Before a live audience in Chicago in 2007, the ultra-wry comedian Michael Ian Black remembered his 2006 appearance at the Parish at House of Blues: "I know they've been through a tragedy in New Orleans. I'm aware of that. But even victims can be f—ing assholes."
Maybe New Orleans hadn't yet acquired live comedy etiquette, instead greeting the rare touring comic with a typically smoky, noisy, chit-chatty club (same goes for touring rock bands). Perhaps we've learned our manners — last year, comic Paul F. Tompkins brought his tour to New Orleans, and Kevin Hart and Kyle Kinane stopped here last spring.
Louis C.K. (pictured), fresh from the second season finale of his brilliant FX series Louie, performs at the Mahalia Jackson Theater on Oct. 6. As a writer, C.K. has worked for Dana Carvey, David Letterman, Conan O'Brien and Chris Rock on their respective shows, and his standup credits — relying on his dark, often gross, weird and brilliant storytelling — include the Emmy-nominated Chewed Up and Sundance Film Festival standout Hilarious. He's a revered "comic's comic," topping dozens of "best comics ever" lists, more so in the past year than during his career's previous 20 years combined — fueled by the two seasons of the critically acclaimed Louie, which earned him a 2011 Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.
Other incoming acts include the Scotch-throated, cigar-smoking Ron White — the Blue Collar Comedy Tour veteran seemingly in on the joke — who performs the following night on Oct. 7 at the Mahalia. Breakout comedy star Loni Love stops at Harrah's Casino on Nov. 18.
Baltimore electronic musician Dan Deacon brings his experimental sketch- and video-based Wham City Comedy Tour to the Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center on Nov. 3, a week before New Orleans Comedy Week (Nov. 9-12), hosted by Austin, Texas-based improv group The New Movement. The group, founded by comedians Chris Trew and Tami Nelson, has a second home in New Orleans where it performs regularly and offers improv classes.