Top Canadian comedian Tom Stade is no stranger to Aberdeen… he’s regularly at the Breakneck Comedy Club.
This Saturday he’s playing The Lemon Tree with the UK tour of his new show, I Swear To…
Coming direct from the Edinburgh Fringe, Tom explores where he fits into the new world of feelings and FaceTime and tries to figure out when he and all his stuff became vintage.
Society caught up with Tom ahead of his Aberdeen show.
You are coming back to Aberdeen again… you must really like this city.
I think it is on my migration path. I go to whichever town where 100 people know me.
It’s not that long since you were here to play the Breakneck Comedy Club.
Yeah, I always play there because I love Naz Hussain (the Breakneck Comedy Club founder). The man has made comedy possible in Aberdeen. I remember when I used to do preview shows, he would have nights in a club called Snafu and he would always let me do my three nights in a row. It was always fabulous. So Aberdeen was one of my training grounds for the longest time. But I love the fact I’m playing the Lemon Tree up there because I know I’m going to have a good night.
Since you started playing here have you seen a big shift in the comedy scene? After all you were one of the first acts to play the first Aberdeen Comedy Festival.
Of course I have. You guys now have your own purpose built comedy club. I think Aberdeen is going to get comedy savvy real fast now.
You’re bringing your show I Swear To… to the Lemon Tree. You swear to do what?
What I’m doing is exposing the three different generations. I’m exposing the baby boomers, I’m exposing Generation X and the Millennials. I’m trying to bring them all together. I feel like the show is more of a peace talk, like I’ve brought them to Camp David to sort some stuff out.
What are you sorting out for us?
Well, the most obvious is the iPhone and how people view it. To my mum, she just views it as “this is just ridiculous”, while we’re viewing it as “how come I can’t understand this” and these young people are like “you guys are so stupid!”
Your blurb for the show talks about you feeling vintage. What’s that about?
When you walk into a charity shop and look at the 501 jeans that were really expensive at one time and they’re down to £1.50 and that’s where you identify. You always feel young, but your body is becoming very vintage. It’s hard for me to get past being 21. The fact of the matter is, I’m the most experienced 21-year-old I know.
How does that carry into your comedy? How has it changed over the years?
You just keep upping your game. Every now and then you fall a couple back, but whatever, it’s the nature of the beast.
So does the current political situation feature in your show at all or do you steer clear of politics?
I kind of do, because I think it’s fleeting. When you want to put something out there I would rather it be timeless. I would wonder if whatever jokes I’m doing now, 20 years down the road would someone relate to them. Politics is there for talking head shows because they need so much material.
How do you prepare for tours?
I pretty much hit the road and go for it, but I’m always tweaking. From now until the end of the tour, my family aren’t going to know me because my mind is on every joke and how I can make it better. It’s a weird thing. So I do hit the road running. To be honest with you, I can’t believe I made it this far as a comedian, so I must be doing something right.
Do you find differences with audiences in different cities? Are Aberdeen crowds different to those in Edinburgh or Glasgow?
That’s interesting, because yes they are different. There’s no way you can say an Aberdeen crowd is the same as the Comedy Store crowd in London. It’s a different vibe. You have more locals in Aberdeen, whereas you play to tourists and have to be more universal in some places because you have different cultures watching you. Whereas Aberdeen wouldn’t have that, so you can play around with localisms.
What is your message for people coming to see your show in The Lemon Tree?
Just come down and have a good time.