The dark, often self-destructive comic has a new book and a new lease on life, and headlines the Borgata’s Music Box on Saturday, Aug. 25.
Artie Lange is a train wreck and that’s just one reason to catch the unpredictable comic/radio personality.
The mercurial Lange is a politically incorrect wise guy, who has been as sarcastic as he has been high over his long, strange but amusing journey.
The observational humorist is unlike most contemporary entertainers. He walks a high wire on and off stage.
Like a slugger, Lange has had big hits and misses while performing under the lights and joking on the Howard Stern Show for nearly a decade. Lange is big on taking risks, some of which have paid off royally and others, well, those are best put behind him.
“That’s the way it should be,” Lange says while calling from his Hoboken apartment. “Nobody takes chances anymore. It’s not fun. Nothing is cool anymore. Country music ain’t cool. If Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash were around, they would be sick. You look at what’s happening in rock music and I just wish Jimi Hendrix would return from the grave and punch everyone in the face.”
The former Mad TV cast member lives like rockers from a generation ago. He lives hard but he can still tell the tale, barely. In 2010 he tried to commit suicide and landed in a psychiatric ward for eight months.
“I was in a dark hole for a long time,” Lange says. “It was horrible and I’m lucky to be alive.”
The experience prompted Crash and Burn, a book, which will hit shelves in October. The project chronicles Lange’s near death experience and comeback.
“I hit bottom and it was hell for a long time,” Lange says. “I look at the last three years and I’m just happy to be here.”
Crash and Burn is the follow-up to Too Fat to Fish, which entered the New York Times best-seller list at No. 1 in 2008.
Lange has made the most off of his appetite for self destruction.
“I’m having fun with it,” Lange says. “My fans are having fun with it. No matter what, I’m still me.”
The irreverent Lange, who will perform Saturday, Aug. 25, at the Borgata, has been dealing with demons that have almost taken him away but he has never lost his black humor and ability to shock behind the microphone.
“Last month, I was sickened when I saw Justin Bieber on the cover of Rolling Stone,” Lange says. “It said ‘Justin Bieber, hot, ready, legal.’ I had the urge to help Jerry Sandusky break out of jail so he could spend some time with Bieber. C’mon, it’s ridiculous who Rolling Stone puts on the cover these days.”
Lange is content to deliver stand-up and co-host the Nick and Artie Show with comic Nick DiPaolo, which airs on SiriusXM and is syndicated by Premiere Radio Networks.
“I’m having a great time with Nick,” Lange says. “We talk about whatever we feel like, which is like the show I do on the road. It beats what my dad did [toiled as a general contractor]. I have no complaints and I’m just thrilled to still be alive.”
New Jersey has helped shape the comedic sense of the former longshoreman at Port Newark. Lange is a quintessential Garden Stater. He grew up in Newark, has a place in Toms River and enjoys coming to Atlantic City.
“New Jersey has had a huge effect on me,” Lange says. “I’m Jersey through-and-through. Growing up in New Jersey when I did just gave me a natural edge. It gave me that sarcasm, which I’ve used as a comic. You’re a certain way if you live in New Jersey. I played a million clubs in New Jersey. I played Rascals, Bananas and all of these odd rooms like [the ones] part of T.G.I. Fridays. I think there is something about working your way up in New Jersey. There’s no place like it. I love it here, whether I’m in North Jersey or down in Atlantic City. I have such a good time in Atlantic City. I’ve been going down there for a long time and the fans, whether they’re from New Jersey, New York or Philadelphia, they’ve been very supportive.”
As the weather starts to warm up, so will the lineup for weekly entertainment nightlife at Revel’s award-winning The Social this spring.
Life is about experiences, not fun for Adam Carolla. That’s the reason the comic/actor/radio host agreed to perform on Dancing With The Stars in 2008. That’s why he appeared on the last edition of Donald Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice, which aired last winter.
During the spring of 2006, three months before Lucky Louie premiered on HBO, it was obvious that Louis C.K. was on his way to becoming the hardest working man in show business.
Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall
Rush to the Taj
Interview with Wanda Sykes
Coastie Turned Scribe