Fringe Benefits: Hanging with Comedian Brian Regan

Steve Mazan hangs with comedians Brian Regan, and Gary Cannon, who appear in the documentary Dying to do Letterman.

Steve with comedians Brian Regan & Gary Cannon (who appear in Dying to do Letterman) and friend Scott.

There are so many things I love about being a comedian: The creativity, the laughter, the travel. But I think my favorite thing is that once you are a working stand-up you can pretty much walk into any club and watch the show for free. Even when the show’s packed I can stand in a corner and watch the best in the business work. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, Sarah Silverman and Lewis Black work their magic from the back of a full house. It never gets old.

This past weekend I got to see my favorite comic, Brian Regan, at The Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles. I went with my wife Denise and my friends Gary and Scott. Brian is their favorite too. This time we didn’t have to stand. Brian was nice enough to hook us up with great tickets and backstage passes. Brian isn’t just my favorite, he’s widely considered the best in the business, so it was like seeing the Beatles at Shea Stadium and then going back to their dressing rooms.

The show was amazing—Brian did a riotous hour and a half of new material followed by an encore of his greatest hits. Backstage we got to thank him for his generosity, swap a couple stories and take a photo before he loaded onto his tour bus for Phoenix. It was the first time I had seen Brian since I interviewed him for the “Dying To Do Letterman” documentary. I told him we had just wrapped up editing and that he was hilarious in the movie. Brian said he couldn’t wait to see it.

It’s surreal to think that I’ve been able to interview my idol, see him live at a great venue, and hang with him backstage—AND then to have him say he can’t wait to see the project I’m working on? Incredible. The truth is I can’t wait for him to see the film either. I can’t wait for everyone to see this film. And for everyone to see Brian in it. If you haven’t seen Brian’s comedy, do yourself a favor and check him out. You’ll see why he’s my favorite and why I’m so happy that he’s part of my movie.