LA guests! Nato cd taping! Other news!

If you’re in LA on Monday, April 30, come see Laughter Against the Machine do two shows (730 & 930) at the Improv Comedy Lab in Los Angeles. Advance tickets here. There are some half-price tickets with the code “LATMfan.”

For the 730pm show, Kamau, Janine and Nato will be joined by Greg Proops, Maria Bamford, and Jimmy Dore. Woah!

For the 930pm show, we’ll be joined by Maria Bamford, Aparna Nancherla, and Hasan Minhaj. Boom!

Also, on Tuesday, May 8th at the New Parish in Oakland, Nato will record his debut comedy cd with Rooftop Comedy over two live shows at 7 & 9pm. These shows will also feature Kevin Camia and Dhaya Lakshminarayanan. Advance tickets here.

We look forward to releasing our tour documentary on June 9 at Netroots Nation in Providence, Rhode Island.

For funsies, this interview with Kamau about his forthcoming Late-Night Show on FX is entertaining and easy on the eyes.

And Janine co-wrote a hilarious list of suggested legislation by women to regulate men’s reproductive health. Dig it.


Big news, various

Are you sitting down?

We’re pleased to announce that we’ll be premiering the Laughter Against the Machine tour documentary at Netroots Nation 2012. The conference runs June 7-10 in Providence, Rhode Island. We’ll also be teaming up with Laughing Liberally for a standup comedy show.

Also, our own W. Kamau Bell will be starring in a new late-night show on FX, slated to premiere in August, which will be executive-produced by Chris Rock.

We’re performing in Portland, Oregon and showing clips from the documentary at the Rebooting Democracy Conference on April 19. The show is open to the public.

The first-ever Laughter Against the Machine shows in Los Angeles will be Monday, April 30 at 730pm & 930pm at the Improv Lab. Advance tickets here.

Nato is recording his first comedy CD at 7 & 9pm on Tuesday, May 8 in Oakland at the New Parish. Advance tickets here.

The last chances for people in the Bay Area to see Kamau before the FX show kicks off will be with Nato on Mondays at the Comedy SuperPAC at the Hemlock Tavern or on Tuesday, April 17 with a new edition of the W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour. Advance tickets here.

You can stand up now.

–Kamau, Janine, Nato

Thank you Baratunde for big upping us at SXSW!

Welcome new visitors who found us from Baratunde’s keynote address at SXSW
Thanks to our friend Baratunde Thurston for showing a rough clip from our forthcoming documentary.
Here it is if you weren’t lucky enough to see it live or streaming — or if you just want to see it again.)
There are a couple of ways you can get involved:
We are still raising funds to help finish the movie.
Make a Donation to Help Us Finish Our Tour Documentary
Like us on Facebook
Watch us on YouTube
Join our E-mail List for special clips, tickets and other exclusive offers!

Bring us to your town! Contact us at

Laughter Against the Machine your Sketchfest!

THIS THURSDAY 2/2, Laughter Against Machine is presenting a special show for SF Sketchfest at the Eureka Theatre. W. Kamau Bell, Janine Brito, & Nato Green will give you a first look at clips from our upcoming tour documentary, a Q&A moderated by writer Hiya Swanhuyser, and ye olde stand-up comedy. Even if you’ve seen us recently, there will be plenty of new LATM material for you to enjoy, and we have no more LATM shows in the Bay Area on the docket in 2012. Info and tickets here.

Huffington Post recently ran a great interview with Kamau about our take on “political” comedy. Read it here.

In other HuffPo news, Nato has a new blog we hope you enjoy: “Fighting Cynicism Without and Within,” about how Occupy Wall Street achieved something historically unprecedented by getting Nato to shut up.

Dig it!

LATM to SF Sketchfest 2/2, and LATM gets into trouble

Happy New Year!

We can’t wait to finish the documentary and get it to you soon.

In the meantime, SF Sketchfest is presenting a special evening with Laughter Against the Machine on Thursday, February 2 at the Eureka Theatre in San Francisco. In addition to stand-up, we’ll be showing the first clips from the forthcoming tour documentary that happened because of you, and there will be a Q&A moderated by writer Hiya Swanhuyser. Hope you can come. We released another rough cut video from the tour, of jokes by Nato about our visits to six Occupy Wall Street sites.

Also, we’ve been busy lately, collectively and singly.

Janine had the 3rd installment of her joint venture with Emily Heller: Girl Talk at the SF Punchline. The SF Weekly saluted Janine & Emily for their “commitment to boundary-pushing, brutally funny comedy that’s staunchly populist but could still send a grad student looking for her well-worn copy of Gender Trouble.”

Meanwhile, Kamau wrote a piece in Colorlines with the journalistically objective title, “5 Signs You’re Acting Like a White Guy (Or, How To Not Be Gene Marks)” about the white Forbes columnist who decided to hold forth on what he would do if he were poor and black. According to Marks, black poverty could be solved if only black kids had the good sense to realize they need good grades and to watch TED talks. Kamau’s response, while simultaneously funny and profound in the way we can rely on from Kamau, also offended some white guys who didn’t want to be lumped together with jerks. Or something.

Kamau also wrote about how Louis CK is in the rare position of being both the comedian the mainstream media is most interested in while comedians generally agree that he’s the MAN.

Finally, our 4th Annual New Year’s Eve shows at the Phoenix Theatre in San Francisco were sold out, fun, and raucous as usual. They were also attended by great press coverage by the likes of the SF Examiner, the Bay Citizen, and the East Bay Express. For example, the East Bay Express described “the consistently thought-provoking content and the performers’ keen ability to stay on top of pop culture.”

We do our best.

Concrete Jungle Where Dreams and Pizzas Are Maaaade Of….

Unless you’ve been living in an underground tunnel somewhere, a la the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or a recently overthrown dictator, you’ve probably heard of this little thing that’s been sweeping the nation. Oh, you know, OCCUPY. That little old thing. That movement of young, old, employed, unemployed, underemployed, radical, moderate, black, brown, white, queer, and straight. That movement of everyone who’s been paying attention to the widening wealth gap, our economy falling apart, corporations taking over our government, y’know, things getting shittier right before our very eyes. THAT thing.

Well, the Occupy movement started pretty soon after LATM embarked on its nationwide tour and I’m not saying we started the whole thing, but some people are…okay, fine. No one’s saying we started Occupy. But we knew we couldn’t make a tour documentary about the state of our nation without jumping right into it.

The three of us have been visiting our own nearest occupies (what with being human beings who care about things offstage as well) but felt we needed to add an emergency stop given THE ADVENT OF THE REVOLUTION. So Nato and Kamau flew out to New York (where I’d been living for two months) so that the three of us could visit Zuccotti Park, talk to those occupying Wall Street, and put on a show for the people of Liberty Square.

Oh yeah and we pretty much had three days to figure it all out. Three days to figure out: flights, places to stay, time to talk to people on the ground, finding an available theater close to Zuccotti, letting people know said show would be happening, and figuring out what we’d say onstage. No big. Right?

After a couple days of frantic phone calls and theater visits, Kamau, Nato, Keri, and our filmmakers Mike and Evan arrived and we headed out to Zuccotti. We talked to a young artist, a former Wall Street employee, an out of work contractor, and the leaders of Occupy Judaism who called us sacred clowns and implied we were doing God’s work. (Hear that, abuela?! Estoy haciendo la obra de Dios!) We were exhausted but inspired. We hoofed it straight from the park to the theater (which we’d found and booked less that 48hrs before) without the slightest idea if anyone would show up. But New Yorkers stepped up and every seat in our little theater was filled with friends, strangers, and some of the people we’d talked to moments earlier. So thank you, New York. Thank you for coming to our show, for being the first spark in this growing movement, and for having a Halal food cart on every corner.

You had me at, Halal, New York. You had me at Halal. (Janine makes out with a plate of chicken over rice. Kamau and Nato awkwardly leave the room. Fade to black.)

We fought Fighting Bob Fest in Madison – A blog better late than never

He's passed way more laws than you ever will.

Whew! The tour is finally over! Well, it’s at least half over. We were in five cities in nine days. Seven if you count Nogales twice, since it is both in Mexico AND Arizona. We closed with one of the best shows of the trip in Madison, Wisconsin, where we got a crowd who was definitely, LATM friendly. We spent the day at Fighting Bob Fest, watching speeches by a variety of people from the left push their brand of liberal politics in our faces and then rub our noses in it. Flippin’ socialists! Fighting Bob Fest is basically like Liberalpalooza. It was in a basketball arena filled with progressives, angry about the state of America… but in a good way. Thom Hartmann, Greg Palast, Bernie Saunders, and others. AND BECAUSE NATO AND JANINE HAD TO GET COFFEE WE JUST MISSED CORNEL WEST!!! (No hard feelings at all, of course.)

Now because Fighting Bob Fest is in Wisconsin, it was overwhelmingly white, but because it was a day of progressive team building, it felt like a Tea Party rally minus the fear of others.

As usual, we started off the day with a loose plan: Go to Fighting Bob Fest; pass out flyers for our show that night, & shoot interviews with whoever we could get. Well we managed to finish the day with an overstuffed hard drive of interviews and random interactions. According to Mike and Evan, the filmmakers, they are going to have to buy new hard drives because we are taking up (and talking up) so much space. The only interview we had scheduled was with Peter Rickman, a community and labor organizer from Wisconsin’s AFL-CIO. but while we were walking around the arena, I heard someone shout, “Kamau!” I looked and it was John Hershberger, my number one Facebook friend. John had generously donated to our Kickstarter and we got a few minutes on film with him talking about everything that is going on with the unions in Wisconsin. After we finished and he had walked away I heard him call back to us, “You need to interview him.” And he pointed at a man who I soon found out is the longest serving state legislator in the country, Fred Risser. State Senator Risser very kindly talked to us. And he didn’t seem to be phased by the fact that in the middle of the interview, Nato taped me out, so he could take over with his stentorian tones and aggressive intellect. The best part was when Nato told St. Senator Risser that we learned in Arizona that many of it’s problems are the fault of retirees relocating there from the midwest, State Senator Risser exclaimed, “Hey! Don’t blame Arizona on us!” Thank you for entertaining our questions, Mr. Risser.

That night we did our show at The Bartell Theatre in Madison, and we got OUR crowd. A bunch of liberals and progressives with a senses of humor, who didn’t always agree with us, but didn’t mind us pushing them or us steering them down alleged comedic alleys with dead ends. Afterward we took the advice of Eide Alwan from the mosque in Dearborn and we passed the hat for donations to help us get this crazy documentary finished and the audience politely filled our hat… uh… basket.

Later we went out for some Wisconsin sausage and beer, and gorged ourselves. It is amazing how well it feels like this first week went, and we all anxious and excited to do the second leg of the tour in November. But we are also in desperate need for time to recover. See you all again soon.

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