Bill Squire was taping his Saturday performances for an upcoming album.
We decided to head to Cuyahoga Falls to see why he chose the Funny Stop as his location.
Right away it is easy to tell that this is a comedy club, not a bar. The name probably should've given it away, but even if not, you know it when you walk in. There is one main room with a large stage and everything else is just garnish. The big stage with the chalkboard backdrop is what brings people here. That and Bill Squire.
The owner is Pete. I'm sure he has a last name but he doesn't need one. You say Pete in there and everyone knows exactly who you mean. When we got there we didn't know they were seating people upon arrival so we made a quick restroom stop. When I came out, Pete himself (probably not his last name) was waiting. He had been trying to seat us when we disappeared on him. But he was as friendly as anyone can be and we got a nice table.
The place was pretty packed. Over a hundred people, easily. And at most shows featuring Cleveland comedians, we know a lot of the crowd because they are other comics. Not here. Not at the early show on Saturday night. We didn't see anyone we knew. Bill Squire gets love in Cuyahoga Falls. From strangers.
The host was Jesse Huber from Austintown Ohio. Jesse energized the room right away by challenging an audience member to a Sumo match.
He then theorized that everyone there was on a twenty-first birthday bender.
In his defense, there was some strong initial data to support. He outed the "pot table" and then mocked the sanctity of marriage. He knows how and why to use Tinder. His cat has seen things. Five Guys brings back bad memories for him.
Our featured comic was Adam Minnick from Cincinnati, by way of Australia.
He isn't the religion that you, or his father, may assume. If you see him in a limo, look quickly. His donations have been rejected by homeless people. His Dad kept him somewhat insulated. He has more in common with Michael Jackson than you may think. Not all of his fashion choices were actually choices. But he still rocked it. You would be dazzled at how good he looked. He speaks select Spanish thanks to his new Puerto Rican wife, who is a famous cartoon character. His Tough Mudder t-shirt was somehow racist against Asians. He has a few third-world pastimes but his wife prefers disturbing how-to videos. He wrote a children's book...for adults. His couch needs way more pillows. But at least his bed choices leave him enough money for the finer things. Like sheets.
Bill Squire put on a great show. A good balance of quick to mid-length jokes with a story or two woven in. We aren't going to highlight his jokes from Saturday night here because we have already recently done that. But it was great. Very funny and lots of fun at the same time. Great tempo. A lady towards the middle of the room kept throwing her head back and laughing very hard. The probability of her completely falling backwards added a nice anticipatory tension to the air. She is definitely going to be on the album.
The room was great. The atmosphere was very upbeat. And the sound was nice and clear. People were there for jokes and they got plenty. On a night when the audience laughed well for all performers, they took it up a notch for their headliner.
It should be a really good album.
Best Recorded Performance is a category for the Cleveland Comedy Awards this year so get Bill's album when it is released and let us know what you think!
Speaking of comedy albums and possible award candidates...
We will be highlighting Jim Tews' new album
"I Was In Band" next. It is available now if you want to check it out Click Here. It's way easier than finding him and asking him to recite it for you each time you want to hear it.
All things considered, if Saturday was a typical night at Funny Stop, then we will stop there more often. See what I did there? Classic.
Funny Stop. Comedy Club:
Smith Centre, 1757 State Rd.
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio 44223