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Arts and Entertainment

Greg Fitzsimmons And Friends Laugh Against A Tumor

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Photo Courtesy Greg Fitzsimmons
Taking place this Friday at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre is Laughs for Bald Bryan, a night of top-notch comedy and great music.

The special night is to benefit “Bald Bryan” Bishop, Adam Carolla’s former morning radio complement, who, at 31, is battling an inoperable brain tumor.

The lineup for the nearly-sold out event has been finalized, and it’s gotten even more stacked since LAist took a look it and its host, Adam “Aceman” Carolla. In addition to The Dan Band, SoCal punk legends, Bad Religion, have been added to headline the bill.

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The comedy will be provided by host Adam Carolla, Jimmy Kimmel, Greg Fitzsimmons (LAist Interview,) Dana Gould and Larry Miller. Also, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Joel McHale, and hunky TV handyman, Eric Stromer, will be in the house.

LAist had a chance to chat with Greg Fitzsimmons, the hilarious Venice Beach-based comedian/writer/broadcaster/podcaster, about altruism in comedy, The Adam Carolla Show, and his healthy fear of swine flu.

LAist: What’s been your experience with Bald Bryan?

Greg Fitzsimmons: I know him from going on the [The Adam] Carolla Show a lot over the years. It’s kind of like a family over there [with Adam, Bryan and Teresa Strasser.] Teresa’s amazing, and she’s really the best at what she does.

Adam Carolla told LAist: “I will not leave until everyone who wants a picture gets a picture, and everyone who wants an autograph gets an autograph, and everyone who wants a reach-around gets a reach-around.”

That’s fair.

Bryan Bishop on The Adam Carolla Show // Photo Courtesy Bryan Bishop
How will you please fans on the night?

I’ll talk to Bald Bryan. Maybe.

To me, talking with people after the show, you’re just asking for Swine Flu at that point.

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Dr. Drew’s part of the Laughs For Bald Bryan lineup. He has a new show on VH1, Sex Rehab. Do you have any concern that he’ll whisk you there after the show?

Rehabilitation implies that you’re having a ton of sex and I can categorically state that I’m not qualified for "Sex Rehab" at this point in my life.

What do you think Laughs For Bald Bryan is going to be like?

I’m sure the crowd is going to be amazing. Any time you do any of these kind of benefits, when you’re raising money for a guy who has cancer, you generally don’t get a guy standing up and going: “hey, you suck.” Everyone comes out in a really positive mood.

Plus, people are going to be feeling pretty emotional. That’s not such a bad thing, to see Adam Carolla actually display human emotion. If that happens, we’ll really have done something.

Do you see much else comedy and charity coming together?

I started a foundation years ago for spinal meningitis. I had one of my very close friends suffered and died from it and my kid got it at nine months old. For the last ten years I’ve done a benefit at Town Hall in New York. I always invite my close friends to do it -- like Dave Attell, Colin Quinn, Jon Stewart -- and we sell it out. It really is my favorite night of the year.

Doing stand-up, I don’t think, very few of us ever did it for altruistic reasons -- we were mostly trying to get laid. And now, to have an opportunity to use those skills to raise some money for somebody that you care about is a pretty electric, magic thing.

With comedy being such solo work, what’s it like to come together with other friends for a special show?

You’re all together with people that you like, and that you like to watch, and you’re doing what you love and doing it for a cause that’s close to you. I think it’s going to be a really, really, great night.

When you’re there with your friends doing it, it’s intensified by that amount. You generally don’t see comedians doing nice things.

You’ve got to appreciate your life and you’ve got to appreciate the people around you. It’s a shame that things like this have to happen.

Laughs For Bald Bryan

Friday November 20, 2009

Featuring: Adam Carolla, Jimmy Kimmel, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Joel McHale, Dana Gould, Larry Miller, Eric Stromer, Bad Religion and The Dan Band

Wilshire Ebell Theatre | Neighborhood: Mid Wilshire | 4401 W 8th St | Los Angeles 90005 | (323) 939-0126

Will you laugh for Bald Bryan? Comment Below!

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