First Posted: 11/12/2014
Artie Fletcher, Bob Nelson and Rain Pryor have about as much in common with each other as Amanda Bynes seems to have with stability. Fletcher is an old-school comedian who looks like your stereotypical New York mobster, Nelson is an animated “clown-like” comic whose performances shadow the likes of Red Skelton or the Three Stooges and Pryor is a Black Jew with a new-school comedy approach. The three comics are setting their differences aside to hit the road for a national comedy tour headed for Wisecrackers Comedy Club inside Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre, Friday, Nov. 21 through Sunday, Nov. 23 — and the joke is on you.
“We’re not the Blue Collar Comedy Tour or The Original Kings of Comedy Tour. We present three very different styles of comedy, whereas every other comedy tour features comics with the same style of comedy. What we are doing isn’t being done. Me, Bob and Rain couldn’t be any different from each other,” Fletcher said of “The Jokes On You Comedy Tour”.
As different as the comics may be, they share the harmony found in making others laugh.
“I love making people laugh. I absolutely love it. When someone is laughing, it makes them forget about all of the problems they have for a moment of pure bliss,” Fletcher said.
“[Laughter] hits that sensor in the brain and when it does, we are set free from the crap of life without residue,” Pryor said.
“Life is hard, especially the way the world is now. You can either laugh your way through life or cry. To me, it’s an easy choice,” Nelson added.
With a love for making people laugh, the comics also share the love of making money. According to Fletcher, the reason the tour was assembled is because they were offered a great deal of money.
“We make what most people make in an entire month in just one night,” Fletcher said.
The reason the subject of money is so relevant is because the modern world of comedy strips comics from making a lot of money said Fletcher.
“I’m an old-school comic. I appreciate new-school comedy, though. I am a big fan of people like Amy Shumar and Anthony Jeselnick. I think they’re great. Your average hole-in-the-wall comedy club don’t pay comics well. They’ll sometimes give them a small percentage. That’s why me, Bob and Rain are bringing our comedy to theaters and casinos and we’re saying, ‘hey, the joke’s on you’. That’s where the name of this tour came from,” Fletcher said.
Pryor, the daughter of comic legend Richard Pryor, wanted to do the tour because she loves interacting with audiences and meeting new people.
“The money helps, too. Social security ain’t what it used to be,” Pryor said.
The only female comic featured on tour, Pryor holds her own against Nelson and Fletcher, who she considers to be her “two dads”. As the only woman, Pyror feels no different.
“I think women are coming into their own with comedy. We don’t need validation. We just need gigs. Women have opinions on sex, drugs, politics and pop culture, too. It’s not that men are any funnier than women at making jokes about it. [Women] just have allowed the males to get away with it,” Pryor said.
Whether it’s for the money, for the love of making people laugh or not letting men get away with going on a tour without a female voice, at the end of the day, it’s about the comradery for Nelson.
“You can’t beat the fun we have off stage. Artie Fletcher and Rain Pryor are good company. We have a great time bringing three very different types of comedy to the masses. Three headliners for the price of one,” Nelson said.
The comics will be traveling the country for the next year, and their stop in NEPA has them excited.
“We want to update our fans with our comedy and what we have been up to. Between the three of us, we have over 60 television credits. I have a best-seller out, ‘Comedy on the Road As Seen Through A Comic’s Bloodshot Eyes’. Rain has a new book out called ‘Jokes My Father Never Taught Me’… We all have something new going on and we want to reach new fans. We are looking forward to coming to Wilkes-Barre to do that,” Fletcher said.
No matter what your style of comedy may be, “The Jokes On You Comedy Tour” plans to deliver. Tickets can be purchased at the door before each show set for Thursday, Nov. 20 through Sunday, Nov. 23 at 9 p.m. for $20. Admission can be reserved in advance online at www.wisecrackers.biz.