My short bio:

I have a new concert film out called The Crowd Work Tour which documents a 2013 tour where I did entire shows without any prepared material. It was filmed in seven west-coast cities, directed by Lance Bangs, and produced by Louis CK. You can download and stream it on for just $5.

I've done standup on TV (Letterman, Conan, Comedy Central) and acted in movies (The Wrestler, Pootie Tang, Wanderlust) and TV shows (Louie, Larry Sanders Show, Flight Of The Conchords).

I'm currently on my FINAL CROWD WORK TOUR with upcoming shows in Dallas, Houston, Austin, Washington, DC, Philadephia, Boston, and Brooklyn. @toddbarry

My Proof:

UPDATE: I have to go! This was fun! Pretty nice of me to do this for two hours! I hope you buy my new special/film on Also, if anyone knows why my Itunes cuts out when I play it through Airport Express, that would be great!

  • Todd

Comments: 334 • Responses: 63  • Date: 

stonedrajproductions42 karma

Do you think it's tougher for a comedian that's "low energy" to start out? It seems like guys do a lot of yelling and moving around get more attention even if they're not that funny...

toddbarry59 karma

It's definitely an advantage to be high energy, but ultimately you want to be yourself. Comedians with forced energy look ridiculous (to me).

frankelheim41 karma

You are famous for asking for free stuff, and the #freestufffortodd hashtag. What is the best or weirdest free stuff you have received?

toddbarry42 karma

Didn't I already answer this one? Maybe it didn't go through. I did the Edinburgh festival years ago. I did a joke about being a germaphobe. After the show a woman approached me and handed me a stack of high-end moist towelettes, the kind that come in scents like Eucalyptus and spearmint, and sell at Whole Foods for $15. I thanked her and made a "joke" about her sending me a case. She sent me 20 bags!

ddelrymple37 karma

What's the story behind that picture you tweet all the time of you and the koala bear

toddbarry44 karma

I filmed something for Comedy Central at the Sydney Zoo years ago. We got to go to this area of the zoo that wasn't open to the public, where they took care of animals that were rescued, and a little more tame than usual. That picture was taken with one of those cardboard disposable cameras that no one uses or needs anymore.

Sweatedfob35 karma

Hey Todd, you're one of my all-time favorite comedians. Were there any moments during the Crowd Work Tour in which you thought "Maybe this isn't a good idea?"

toddbarry33 karma

It's actually been going quite well. There have been definite lulls, but the show usually gets back on track.

pighalf31 karma

Wow!!!!! Todd Barry! Thank you for your comedy. You are (to me at least) one of only a very few comics that make me laugh consistently. Who makes you laugh?

toddbarry35 karma

Thanks and here's partial list: Dave Attell, Doug Stanhope, Patrice O'Neal, Maria Bamford, Sarah Silverman, Louis CK (he funded my special), Andy Kindler, many more who I'll think of later.

highonlifeandpot27 karma

Has Fugazi's drummer thanked you for the $6 idea?

toddbarry39 karma

Yes. I've become friendly with him. He and Ian MacKaye have come to my DC shows.

e8ght26 karma

I've heard mixed things about what the relationship is like among fellow comedians. A lot of people say that because there relatively few of you (compared to other entertainment professions), it's like a family and there's a general air of supportiveness, but then I've heard others say it's very cut throat and back-stabby. What has your experience been?

toddbarry32 karma

I think most comedians are nice and supportive, but there are negative people in every profession.

pamdndr21 karma

What are your thoughts about Stephen Colbert taking over for David Letterman?

toddbarry28 karma

I think he'll be great. He seems he will dive in to the position.

LeviK_KC21 karma

Todd- I bought your special for $5, didn't have the money to cover it in checking apparently, and was charged a $28 NSF fee. Totally worth it.

toddbarry68 karma

I want a piece of that $28. Which bank is it?

sneddo_trainer20 karma

You alright, Todd?

toddbarry41 karma

Yes, broseph. Thanks for checking in.

LeM1stre18 karma

Todd, I saw you open for Louie in AC a few years ago. I knew your name and had seen you in some stuff, but didn't really know your comedy style. When I saw you, I thought you were pretty funny - but we had bigger fish to fry (Mr CK)

However, later on that evening as I thought more about your set, I realized that you actually killed it. Your jokes about the lemon in the water and the phone in the toilet still stand out to me. Not really a question, but you're the only comedian where it's taken a conscious decision by me to reflect back on your set to realize how good you actually were.

toddbarry68 karma

Thanks! This is one of the most eloquent backhanded compliments I've received in a long time. I'm glad you came around! Seriously.

godlesszombie18 karma

Louis CK, Marc Maron and many other successful comedians love to talk a lot about their masturbation habits. When are you gonna give us the scoop on yours?

toddbarry75 karma

Hey! Who told you it involves a scoop?

thexhumanxman17 karma

Todd, do you still get nervous sometimes before a really big show?

toddbarry28 karma

Definitely. I kind of hate when I hear a performer who says they "never get nervous." I just don't believe that.

bigfrogs16 karma

Can you talk about what working on Dr. Katz was like? Jonathan Katz seems like he would be hilarious to work with.

toddbarry26 karma

Jonathan is super hilarious and nice, and I got to improvise a lot of the script (mainly as Todd, The Video Store Clerk), and they were nice enough to give me a writing credit.

frankelheim15 karma

You're famous for being a huge enthusiast of frequent flier miles. If I only fly once a year, and always economy, should I feel bad about never signing up for an airline loyalty program?

toddbarry21 karma

Sign up! Those miles add up!!!

whitey_560015 karma

Todd, here's a Sophie's Choice if there ever was one: Blue Bottle, Stumptown, or Intelligentsia?

toddbarry15 karma

Oh man, I like all three of those.

ReefaManiack42o15 karma

could you explain Borrowing Saffron for me? I didn't get it...

toddbarry22 karma

I don't get it, either.

itsdeuce14 karma

Hello Mr. Barry,

I have a couple of questions:

  1. Will you ever return to Portland after dealing with the crazy drunk woman in your Crowd Work film?

  2. How do you really feel about comedian Brendon Walsh?

toddbarry24 karma

That drunk woman was just drunk and enthusiastic. I'd still come back to Portland. Brendon Walsh is a good guy (please don't tell him I said that).

godlesszombie14 karma

You're never political in your comedy. Do you pay attention/hold strong political views personally?

toddbarry32 karma

I have views, but I think if you're going to do political material, you have to know your stuff inside and out, or you look like a dummy.

herr_spiegel14 karma

If you weren't busy being my favorite comedian, what other profession would you choose?

toddbarry36 karma

Being your SECOND favorite comedian. Awwwww.

nowaythisisdan13 karma

any tips for somone trying to get in? Also do you watch SNL? Big fan btw.

toddbarry21 karma

Where are you trying to get in? A hot nightclub? Can't help you. Comedy? Write some jokes, find an open mic night to tell them. Repeat that for many years. I watch SNL sometimes, but usually I'm working (yes, I know I can DVR it.

pameladouve13 karma

Will you only be answering questions from verified Reddit users?

toddbarry27 karma

You can get a verified reddit account?!!!

LeviK_KC13 karma

How much did it cost to make the special?

toddbarry18 karma

Louie paid for it, so it would be up to him to reveal that figure.

rowej18212 karma

What kind of drum set up do you have?

toddbarry26 karma

I have a red Pearl wood/fiberglass set sitting in a storage unit it Florida.

leroyjenkins6912 karma

What would you say is your most significant achievement?

toddbarry50 karma

148 upvotes as we speak!

klobbermang12 karma

Do you like Todd Glass? Are you the best Todd comedian?

toddbarry27 karma

Everyone likes Todd Glass, but I'm the best Todd comedian.

estrtshffl12 karma

Do you have a history in improv that you drew on to do this tour or is crowd work on stage, alone, a different entity than group based improvisation?

toddbarry23 karma

I believe I've only done improv once. It's not easy!

Lukardo11 karma

Hi man! What does it take to get you to do a stand up gig in Finland?

toddbarry20 karma

Contact my agent!

Underthefigtree9 karma

Hey Todd, I'm Jeremy. I was in the front row of your crowd work show at Theatre99 in Charleston. You were great. I wanted you to know that my girlfriend is sorry for yelling at you. She thought you were insulting me by telling me "one year of doing comedy is nothing" so she yelled "HE'S ACTUALLY REALLY FUNNY!" Anyway, she's sorry. Also, you made fun of everyone's job but when I told you I worked with the mentally disabled you only said "you do good work" and moved on. Do you usually refuse to make fun of those kinds of jobs when you do crowd work?

toddbarry43 karma

First I forgive your girlfriend. I didn't take her reaction as hostile. Yeah, I didn't want to go down a shitty path by making fun of your job. I'm a great guy.

TyrannosaurusOfLove9 karma

Love you dude! What joke has been the biggest bomb of your career?

toddbarry18 karma

I can tell you love me because you're asking for a bomb story. I've had a few! My second appearance on Conan did not go very well.

thataintrightt8 karma

Love the new special! What kind of preparation did you do for the tour? Were you ever tempted to bust out a bit or two just to keep the show going?

PS come back to Denver!

toddbarry15 karma

I never busted out a bit. There wasn't really a lot of preparation, because there's really nothing to prepare. You just have to make sure the sound and lighting are good. I'll come back to Denver!

HelguDiGelgu7 karma

What's your stand on normcore?

toddbarry14 karma

I had to look that up. It seems I'm the king of that movement!

ReferencesStella7 karma

Hey Todd. How much of your material actually makes it into one of your sets? I'd love to know how many potential "white tile bathroom" jokes we've missed out on over the years

toddbarry13 karma

If I stop doing a joke, it's probably because it's bad. You probably haven't missed anything.

whitey_56007 karma

What was it like working on the Larry Sanders show?

toddbarry19 karma

Really fun, and kind of surreal. I remember Garry Shandling coming up to me after we filmed a take. He had a note for me, but made a point of saying "only do this if you think it's funny." I was impressed by that.

Alfonso_X_of_Castile7 karma

What's the most you've ever paid for a pour-over coffee?

toddbarry18 karma

Between $4-5?

GuyWhatAxesQuestions7 karma

Do you have a writing routine, and/or a system for capturing ideas when you're on the go?

toddbarry12 karma

I try to sit down and write, but I don't do that a lot. I tend to think of an idea, then work it out on stage. But I should do more homework.

guinos666 karma

How much tougher and how involved were you in editing your Crowd Work special? I'd imagine it was harder to pick the material that would go into the special than a regular special where you have a certain amount of material that you've worked on as opposed to the crowd work format where you probably had seven completely different shows with all different material. I know that was a run-on sentence kind of but you're an incredible genius, so I'm sure you can figure out what I'm asking.

Also thanks for opening for Louis in Pittsburgh last year. That was such an awesome surprise.

toddbarry8 karma

I actually spent many hours in the editing room with Gina Sansom (the editor). It was a lot to sift through, especially since there was offstage footage to deal with, too. I remember that Pittsburgh show. That theater was ridiculously great.

domuseid6 karma

How working with Pootie ?

toddbarry14 karma

You don't know about the feud between me and Pootie?

sheikyerboutiii6 karma

Hey Todd, since you like free stuff and I like free stuff what say you flip the script and send me something for free? It can be anything you want. Money, baseball cards, voicemail greeting, what ever. I'm not a too particular.

toddbarry12 karma

Watch your mailbox.

godlesszombie6 karma

Are you a big reader? If so, what do you enjoy to read?

toddbarry12 karma

I went to a book store yesterday and bought a copy of Harper's. Does that answer your question? I wish I read more than I do, but I think I have ADD. I read a good book about comedy called "I"m Dying Up Here."

GhostDadTheWhip5 karma

Your 'Receipts bit' on your website was and still is a favorite. Maybe with the mooolah generated by this movie you can buy more stuff and build up a pool of receipts to work from again. Or did you retire Receipt Comedy from your toolbox?
Thanks, Todd!!

toddbarry12 karma

I know, I haven't updated that in years. I want to, but I sort of don't want to. I can't do it all, GhostDadTheWhip!!!!

elpantalla5 karma

Hey Todd! You are definitely one of my favorite comedians of all time. When can we expect another written album or special?

Also, how do you feel about R.E.M.?

toddbarry13 karma

I don't know when I'll have a new written hour. I love REM! I drove 12 hours to see them in 1984. And there's a picture of me Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and my friend Rich on my website!

jerkdamaged5 karma

todd, you're one of the few (relative) comedians in new york with a podcast. why did you decide to do it?

why does every comedian in l.a. have a podcast but fewer do in new york?

toddbarry10 karma

I decided to do it because it seemed easy enough to start. But it's kind of a grind booking guests. I do enjoy the conversations, though.

BagelDave5 karma

What places did you visit in Raleigh during the tour, if any?

toddbarry8 karma

I didn't have a lot of time to visit. I went to a bar/restaurant a few doors down from Kings. I forgot the name. I was sad I didn't get a chance to go to Poole's Diner.

NikoSnow5 karma

What are some of your favorite cities that you toured and why?

toddbarry11 karma

Another partial list: Toronto, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Melbourne, London. I just like these cities!!!!

eccentric_smencil5 karma

Was doing crowd work always a part of your act? If not, what made you decide to start incorporating it?

toddbarry7 karma

I can't remember when I started doing it, but I've been mixing it in for a while.

estrtshffl5 karma

What do you say to people who say that crowd work is done just to eat up time and is the easiest thing to do as a comedian?

toddbarry30 karma

I didn't realize it was easy.

bungpeice5 karma

Hi Todd, Do you ever listen to The Bone Zone, why did you insult Brendon Walsh on twitter.

edit: bitchn'

toddbarry8 karma

I've never listened to it. I insult Brendon because it's enjoyable. He likes it, too

lastsolfaa5 karma

One of my favourite pieces of yours is the tutorial on how to fill up your soap dispenser. Absolutely next level. Are you still experimenting with material for youtube?

toddbarry10 karma

I'd like to do something more ambitious than the video you mentioned, but haven't gotten around to it!

stephenreay4 karma

As a foreigner (Australian) living in Thailand, your joke about being a middle-aged guy going on holiday to Thailand alone always cracks me up. Have you actually been here? Did you like it? Would you ever consider doing a show here?

toddbarry8 karma

I've always wanted to go to Thailand! I don't how I'd do a show there, but I'd definitely go there on vacation.

hootrum4 karma

How did you hook up with Mates of State and start playing drums for them?

toddbarry9 karma

I think I met them at a wedding? It turned out they were CRAZED FANS of mine. I did a little tour with them, and muscled my way behind the drum kit.

bhsurfer4 karma

Hey Todd, you were talking on Maron's podcast about not having any shows in St. Louis for the last few years. Any ideas as to why?

toddbarry7 karma

There are a lot of cities out there. I've played St. Louis several times. I'm sure I'll be back.

AskAboutTACOS4 karma

If all you could eat was tacos, how many tacos would you eat at one time?

toddbarry16 karma

I had three yesterday. That was the recommended number at the restaurant I was at.

undead_funk4 karma

Todd, you are one of my favorite comedians ever! When are you going to get your own show?

toddbarry9 karma

Thanks! I don't know when I'll get my own show! Maybe sometime soon?

mamaOrama4 karma

Why are southern legs of comedy tours usually the last?

toddbarry10 karma

The last show in my tour is in Brooklyn.

flac_id3 karma

you recently said some kind words about Detroit on your recent WTF appearance. Thanks for that. What can I do to ensure more great comics come here and go to the appropriate venues?

toddbarry9 karma

Maybe reach out the venues and have them reach out to the comedians. Most of us have booking agents, so it's pretty easy of them to make that happen.

LeviK_KC3 karma

Are you planning to release the audio/video from your current crowd work tour?

toddbarry7 karma

I haven't been filming them. I think one crowd work special from me is enough.

goborage3 karma

If an unfunny person wanted to become funnier, what would your advice be for them?

toddbarry9 karma

Take my online comedy course.

Kknowsbest3 karma

Who was your role model growing up?

toddbarry13 karma

Louis CK.

sjeffiesjeff3 karma

You were great on Louie. Did Louis CK write that part for you or did you just improvise? I thought it was very typically Todd Barry.

toddbarry23 karma

You're asking if Louis wrote the part of "Todd Barry" for me?

beanieman543 karma

Can you BELIEVE Chipotle was started by McDonalds? Outrageous

toddbarry10 karma

I watched a documentary on Chipotle on Netflix. Turns out McDonald's didn't start it, but they did give them $350,000,000.

temptingtime3 karma

Todd, so great to see you do this, you are my favorite comedian.

Are you close friends with Louie and Hannibal in real life? Do you just shoot the shit or compare material?

How long did it take you in comedy to realize "this life isn't so hard anymore"? In other words, when did you first feel you finally "made it"?

Will you please share your sugar cookie/crystal meth recipe with me?

I fucking love you man, I wish I had more time to think of better questions.

toddbarry9 karma

I am friends with Louie and Hannibal! We definitely shoot the shit more than we compare material.

davedemois2 karma

Hi, Todd. I do a lot of those shitty EastVille shows on the weeknights. What are you looking at on your blackberry before you go on? You seem very focused.

toddbarry7 karma

I keep my comedy notes on that thing! And I don't use a Blackberry anymore.