Come out for a night of R-rated, no-holds barred comedy for Halloween with The Heathens of Comedy! The Heathens have worked with some of the biggest names in comedy, recorded albums, and have been seen on TV! Come in your best costume and the winner gets a Wiley’s gift certificate! Doors open at 9PM, show starts at 9:30PM! Tickets are $10.00 in advance, $15.00 at the door! Call 937-224-5653 or go online for advanced ticket sales!
Wiley's Comedy Club
A night of no-holds barred comedy!
They just don’t work or play well with others.
The Heathens of Comedy are the brainchild of comedian Lee Mays, who recruited regional funnywoman Bobbie Jo Stevens, YouTube viral comedic sensation Chase Patterson, comedy club veteran Steve “Pops” Gaines, and a rotating cast of characters who never fail to disappoint.
The Heathens of Comedy are currently touring the Midwest and beyond to shows that are earning respect and acclaim among their peers and praise from audiences who are looking for something fresh.
The Heathens of Comedy do stand-up comedy the way it’s supposed to be.
Originally opened in 1982 by Dan Lafferty and his wife Jody on Patterson Road, Wiley’s Comedy Club is one of the longest running clubs in the country and the oldest in Ohio. Sometime in 1990 the club moved to it’s current home in the Historic Oregon District. After 17 years at the helm of the business Lafferty sold the club to stand up comic Rob Haney, who is also a writer for the Bob & Tom radio show. Now, fourteen years later, and for the first time in the club history, the new ownership group are not Daytonians. The team is headed up by stand up comic Steve Hofstetter.
Author’s confession- I worked at Wiley’s in 1993, before I bought Jokers Comedy Cafe. It was at Jokers that I first booked Hofstetter, bringing him in for a special one night show he was promoting aimed at college students. I’d never seen his show, but based on his success on the college circuit, his status as the original writer for collegehumor.com, and his persistence in pursuing the booking, I took a chance on him. While I don’t remember much about his humor (which generally means his show was fine- the ones that sucked and those that rocked the rooms are the ones that stand out from my 25+ years of comedy) what I did come away with was the sense that this New Yorker had the determination and drive to make a success out of anything he undertook. I lost track of him along the way, but would occasionally hear about his latest accomplishment. I heard he’d taken over a failing club in Indy and knew he was still hustling his way through comedy clubs.
Then one morning in July I started getting phone calls and facebook messages asking if I’d bought Wiley’s. Rumors were out that Rob had sold the club and folks were asking if I’d bought the club. I chuckled, and gave my standard answer, “been there, done that, not going back.” Later that day I posted this update on the MostMetro.com Facebook page:
“As of October 1st, Wiley’s Comedy Club will have new ownership. Comedian Steve Hofstetter will be the managing partner.
This will be the 3rd club they own, adding to their Indy and Louisville clubs. Steve is a hustler and knows how to promote so expect some exciting things to happen when he takes over!”
So I reached out to Steve and asked him a few questions about taking over Wiley’s:
What made Dayton an attractive city for you to buy a club in?
SH: I’ve been performing there for ten years. I’ve done shows at multiple clubs, as well as Wright State and U. of Dayton. The vibe of the neighborhood in particular is what got us. It is a working class town, but filled with artists and young people actively looking for something interesting to do. Who wouldn’t want to run a club here? It’s also a Bob & Tom city, and so are our other clubs. This club in particular is a great fit – amazing bones, but not doing much re: social media and modern technology, which is what we do best. In addition, we specialize in clubs in the midwest. Our other two are in Louisville and Indy – both 2 hours from Dayton. We can do wonderful things regarding routing big comedians through the three cities.
What changes can guests expect at the club?
SH: Our philosopy is that we are responsible for the customer’s night as soon as they get out of their car, and every aspect of the experience must be considered accordingly. Our other clubs are known for quality food and a vast liquor selection, in addition to great talent. Because we have the ability to book in bulk, customers will quickly see an increase in celeb acts. We will also focus on building more of the local artists – with opportunities to grow in our organization, we’ll be teaching the local comedians to think beyond open mics and hopefully churn out some amazing acts from the scene. Rob Haney has done great things at Wiley’s over the years. Our job is to take it to the next level.
Who’s your favorite all time comic and favorite still playing clubs? (and no, you can’t say yourself)
SH: All time is Bill Hicks. Also love me some Mitch Hedberg and Eddie Izzard (who is still gigging, just not at clubs). My favorite current club acts are probably Greg Warren and Tom Simmons. But there are so many wonderful ones it’s really hard to choose (MM:Since Greg Warren is probably my best friend in comedy, Steve wins some brownie points for that answer).
Originally from Oklahoma and now living in Indy, this drama school graduate trained for the rigors of making people laugh and has been so successful that he has performed at the prestigious HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival. B.T.’s physical performance style and charm landed him two performances on NBC’s “Friday Night Videos”. He has also appeared on BET Comic View, MTV’s The Jenny McCarthy Show, and FOX’s The Keenan Ivory Wayans Show. B.T. is only on the show for tonight, come this weekend, Steve Hofstetter will be taking the stage at his newest club.
Wishing them well and looking forward to the new energy Hofstetter will bring to Wiley’s Comedy Joint. Stop on out to the club at 101 Pine Street in the Oregon District, with shows Thursday through Sunday at 8pm, with a second show at 10:15pm on Friday and Saturday. You can purchase tickets on their website or call the club for more information at 937-224-5653.
When I was younger, I would try to make all of my family and friends laugh by doing impersonations and/or spout off silly comments and observations. I had a few (and I mean few) individuals make comments about how I should be a comedian. And I actually thought about going into that world. I figured that if I made a few people giggle at my dumb jokes-I could easily have an amazing experience. As time went on, I determined that I should just stick to I know, and be a writer.
For comedian Jackie Kashian, the past couple of years have been anything but relaxing. Recently, Kashian has bumped being on the road and performing at comedy clubs from 25 weeks to 35 weeks a year. Luckily for Kashian, though, a typical week will consist of being on the road for 3 to 4 days, and the rest of the week being home. The days being at home are particularly a nice welcoming to normalcy in part due to Kashian recently getting married. “I’m a beacon of hope for everyone who ever to get married and never thought that they would,” Kashian playfully said to me during our phone conversation. On August 8th, Kashian will be performing at Wiley’s Comedy Club, located at 101 Pine Street in Dayton, Ohio.
Growing up in the state of Wisconsin, around the Milwaukee area to be exact, Kashian grew up with five siblings and a father that was a salesman. Kashian mentioned that during her childhood, her father never had anything related to comedy in the house. “We would always listen to motivational speakers…I learned more about pitching and closing the deal than comedy.” It wasn’t till she was a little older and attending college in Madison, Wisconsin when she discovered the world of stand-up comedy. Kashian attended a show one night at the local comedy club, and loved it. She kept going to the club to watch the other comedians to the point that the manager approached her one night. “The manager came over and said to me ‘Open Mic. Sunday.’” Kashian said. So, Kashian without any hesitation went to the club to do a set at the open mic. “It was like heroin…the first time I did it, I’m sure I was terrible, but I just going back.” For eight months, Kashian would go to the comedy club and perform every night. “I was the only woman, so I got lots and lots of stage time,” Kashian added.
Kashian wanted to leave college and continue to pursue comedy after the eight month stint at the local club, but her sister pressured her to finish. After she graduated college, Kashian packed up her belongings and moved up to Minneapolis, Minnesota. The decision to move to Minneapolis was in part a start over. “Whenever you move to another city in stand-up comedy, you have to reinvent the wheel a little bit,” Kashian says. The change of scenery gave Kashian a better audience to perform to, and it allowed new eyeballs to see and ears to hear her set. Kashian lived in Minneapolis for about six to seven years, and then relocated to her current residence in Los Angeles.
According to Kashian’s website (www.jackiekashian.com), she describes herself by saying “comedy is like listening to a really racy episode of All Things Considered”. Her material comprises a multitude of past and present experiences of her family life by telling stories about her siblings and her father when she was growing and today. Kashian’s views on relationships are very unique, fascinating, and extremely out of the ordinary in her work. The reason is because she has had one relationship in her entire life-the one she is currently in with her now husband, having just gotten married near the age of 40. “I just never wanted to date,” Kashian explains. “My husband always says that it’s great that I never really had a boyfriend because he doesn’t really have any expectations to meet, and the bar is low. I just tell him that the bar is not low, my expectations of him are to be a decent human being.” Her presence on the stage, along with the delivery of her jokes, is light-hearted and fun. Kashian is very sarcastic, but also very pleasurable to be around.
Kashian’s resume includes a half hour special on Comedy Central, being a semi-finalist on the NBC television contest Last Comic Standing, and recently being featured on Conan on TBS. Her second comedy album, It Is Never Going To Be Bread was one of the top ten comedy albums of the year on Amazon. Kashian also hosts a weekly cult favorite podcast called “The Dork Forest” where she creates a safe space for people to admit that thing they dork out about more than anyone. Kashian recently has released her newest stand up special This Will Make An Excellent Horcrux and it is available on the website www.allthingsrecords.com for $5.
I wonder what it would be like to be up on stage and perform rehearsed material to the gathering of patrons at comedy clubs. I wonder if my jokes would have the on-lookers rolling on the floor, laughing uncontrollably. Individuals would be reaching out to their napkins and/or tissue to wipe off the tears that are rolling down from their eyes. Others would lean onto the person sitting next to them, smiling and chuckling. My material would be your typical observational humor, chronicling the misadventures of my life and what I have experienced. Throughout my set, I would share the high jinxs and shenanigans of my youth and early adulthood. I also feel like maybe it wouldn’t fare well and I should just leave it up to folks who have been putting in their time.
Case in point-the wonderful Jackie Kashian.
Jackie Kashian’s show is at Wiley’s Comedy Club is Friday, August 8th at 8:00pm. Preshow admission price is only $12. Admission is $16.00 on the day of the show. To purchase tickets online, just click this link – http://www.showclix.com/event/dayton
“My college roommate thought he was Hunter Thompson. He started calling me Dr. Gonzo. I asked him why, and he threw me the book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. ‘Gonzo’ refers to someone who takes it to the edge without falling off.”
And Gonzo sure has. After receiving his degree in 1977, he and a buddy moved to San Francisco to produce a play. “For a long time there, I worked at mindless jobs — putting boxes in boxes, sweeping rain off roofs. I made some money playing guitar.”
Gonzo started to get gigs at the Boarding House, in San Francisco, and other popular clubs — “the places where Steve Martin and Robin Williams performed,” he says. At that time, he was developing his special mix of humor and song. He opened for the Bay Area band Huey Lewis and the News for more than a year and appeared in the band’s videos.
Means also toured with another San Francisco band, Jefferson Starship, did some shows with Stevie Ray Vaughan and told jokes on the syndicated Los Angeles comedy radio show, “Five O’Clock Funnies.”
“I was the cartoon before the movie. When I was on the road with a band, I stopped in local comedy clubs and met all these wise guys. Then I started working the clubs all the time.” In 1991, he was asked to open for Joe Walsh during a time when Walsh’s band, the Eagles, was not together. “I got to live my rock ‘n’ roll fantasy. I was playing with one of my idols.”
I first met Dr. Gonzo sometime in the late 80’s when he was one of the top touring comedy headliners and I was a young club manager, running the show and partying til dawn after the shows each night. I can’t say my memories are all that clear about a lot of what happened back in those days, but I do remember one weekend night Gonzo was playing a club I managed in Buckhead, the hot night spot in Atlanta. We were packed the first show, the bar was rocking and Gonzo was on stage living up to his “Doc of Comedy Rock” billing. The box office summoned me to deal with some dude that was saying he had a back stage pass that John left for him. I head up, see a scruffy looking guy in a ball cap that looked pretty wasted and insisting “John left me a back stage pass.” I laughed and said, sorry no such thing as a backstage pass at a comedy club and there was no John working the club.
In between shows Gonzo mentioned he was supposed to leave a ticket for a friend of his that was in town for a gig. I laughed and said oh, was it a backstage pass, making fun of the dude from the box office earlier. He laughed too, and said just leave a ticket for Lewis. Then he said, he may ask for me by my real name, John Means. Suddenly I got a weird feeling, I think I’d just turned away his friend. I told Gonzo that and just chuckled and told me I’d kicked out Huey Lewis. He was in town for a gig the next day and had asked Gonzo to jam with him. Gonzo, being the nice guy he was, just laughed and said it would be all right. And later that night, as all three of us were hanging out back at the hotel, we were all feeling pretty good and laughing and it was all right.
I haven’t seen Dr. Gonzo in years. He moved back to his hometown of Mason City, Illinois in the 90’s to raise his son. He ran for and won a place on the City Council, started teaching at the local college and as we all said in the comedy business, he grew up and went legit. He and his wife bought and ran an Italian restaurant in town and then a second. In 2011 Gonzo came out of retirement to perform at the 30th anniversary of Comedy Day in San Francisco, his old stomping grounds. What he learned is that after 30 years, he could still make people laugh. And he’ll be doing that this weekend in Dayton.
Catch Dr. Gonzo at Wiley’s Comedy Club in the Oregon District.
Friday March 14th at 9:00pm with an admission of $12.00
Saturday March 15th at 8:00pm and 10:30pm with an admission of $15.00
DMM Ticket Giveaway
DMM has 2 pairs of tickets for Friday night’s show. We’ll do a drawing at 4pm Friday and post the winner’s names on this post. To enter the drawing, like this post and fill out the form below.
Our contest is closed, congratulations to Scott Strawser and Patsy Sanders-Mercuri