You may know him for his work alongside an often vulgar, bald, purple man, or for his ability to use music to make us all laugh, but despite his musical talents comedian Sammy J certainly doesn’t see himself as a musician of any kind. “For me comedy was always the main thing and the music came secondly,” says Sammy J. “I realised at school that I could get away with more if I put stuff into songs, so I’ve always treated it like a tool. I treat myself as a thief in the musical world. I just scuttle in and do my thing and then run back out.”
With the help of puppeteer Heath McIvor, Sammy J has become one half of the hilarious duo Sammy J and Randy, but there have been some losses along the way.
“Heath McIvor actually passed away seven years ago, so that’s why I work with Randy now. It was a tough time for everyone, but people didn’t really care much for Heath, he was a horrible man … a selfish bastard actually,” reveals Sammy J.
“Randy was emceeing a comedy night that I was on and we both liked each other’s stuff, but we had no idea that it would become our whole lives. We stare at each other every day and wonder what we are doing working with each other and realise it’s probably because the rest of the world doesn’t want to work with us.”
It’s been a strong partnership ever since, but Randy certainly remembers those early days a little differently.
“The first time we worked together I found him repellent as a human, but the audience seemed to laugh, so we kept doing it,” explains Randy. “I’m pretty much only sticking by him for the financial gain. He has this ability to play music and the thing about musical comedians is they cheat. They don’t actually have to write any funny jokes, they just have to write a song and people feel obligated to clap at the end.”
Despite their often offensive and self-centred personas on stage, both Sammy J and Randy do a lot of great work for charity, like the upcoming Comedy for Karma show in Daylesford.
“This is a fundraiser for the Daylesford Drama School, which does great work, and it’s a pretty sweet line-up,” says Sammy J. “Dave O’Neil is MC, Hannah Gadsby, Randy and I, Anne Edmonds and Xavier Michelides – who are all some of our favourite comics. It’s very exciting, and the fact that it’s in the beautiful town of Daylesford is an extra little bonus.”
The show is just one of many causes both comedians get behind, but Randy reveals there is a reason he does so much charity work.
“I’ve done a lot of horrible things in my life and I do a lot of charity work to try and regain some karma points,” explains Randy. “I think I’m getting close, but the more you can put back in hopefully I won’t be burning in hell for all eternity.”
We may soon be seeing a lot more of Sammy J and Randy, as they reveal the ABC will be airing a brand new show based on the pair’s exploits sometime next year.
“It’s basically with the ABC, and there is not much more to say other than it’s good and we hope people like it. But people will get to see it next year,” says Sammy J.
When&Where: Daylesford Town Hall – October 4
By Zach Broadhurst