STAND-UP TUESDAYS: Joe Zimmerman

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Stand-Up Tuesdays is a weekly comedy spotlight written by the wonderfully talented Angie Frissore. Covering both known and unknown comics, Stand-up Tuesdays is your new source for all things funny.

This week, Angie puts a spotlight on Joe Zimmerman’s comedy career. If you or your comedy troupe would like to be featured on Stand-Up Tuesdays, please email utgjames@gmail.com.

Comedian Joe Zimmerman‘s debut album, Smiling at Wolves, was released late last month by New Wave Dynamics and offers a highly entertaining – and almost relaxing – hour of comedy. Recorded in North Carolina, Smiling at Wolves is an incredibly strong debut effort from Zimmerman which is quickly rising through the iTunes charts.

If stand-up comedy were music, Joe Zimmerman would be like a smooth jazz riff. His laid back stage presence and perfectly paced delivery offer an almost easy-listening experience, allowing audiences to kick back, relax, and simply enjoy Zimmerman’s hilarious inner conversations and observations – which he kicks off with a very strong case for getting off of Ritalin: “I would read the whole internet, which I think is too much. I don’t think you’re supposed to finish Google.”

Zimmerman’s a smart comedian, often offering up random references or bits of information about all-too forgotten presidents like Andrew Jackson – but he’s also quite goofy and fun, as evidenced when he refers to a missing horse as ‘Pony Danza’ (if you don’t laugh at Pony Danza you just don’t have a soul, come on). He’s a likable, approachable guy who expertly combines absurdities with intellectual humor. Who could ask for more than that? Unless, of course, you’re more of a dick joke person.

Last year saw Zimmerman’s Comedy Central debut on John Oliver’s New York Stand Up Show as well as his late night debut on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. He appeared on the nationally syndicated Bob & Tom Show, and was chosen as one of the acclaimed New Faces at Just For Laughs Montreal, where he was well-received by critics. Zimmerman is also an original member of The Beards of Comedy, the most requested tour in the Southeast from 2008-2012. The Beards released two albums (2011’s Cardio Mix on Comedy Central Records); their Beards Across America MSN web series amassed more than a million views.

I have to admit, I’ve been pretty blessed so far in 2014 to be able to bring you week after week of consistently strong releases, and Joe Zimmerman’s Smiling at Wolves is simply no exception. I’ve often compared good comedy to old-timey radio shows, and Smiling at Wolves is a perfect example of that: Zimmerman is so engaging and entertaining that you want to just sit and enjoy his performance, without focusing any attention on any other distractions. Grab your copy today on iTunes – or better yet, grab a copy for your Valentine (chicks dig a guy who can make them laugh, but they never said you couldn’t use a middle man!)

Grade: A

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