Sean Smith ’04, a stand-up comedian based out of his hometown of Louisville, is releasing his debut comedy album, “You Don’t Look Funny,” on May 31, 2019. Smith has been performing his mostly observational and personal material since 2006 at clubs and college campuses throughout the midwest.
The self-distributed compilation features a diverse collection of 26 tracks, 16 of which feature Smith’s standup comedy, plus four original pieces of musical satire, and six sketches. Titles include, “P2,” a rap song filled with nonsensical catchphrases and surprising punchlines, and “Answer Machine,” a stand-up comedy track about working in a school and the unique voicemail messages he receives as an educator.
“My album is a little different from the stand-up show,” Smith says. “I tried to make the album a full experience, because I figured if I’m going to make a comedy album I need to pull out all the stops. I wanted to make the album my comedic resume.”
Joe Stockton of Thoughtfly Studios is executive producer of the album, which includes appearances by comedians Chris Vittitoe, Eric Kimbrough, Patrick Passafiume and Mandee McKelvey.
Smith has performed with the likes of Nick Cannon and Jay Pharaoh, and is currently host of a biweekly standup series at The Bard’s Town, a restaurant, theatre and pub in Louisville. He also co-hosts the comedy podcast “Bout Time.”
“The podcast is with my friend Patrick Passafiume,” Smith says. “There are plenty of high-minded podcasts out there — some I even enjoy — but we didn’t want to be that. We created it to be a brain break for our listeners and a vehicle for unique creative content. Patrick and I have known each other for about 12 years, so our banter is pretty fast-paced and laden with very silly, fun comedy. We don’t take ourselves too seriously and have a goal of making sure our guests on the podcast have the most fun. If the guests have fun, that will translate to our audience. Our guests have been as famous as Jay Pharoah and Myq Kaplan, and as ordinary as one of Patrick’s college professors. We also occasionally do sketches or characters.”
“”Bagged and Bored” is about characters working in a comic book store and their adventures,” Smith says about the series LEO Weekly described as, ‘locally produced laughs aplenty.’ “The show has a lot of pop culture references based in absurdist humor.
“The premise of “Hell of a Mother In-Law” is that my wife Valerie (played by Jenell Glymph) and I (Wesley) are living in marital bliss until her mother Kim (played by Kim Vaughn) moves in with us unexpectedly,” he continues. “She hates me and wants her daughter to find a new husband.
“”Hench Hunt” is a spoof of reality tv where an evil villain is looking for a main henchman in his quest for world dominance.” It had its premier screening on May 12, 2019 at Kaiju in Louisville.
When he’s not performing, Smith uses his anthropology and sociology education as youth service coordinator at Ballard High School in Louisville. He has a graduate degree in counseling and has completed the training requirements for FRYSC, an AmeriCorps program partnering with the Kentucky Division of Family Resource and Youth Services Centers.
“I choose anthro/soc as a major because they were the classes that made the most sense to me,” Smith explains. “I’ve always understood and had a deep connection for and with people, so the study of human society and cultures and their development was a natural path for me. I joke that I make good use of my degree because a comedian’s main source of material is to observe and comment on the inequities and curiosities of society!
“I found the stage in high school hosting my school’s talent show. I had such a euphoric experience that I only wanted to do hosting again. At Centre I had four amazing years to find myself and what I enjoy, and I took every opportunity I could to host things while I was there. When I graduated, I missed the creative outlet of having a stage to perform on or host. Stand-up comedy was a platformed that offered a stage to me.”
In 2010, Sean won the Louisville Improv Comedy Derby contest, and in 2012 was voted the funniest black comedian in Louisville by The Comedy Caravan. He receive the Kent Carney award for Comedian of the Year in 2014, presented by a Louisville comedic peer review. He started his comedy career as a part of a three-man hip-hop freestyle comedy group called as the Local MCs.
The Bard’s Town will host an album release show with Sean on May 31 at 10 p.m.
by Cindy Long
May 29, 2019