In the continuing series of New Yorkers I love, there is no comedian in New York I love more than Big Jay Oakerson. Period. (Sorry Luis!). Where to begin? He is a fantastic stand-up, with plenty of well-written material that he weaves seamlessly in and out of completely off-the-cuff crowdwork. You know how most people come to a comedy show and think that the comedians are doing all-new stuff they just thought of right now and we all hate that? Well, that's kind of what Jay does, and we all fucking love it.
His stage persona is a sort of lovable scoundrel scumbag, and he's got wild tales for any situation to go along with it. And while he can be an intimidating figure at first glance, he's just a big old teddy bear, which comes across to the audience when he lets out a silly giggle, mid-story.
And he could not be a cooler person offstage. He and his partner in crime, Christine Evans, have been top tier most welcoming and helpful people to me since I moved here. And every single person I've ever spoken to who has met him even once has a story about some friendly favor he did for them, just because he's a nice guy. But don't get me wrong, he's no pussy, he'll bust your balls with the best of them and can take it like he gives it.
If you don't have the pleasure of living in NYC, where you can see him regularly at The Stand, The Comedy Cellar, Stand Up NY and pretty much everywhere, get a taste of Jay through one of his podcasts - Legion of Skanks or The Sex Drugs and RocknRoll Show.