By Tasha A. Harris,
NYC Comedy Journalist
The Magazine That
Stands Up For Comedy
Nice Guys Don't Always Finish Last...
Blazes New Path From Bringer Comic to
Club Manager and Explains Why Comedy
Coaches Can't Teach You How to Be Funny
By Tasha A. Harris, Editor-In-Chief
It’s one hour before the primetime show on a warm
Wednesday night at New York Comedy Club and Buddy Flip,
a tall, robust man with jet black hair, sits at the podium
checking in comedians and wait staff while answering
phones and greeting walk-in guests.
His easy-going and affable presence would make one wonder how did such a nice guy end up
managing one of New York City’s top comedy clubs. I found part of the answer in an email
I received from Buddy promoting his “Best Stand-Up Workshop Ever” for advanced students.
The course description looked similar to that of other comedy classes but it was what Buddy
said in closing - that "extra little something" that caught my attention: Let me explain one
BIG difference between me and every other stand-up workshop in NYC. I am the only comedy class
teacher who is also a MANAGER of a major NYC comedy club. I am the only teacher who can actually
put his students on a real live comedy club show even after the course is over. Only people who run
comedy clubs can give you real stage time…No workshop gives you more STAGE TIME.
Buddy’s confidence and competitive spirit instantly sparked interest, so I met with him to
discuss how he worked his way up at New York Comedy Club, from bringer comic to manager
and why comedy coaches can't teach you how to be funny.
How did you get started doing stand up?
I started doing stand up in 1990. I had a character that I was performing that accidentally
became the stand up that I am. I lived on the Lower Eastside and was doing kind of this
crazy act, musical character…I was playing a gig on 49th Street at Alooney’s and upstairs
was the New York Comedy Club.
Someone came downstairs from the New York Comedy Club and saw me…and said come
upstairs – they’re having a show. I had this crazy costume on and my guitar. I had two or
three song parodies. I went up there and got the most amazing response. It was insane.
I rocked from beginning to end and Al Martin [owner of New York Comedy Club] said,
“You got to come back tomorrow night.”
I went back the next night and did the same exact thing – dead silence…The second night
I ate it as bad as the first night I rocked it. And then I went back.
What was the name of your character?
Buddy Flip. Some friends and I worked in TV. Communism fell in 1989 and we had this idea
that there was going to be this huge market for American television in Eastern Europe and
me and some friends came up with this fake documentary about this guy Buddy Flip, who
was a lounge singer…we spent six months videotaping and nothing ever came of it but in
the interim, I went out and performed as Buddy Flip on the Lower East Side.
I had an acoustic guitar and I would sing a Led Zeppelin song, a Neil Diamond song, a
bubble gum pop song. It was just this weird stuff but it wasn’t stand up because it
didn’t have the jokes and the laughs. It was that Lower Eastside, “ha-ha, isn’t that funny?”
kind of thing. I went to do New York Comedy Club and then I fell into stand up and I kept
So this is your home club?
Oh yeah. I’ve had my finger in this club a long time. In 1990, I started out. I did a ton of
bringer shows. Al Martin invented the bringer show.