FAMED for his rock ‘n’ roll style and slow Canadian drawl, comic Tom Stade is back with his modestly titled Tom Stade Totally Rocks tour.
Following a sell-out debut UK tour last year, plus appearances on Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, Live at the Apollo and Dave’s One Night Stand, you could forgive the stand-up for feeling a little cocky.
But the real reason behind his latest tour name is surprisingly sweet.
“Tom Stade Totally Rocks ‘cause I married a girl in Vegas after three months and we’re still together 17 goddam years later,” he explains. “I find that I try to live life to the fullest and if that’s what they mean by rock and roll, I wouldn’t have had it any other way.”
Stade said he knew, even at an early age, he would be a comic. “Even when I was seven, my mum would say stop doing your stand-up routines,” he reveals. “And I’d say, ‘I want to be a stand-up comedian. Now get out of my way before I slap you with this plastic chicken’.
“My father was quite easily one of the funniest men I knew growing up. He listened to a lot of comedy albums so I got to listen to Richard Pryor, Lily Tomlin...”
The stand-up emigrated from Canada to Wolverhampton several years ago and his material, particularly his famous ‘meat van’ skit, was an instant hit on the UK comedy circuit.
“Before I moved here, I didn’t know what to think,” he says. “It was a friend that told me to come over and that they would love me over here.
“I did some ten minute guest spots and they booked me for seven months in advance which is unheard of in Canada.
“So we decided to come over and give it a shot. It was a comedy of errors. Nobody ever sits there and says ‘I have a great idea, let’s move to the ghetto.’ But when we get back there, we’ll have a really, really good time in Wolverhampton.”
Now living in Scotland, simply because they couldn’t find anything but a six month lease for the Edinburgh Festival, the real turning point in Stade’s career came after an appearance on Michael McIntyre’s prime time show.
“That was definitely the break that changed everything,” he says. “Everyone thinks it was an overnight success but it was a culmination of a bunch of years.”
But if you think you know the comic from his TV appearances, think again...
“You have to be ‘BBC’ when you’re on there. When you come to a live show, you get to be a little bit more naughty.”
Tom Stade is at the Birmingham Glee Club on Wednesday, May 1.