Nick Cannon might not be the first name you think of when asked to name a stand-up comedian.
For your consideration, know that Cannon actually got his start knocking around the stand-up clubs since he was fifteen years old, he’s had close ties to the stand-up community ever since and will mark a return to the solo stage with the Showtime premiere of his new stand-up special, Mr. Showbiz on May 14th with a digital release on May 14th and CD release on May 31st via New Wave Dynamics.
Most people’s first clear memories of the man was when he became one of television’s youngest staffed comedy writers at the age of 17, writing for the Nickelodeon sketch comedy show All That. A show that if you’re under the 25 you’re probably lying to yourself if you say you didn’t watch growing up. A show that also spawned current Saturday Night Live cast member Keenan Thompson.
Cannon has since moved on to land comedic roles in movies, television, and radio. However, this is a comedy website and we’re going to examine that, and there’s lots of it.
When Cannon put together his MTV show Wild ‘N Out it merged youth culture, sketch comedy, and improv. He was the man in charge and it allotted a platform to showcase some up-and-coming comedic talents… and highlight him he did. A short list of comedians that Cannon brought onto the show included a young Katt Williams. Orlando Jones, Kevin Hart, Cedric The Entertainer, Mike Epps, Andy Milonakis, Jamie Kennedy, Pauly Shore, Bruce Bruce, Jeff Ross, Loni Love, and one of Saturday Night Live’s newest cast members Taran Killam. Not a bad list of comedic names for any improv show’s resume.
We began to hear rumblings that Cannon was planning a return to his stand-up roots a while back, and he has all pistons firing for Mr. Showbiz. The stand-up special was filmed in the Palm’s Casino in Vegas, and given Cannon’s history to write, spot, and showcase comedic talent; he’s clearly doing something right. Comedy fans could simply dismiss the special as just another celebrity trying to do stand-up, and trust us; there are plenty of case studies for this phenomenon. Nevertheless, that might be shortsighted when it comes to Nick Cannon.
Like all great stand-up, comedians draw from their personal experiences and if Cannon delivers comedic timing about his life and how he interacts with it, we’re pretty sure Mr. Showbiz will not be the start, but the continuation to the next chapter of an already impressive comedy story.