“Caution. Caution. There is a problem with the Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant. The beach is closed. Leave the beach immediately and turn on the radio for more information.”
Most coastal residents panicked when they heard this false emergency alarm go off on loudspeakers in July. Juston McKinney has won the Gold Award for Comedy at her ‘A Year in Review 2022’ special, which opens at her The Music Hall in Portsmouth on December 26th.
McKinney, who grew up in Portsmouth and Kittery, is a nationally known observational comic, appearing on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and Conan O’Brien’s Late Show, as well as being featured on Comedy Central and Amazon Prime. “On The Bright Side” already has hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube.
As it has done every year since 2009, McKinney has created an all-new “Year in Review” show for 2022.
“It’s a completely different show every year,” McKinney said. “It’s a very stressful bed that I made for myself.”
On opening night, December 26th, he will try out some new material that may or may not be cut for his subsequent show at the Music Hall on December 27th.th28th or 29th Or at the Rex Theater in Manchester on December 30th and 31st.
“I practice a lot on stage,” McKinney said. “If you say it once, never say it again. It’s just a matter of how you feel that night. This show[The Music Hall]started as one show and now we’re doing four shows. I hope people look forward to it.” I’ve grown to a point where they’re happy, so I have to put out a good product and make sure they leave happy.”
Juston McKinney’s father’s alcoholism is a great source of material
McKinney grew up in a notoriously dysfunctional household on the coast. His mother died while he was attending Little His Harbor Primary School in Portsmouth. His father, Perry, was already a heavy drinker and continued to drink for decades.
“My father was a homeless alcoholic for years and will be 15 in April,” McKinney told the audience at “On the Bright Side” at the Capitol Center for the Arts in Concord. I spoke. “Yeah, I’m very proud of my father. He actually lived in a toilet in a parking lot in Portsmouth. And he was always positive. I got a place with a garage that can accommodate 100 cars.”
McKinney’s aunt moved in with the family after her mother died and soon slept in the same bed as her father.
“‘On the bright side, if I were to marry one of your aunts, I’d rather have your mother’s sister than mine,'” McKinney said to his father. That was the last time we talked about it.”
“My father always told me to look on the bright side. It can always get worse,” McKinney jokes. “The stock market and people’s 401(k)s always make things worse.” I had a buddy and he had all his money in Fidelity and he lost 25% of his investment I had another buddy and he was unfaithful He lost 50% of his investment.”
How Juston McKinney Makes a Comedy Show
McKinney got his start in comedy with open mic nights in Boston and New York City. He’s still working on new material with open mics at places like his The Winner’s Circle in Salisbury, Massachusetts.
“It’s just observing something that happens in my life and I think, ‘What’s wrong with this?’ where should i take this? Throw it on stage and see where it goes. ”
On the day this reporter visited this house in Newmarket, McKinney joked around the dining room table that his wife’s sister had to return to Barney and Phil’s furniture store because she was “too white.” was Did she ever say that about him? He also joked and played about his wife’s work Christmas looking forward to his party for the first time.
As a child, McKinney said he wasn’t the clown in the class he was sent to the office, but realized he could say things that made his teachers laugh. When I grow up, I want to be a comedian,” he said, “everyone laughed.”
“Wow, this is easy,” I said. That was the first laugh I got. ”
Prior to doing comedy full-time, he spent seven years as a Deputy Sheriff in York County, Maine, working on “Country Patrol.” He and another lieutenant were in charge of 14 towns with no police stations of their own, covering an area of 500 square miles.
“The crime was difficult to solve,” he said.
While working as a lieutenant, he did an open mic at the Stitches Comedy Club in Boston. But he did so well that he came back six months later, filling the room with Portsmouth his Kittery his area friends.
“It didn’t work. Absolutely. I’m just unnecessarily swearing because I’m just trying to make you laugh. It’s a bit of a crutch when you start. As I walk off the stage, the host walks into the mic. and teasing me for dropping so many F-bombs, I’m just shocked, but I also think, “This can’t be my last show.” ”
Confident, McKinney chose to stop using profanity and work cleanly. This works well in theaters where he performs in New England, as families often bring teenagers to shows.
“I’m not as pretty as Seinfeld next door is pretty,” McKinney said. “I’m like a PG-13.”
Why Juston McKinney’s wife doesn’t care about jokes about her
Since much of McKinney’s material derives from his real life, or at least exaggerated versions of his real life, his family features prominently in his act. is the focus of many of the jokes.
“Do you know what[my wife]does at work? Human resources. Human resources,” McKinney said in “On the Bright Side.” “It’s the absolute worst job for a comedian to get married. Every joke I bounce at her is like she’s (making her face) like, ‘I don’t know about it. I’m not going there.’ I can’t say that anymore.”
“She works from home and when I try to flirt with her, she says, ‘That’s workplace harassment.'”
McKinney’s two sons, ages 12 and 15, also come to his shows for gentle humor, but always with love. To avoid, I chose to work closer to my New England home.
“I value being able to take them to school,” McKinney said.
Does his wife sometimes reject jokes?
“I’m good at knowing when I’ve crossed the line,” McKinney said. “There are things the audience will never hear.”
There are practical reasons for his jokes to stay focused on himself and his family.
“She would rather have me tease her than do something that would get me canceled,” McKinney said. “Because she needs to make a living.”
Seriously, McKinney urges everyone who comes to his shows to buy tickets directly from the theater and not from ticket scalpers who charge exorbitant prices.
“My most expensive ticket is $41,” McKinney said. “He doesn’t want to sit there thinking he’s getting $150 in value. I want him to feel good about getting $41 in value.
And the joke about the Seabrook station misinformation? Those alone are worth the price of admission.