall and Conference Centre
Dec. 31 – Los Angeles, Calif., The Wiltern
Jan. 24 – Charlottesville, Va., Paramount Theater
Jan., 25 – Richmond, Va., Carpenter Theatre
Jan. 26 – Newark, N.J., Prudential Hall
Please visit BillBurr.com for more information.