Jerry Sadowitz, one of the most daring of comic acts is coming to The Epstein next month, join Getintothis’ Del Pike as he looks back on some of his previous crimes.
Following hot on the heels of Liverpool’s Comedy Festival, is Jerry Sadowitz who will be making an appearance at Liverpool’s Epstein Theatre on Oct 5.
He’s been round the block a few times but he can probably still bring a blush to the cheeks of Frankie Boyle. At 56 he’s no spring chicken, but despite a glut of young comedians rushing the comedy scene, Sadowitz continues to fill theatres time and again.
His show is a mixture of blacker than black comedy and incredible sleight of hand magic. Whilst the likes of Russell Howard may attract as many fans for their boyish good looks, Sadowitz cannot be accused of the same crime, with his trademark shock of frizzy black hair, squeezed into a top hat and a grizzled weather-beaten face. Although born in America, his gruff Scottish delivery adds further darkness to his already caustic material.
Sadowitz has been performing since the 80s when his unique selling point was the fact that he was too offensive for TV. regardless of this, he managed to become a recognisable face through exhaustive touring and newspaper coverage for his inflammatory comments. His much-publicised comments accusing Jimmy Saville of being a paedophile led to his 1987 album, Gobshite being withdrawn from sale. If only they’d listened.
The BBC eventually, and somewhat naively took a chance on Sadowitz by granting him a TV series in 1992, The Pall Bearer’s Revue, which featured appearances from The Fall’s Mark E Smith. The show was unsurprisingly offensive, received multiple complaints and has never been repeated since. Sadowitz found his spiritual TV home at the newly launched Channel 5 in 1998, hosting the legendary The People V Jerry Sadowitz show. Despite criticism from the Broadcasting Standards Commission for excessive use of strong language, he returned to the channel in The Jerry Atrick show in 2000.
Sadowitz enjoys shocking his audiences taking aim at just about anyone he chooses. He has been accused of racism and has been criticised over his selection of potential victims (The McCanns and Linda McCartney for starters), but somehow Sadowitz survives. Unafraid of getting naked on stage and famously appearing with little Jerry on show for Esquire in 1998, he is unpredictable to say the least.
Although he dislikes being compared to the likes of Frankie Boyle, Jimmy Carr and even Chubby Brown, he is one of those comedians whose tongue is so firmly in his cheek that he manages to get away with it. He does however take the claims that he has influenced these comedians. Sadowitz has often been given the accolade of being the alternative to alternative comedy throughout the 80s and he has referred to the late Bernard Manning as the good cop to his bad.
Sadowitz has a conscience however and greatly regretted appearing in The Shamen’s iconic 1992 Ebeneezer Goode video, admitted ignorance of the track’s drug references. Sadowitz used this error of judgement as an opportunity to state his position as a non-drug user.
Focussing more on his magic in recent years, Sadowitz still maintains an element of barbed, acidic humour, and this is what we can expect on his current tour, simply entitled Comedian, Magician, Psychopath!
If you think you can handle it, tickets are now on sale via the Epstein box office (Oct 5) with a feast of over 100 comic acts appearing at Liverpool’s Comedy Festival from Sept 25 – Oct 1, see website for details.