A few years ago, I was lucky enough to produce a one hour special for the super talented Dwayne Perkins called Take Notes. (If you want to check it out, it’s on Netflix). It was a fun and great project to work on. That’s why when director/producer Quentin Lee and I were trying to figure out our next project, doing a stand up series featuring Asian Americans made sense. Comedy InvAsian is what came out of those conversations.
Comedy InvAsian, a six-part live stand-up series featuring some of the country’s top Asian American comedians as well as talented newcomers, each performing one-hour specials. Our first season includes Paul Kim, Atsuko Okatsuka, Kevin Yee, Joey Guila, Robin Tran and Amy Hill.
I decided to ask them all 8 questions. Next up is, Joey Guila.
Joey Guila has been featured on VH1, G4 Tech TV, Showtime and was the headliner on The Filipino Kingz Tour. In 2003 he won the regional “Kings Of Comedy Search” competition. Joey also has hosted two TV shows on Myx TV called That’s My Jam & Myx Rated which won a Telly Award.
1. On a scale from 1 to 5, how would you rate your childhood and why? (With 1 being the perfect All-American childhood and 5 being completely and utterly traumatized.)
I would rate my childhood a 2, almost perfect except my Pop was a Playa! Growing up in the 70’s was amazing, I miss eating Chicken Adobo and watching Soul Train.
2. Tell us about the moment you knew you wanted to be a comedian.
When I was 23 I was diagnosed with cancer, while going through treatment I used to watch stand-up comedy and remember how great I felt by just laughing. I told myself when I’m healthy and in remission I would love to pursue comedy and spread healing laughter.
3. How did your parents react?
My Mom was very supportive, she was happy to see me doing what I love. My Dad was like…. you sure you want to be a comedian and not a playa?
4. If you weren’t a comedian/actor, what would you have been?
Probably a chef, I believe food prepared with love is another way of connecting with people.
5. How funny are you in real life?
I enjoy bringing a lil bit of laughter with me where ever I go, to brighten up a stranger’s day is what I love. My fiance calls it flirting when I’m joking with the ladies at Starbucks, but then says its a blessing when we get a free Latte. I guess you can call me the Barista Mac Daddy.
6. This isn’t a question, but a statement. Make me laugh.
Google “Dry Hump”
7. Tell us about your worst troll or heckler and how you responded.
I was asked to donate my time to perform at a hospital, but when I got to the lobby there were four rows of senior citizens and a microphone. They thought they were there for a diabetes support group. The coordinator said, “Today we have a better treat for you, we have Joey.” All I heard was an angry old man yelling, “Who da hell is Joey”… and without thinking I said “Yo Mama.” I felt bad, I gave him a hug after the show and we shared a donut on the down low.
8. What advice would you give to young Asian American comedians?
I would ask them why they wanted to be a comedian or an actor, and if I heard the word “passion” or “happiness” in the answer I would just say continue to do what you love.