Jim Breuer: Razor sharp like never before
Get ready for the ‘new Breu,’ when Jim Breuer performs Saturday, Aug. 29, at the Borgata.
The Saturday Night Live alum, best known for his “Goatboy” bit and playing a stoner in the cult film Half Baked, has reinvented himself.
Breuer has metamorphosed over the last year. The charismatic comic-actor has gone from outrageous and obscene to in control and clean.
“People that come out are so surprised that I don’t’ swear onstage anymore,” Breuer says while calling from his Hunderton County, N.J. home. “They walk out the door and they say, ‘He didn’t curse once!’ I don’t need to curse to crush a room.”
What Breuer has found to be truly superfluous as a comic is marijuana. Breuer indulged in pot over recent years but he junked the drug in 2007.
“That [marijuana] dragged me in the mud,” Breuer says. “Once I stopped the pot, I rediscovered something. I was pure onstage and really funny. I had an addiction. I had to stop it. My wife is so thankful I stopped and so am I since I’m much sharper without it. I’ve surprised myself by how on top of things I am. I’m not in a haze anymore. I finally discovered that I wasn’t doing myself any favors by living the lifestyle I was living. I had no idea back when I was [high] that it would be better to be like this [lucid]. It’s amazing to feel razor sharp.”
Breuer didn’t just change his lifestyle, he took a career risk by jettisoning his party image, which appealed to the frat crowd, in favor of becoming a family-oriented comic. However, the father of three pre-pubescent girls, believes that his audience has grown up with him.
“The people that came out to see me in their 20s are now older and have kids so they can relate,” says Breuer. “They love it. They come out and laugh and now they bring their parents. Since I’ve changed, my fan base has expanded. Before I might have had people up to 35 [years of age] come to the show, but now I have people from 18 to 55 coming out. I get families because they all can connect with what I’m talking about.”
Breuer, 41, riffs on what it’s like to be married with young children and having octogenarian parents.
“I have a lot of material because of the space that I’m in,” says Breuer. “I have a lot to talk about. People are going to be surprised. They’ll see that I can be clean and still be funny.”
Breuer is looking forward to his Atlantic City gig, partly due to its proximity to his favorite market, which is Philadelphia. “There is no other place like Philly,” says Breuer. “Philly is by far the best crowd and I’m not just saying that. They blow everybody else away.”
Expect Breuer to tell a bunch of stories since he has a plethora of entertaining tales at his disposal.
“I have a lot of anecdotes I probably shouldn’t tell, but what the hell?” says Breuer. “I’ve had so many things happen to me during my career and offstage. A lot of funny things have happened to me professionally and with my family.”
Breuer, who looks perpetually stoned, had a hilarious brush with Jack Nicholson during his Saturday Night Live days.
“Some people are born with big noses,” says Breuer. “Some people are born with moles on their face. I look stoned all the time. When I was on an elevator with Jack Nicholson he turned to me, lifted up his shades and said, ‘You look the way I feel.’ He basically told me he was stoned. I’ve lived with this my whole life. In junior high I was sent to the nurse’s office and I didn’t know why. My teacher sent me there twice threatening me that if I came to class in that condition he was going to ask for a urine sample and I thought it was because I was being silly. I had no clue what pot was in eighth grade.”
Even though Breuer is on the straight and narrow, his shows can still be out-of-control hilarious. It’s just that his performances are deeper than they’ve ever been before.
“I have it in me to be deep,” says Breuer. “I’ve just tapped into something and why not go further with it? I like this because I’m challenging myself and I’m having the biggest blast of my career with it. I think it’s normal for a performer to evolve. I guess some guys don’t change, but I was definitely ready for a change. It’ll be interesting to see what I try to do next. I’m ready for more comedic heavy lifting as I get older. You’ll never see me doing the same thing.”
Breuer is always a ball of energy when he hits the stage, but is fairly laid-back when he relaxes post-show. “I just put it all out there when I perform,” says Breuer. “I just attack and have fun.”
Where: Borgata Music Box, Atlantic City
When: Saturday, Aug. 29, 9pm
How Much: Sold Out
The versatile Dana Carvey, whose unforgettable characters include The Church Lady, Garth from the “Wayne’s World” sketches with Mike Myers, Hans from Hans and Franz with Nealon and President Bush junior and senior, took time out to chat with AC Weekly about this SNL mini reunion
"This is probably the last stand-up tour you’ll see for a while, toward the end of next year I’m going to start coming out with the band again."
If there were any doubts about how the Anti-Social Network tour would be received, those fears were squashed Friday night, Jan. 15, at the Borgata in Atlantic City, following the tour's debut show. Around 5:30pm, the four comedians on the bill — Bill Burr, Jim Breuer, Dave Attell, and the show's host comedian Jim Norton — appeared together ....
A Night at Revel
Summer Guide 2013
South Jersey, Meet New Orleans
A ‘Resolution’ for Lamb of God
Atlantic City Air Show Highlights
Concert Review: Willie Nelson
Mr. Unpredictable: Jay Mohr