Let’s start this properly: I, Eric Vetter, thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for reading this. That’s the first order of business.
The second order of business is to suppress the impulse to say, “Well, what are you doing online?? Life is going on all around you! Go outside for a walk in the glorious sun or the refreshing rain!” Or, perhaps, “Isn’t there a better way for you to be spending your online time?? There’s celebrity gossip, conspiracy theory sites, wacky cat videos and porn out there for you– go, bask!!” I’m a comic, these impulses are in the DNA.
But you stopped here, and you didn’t have to. So I thank you.
You know, when you’re a comic, or a writer, or a comic writer, or even an actor who writes or does comedy, people around you frequently say, “Dude– you should TOTALLY write a blog.” Now, there’s something there which, on the surface, seems to kinda makes some sense. And then, somehow, not. Being a creative person who does some (hopefully) interesting things does not necessarily denote a limitless, universal, entertainment skill set.
There’s perhaps no better illustration of this point than that found at any open mic in the city. A large percentage of the individuals who step up to the P.A. are there largely because they cracked up their friends, who then said, “Dude– you should TOTALLY do stand-up!!” Ignoring that, while they can make their friends shoot liquid out their noses after a drink or 20, there is still a craft to stand-up for which they may or may not possess an aptitude.
In like fashion have my friends said “Dude– you should TOTALLY write a blog!!”. Well, at least here here’s no 2 drink minimum.
That said, I believe I can justify this space thusly: while I may or may not prove to be a fascinating blogger, I am at the helm of a long-running comedy/variety show of which I’m most proud. So at least I have a decently interesting subject to start with.
What began as a sketch comedy group – God help me, “The No Name Players”, formed with Dawn Owens, a close friend from my college days – has morphed over time into its current comedy/variety format. One of the NYC’s best, I believe. “No Name… & A Bag O’ Chips” is, strictly speaking, a workout show, one wherein the performers don’t have to but are invited to play with new stuff; we inform the audience of this at the top of the show, and invite THEM to hang out afterward to share feedback with the performers on what they like or don’t like. I believe both of these aspects define what separates us from the pack.
First of all, even many workout shows don’t advertise the fact that they are what they are. We feel the audience will receive what they’re watching differently if they know what they’re about to view may soar with discovery-of-the-new or crash and burn, sending a fresh idea to a justly-deserved afterlife. (I think it’s fair to say our audience is, generally, the most openly nurturing in town.) Secondly, how many shows offer you the chance to shoot the shit about comedy with such pros as Christian Finnegan, Tom Shillue, Leighann Lord, Jim Mendrinos, et al?
And, oh yeah– it’s FREE!!
So I begin this blog mostly with the intent of talking about “No Name… & A Bag O’ Chips”. I may also speak on our other projects, such as our singers’ workout show (“No Name presents The Uptown Cabaret”, soon to have its own blog via MC Alex De Suze) or our jazz-&-comedy show (“Jazz, w/ A Touch Of No Name: The Gerry Eastman Group @ WMC”, further exemplifying our embrace of brief but catchy show titles…). But you never know– Bag O’ Chips began with the intent of bringing live sketch comedy to the clubs; sometimes these things tell YOU what they’re supposed to be, and I would not be surprised if that becomes the case with this blog.
So the adventure begins. As with all of my life’s endeavors, I follow but one basic precept: try not to screw up too badly. If you’re still reading, I want you to know how very much I appreciate you being here. Whether you are a friend, a longtime No Name supporter, or just a confused person who went looking for “The No-Real-Names-Used Online Sex Cabaret” yet kept on reading, I thank you. And I love you all.