LIKE ALL modern comedic friendships, Ryan Sickler and Jay Larson's began in LA comedy clubs and soon evolved into podcast form. Their weekly show, The CrabFeast, finds the pair and a guest trading hilarious tales from their often-checkered pasts. Since both gents will be here this week to do stand-up at the August installment of Funny Over Everything, we leapt at the chance to grill them about their relationship and podcast.
MERCURY: When you two met, was it an instantaneous friendship?
JAY LARSON: I think so. I can't remember a time when I didn't get along with Ryan. I go through stretches with some comedians where I fucking hate them. But that's normal. I'm sure a lot of people probably feel that way about me, right, Ry?
RYAN SICKLER: [laughs] I'm sure people do.
LARSON: We complement each other very well. We both come from middle-class backgrounds... well, I do. Ry's background is very white trash.
SICKLER: We weren't white trash. Maybe circumstantially white trash, but well-educated white trash.
How did that friendship evolve into doing The CrabFeast?
LARSON: I put that all on Ry. He had a podcast going and his co-host left to go to New York, so he asked me to take it over. I wasn't sure how much time I had and I was already thinking of doing my own podcast. He had such a vision for it that I decided I wasn't even going to try to start my own.
SICKLER: I knew about his ability to tell stories, so I asked him to just sit in for a bit to get his legs under him. I knew once he did, he wasn't going to leave.
You emphasize storytelling on your podcast; whose stories have surprised you the most?
SICKLER: When we had [comedian] Ms. Pat on, I wasn't that surprised by what she brought to the table, but her stories were crazy. Being pregnant at 14. Getting shot, in her words, "in the titty." She's been shot in the head. It blew me away, not only sitting and talking about it but also being able to put a funny spin on it.
Do you find the podcast influencing your work onstage now?
LARSON: We have the podcast to fuel our stand-up. I see Ry doing stories onstage that he told on the podcast and they get stronger and stronger every time he tells them. It's refreshing to see because honestly his joke writing isn't that great.