EP102 – Doug Stanhope – How to avoid all industry and build your own fan base.

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EP102 – Doug Stanhope – How to avoid all industry and build your own fan base.


Total run time: 1 hour 09 mins 54 secs.

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About this episode…

Doug Stanhope (@DougStanhope) is a comedian, writer and podcaster with nearly 30 years of performing under his belt. After cutting his teeth on the open mic circuit, Doug moved into MCing a “crappy” hotel gig which gave him the taste of being a “comedian with a point of view”. Since then he’s spent his time building his cult-like following and touring with his brash, honest, loud and often controversial style of comedy.

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Comedy career…

  • How long did it take you to go pro? [0 mins 0 secs]
    • On the circuit there’s a lot of talk about when you can call yourself a pro comedian. You wrote that you thought of yourself as a pro after you received something like $10 from a gig. Would you say any financial remuneration legitimises you? [0 mins 0 secs]
    • Can you describe how you moved from being an open mic comic to becoming a professional and getting paid to be a comedian
    • Also, would you encourage younger acts to do shit, but we’ll paid, work – like you did with ‘Girls Gone Wild’ – to give you the freedom to pursue projects with “artistic credibility”?
  • Do you think you’re a good comedian? If you don’t, do you just agree with reviewers who might not like you? [3 mins]
    • How do you cope with rejection / bad reviews?
  • How many comedians were around when you started? [4 mins]
  • Do you feel more responsibility to entertain audiences in a different way now that people come to you instead of clubs. [6 mins 30 secs]
  • Do you ever perform in rooms where people don’t know you to fully test your material? [8 mins 30 secs]
  • His favourite social media channels and why. [11 mins]
  • How do you deal with with hate on social media? [13 mins]
  • How do you view your fans? [14 mins]
  • What drives a comedian who has a diehard audience that has “made it”? [16 mins]
  • What’s the process of writing a new hour for you? [21 mins 30 secs]
  • How drunk do you need to be to want to go on stage? [24 mins]
  • How did Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe help his international career? [28 mins]
  • Brian talked about how you’ve scaled down your operation to pretty much you and him, do you ever find working with one person lonely? [30 mins]
    • I guess you’re living situation reflects that because your scaled back and taking control of your life.
      • How do you define your role at the Bisbee compound? Are you the king of that domain or is it a socialist experiment? Or just a place you live? [30 mins]
  • His thoughts on comedy awards and accolades? [34 mins]
  • Would you stop drinking if you stopped doing stand up? [39 mins]
  • Do you ever worry your fan base will forget you when you take time off? [40 mins]
  • Do you think there’s a badge of humour within your fan base who “get it”? [42 mins]

Mental health…

  • How much do you drink before a show? [24 mins]
  • Social anxiety and booking venues and dealing with the worry about. [27 mins]
  • What responsibility do you feel to look after your fans? [53  mins]

Social media…

  • How has social media helped or hindered your career? [55 mins]
  • How do you deal with social media haters? [49 mins]
  • Do you get annoyed when people pirate your work? [55 mins]
  • Do you use social media to find new inspirations or comedians? [47 mins]
  • His thoughts on NetFlix and recording shows. [49 mins]

Edinburgh Fringe…

  • Why did you go to the Edinburgh Fringe? [32 mins]
  • How did winning the award change your job / career? Did it have an impact on your standing in the US? [33 mins]







Simon Caine is a comedian, author, podcaster, writer and social media manager. He's the host of the Ask The Industry Podcast (iTunes link) , writer of jokes for Twitter and teller of gags on the London comedy scene. He's also the person writing this and it is taking all his willpower not to make a "Simon Says" joke.
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