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Matt Baker • Interviews from the Inside

2009-03-271Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

Prologue: I’m not exactly sure how they found me, but a few years back (2003 I believe it was) I got a call out of the blue from these guys calling themselves Brothers from Different Mothers asking if I’d come down to Seattle and host the public show for the Seattle Juggling and Footbag Festival. Went down, found Matt and his brother Alex and had a blast with the show. Didn’t end up spending much time hanging out with them as I wanted to get back to my Family, but had a good enough time that when they asked me to be a part of the show the following year I went down and did it all again. Good fun!


Name: Matt Baker
Birthday: Historians place it somewhere around the time of 11/09/1981
Place of Birth: Eugene, Oregon, USA
Started Performing/Working in the Industry: My current show started in 2001, but I started performing in 1999
Discipline: Comedy, Hackysack, and Awkward social moments
Websites: www.differentmothers.com (Show)
www.mattbakercomedy.com (Me)
www.comedyskills.com (My blog)
www.varietyartsforum.com (A project)
www.digitface.com (My art project)
Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/user/comedyskillsdotcom
Venues Worked: Corporate, Cruise, College, and Theatre

Hot 10 Questions

  1. What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream and why? Peanut Butter me up. In 1998 I wrote Ben and Jerry’s a letter and asked them to make chocolate ice cream with peanut butter, and caramel. They said it was an interesting idea, and if enough people asked for it they would make it. Sure enough in 2002, they came out with my recipe, and called it Peanut Butter Me Up. I was shocked to see the name because I was sure they would have gone with my name for it, Bake’s Funk Deluxe.
  2. Name one movie that would make it to your Top 10 all-time great filmsI am going to name two. The first would be La Strada. How can you argue with one of the greatest directors ever, making a film about street performers? My other favorite is the movie Limelight. It is the only movie Charlie Chaplin, and Buster Keaton appeared in together. It is a talkie, but fascinating in the sense that it is sort of the real life story on what caused Chaplin to fade away. Two classics for any film buff/performer.
  3. What was your favorite toy from childhood?
    1. My pee-pee. Boy, we had fun together. It seems like yesterday when we would enjoy long walks down imaginary beaches, and intense wrestling matches.
    2. We were pretty poor as a kid, which forced us to use our imagination. It was hard for me because as a kid I didn’t have a great imagination. I had to pay $10 just to play with my brother’s imaginary friend.
    3. It wasn’t really a toy, but we played a lot of games as kids. My favorite was tag. The only time tag wasn’t fun is when my dad would play. He cheated! Anytime he was it, he got to use his car.
  4. Who were your biggest inspirations when you got started?Being in a comedy/juggling duo I always strived to be like the best in the industry, the Raspyni Brothers. They were like stand up comedians who just happened to be doing cool tricks. Because of them I always strived to be a comedian first, and juggler second. Another inspiration would have to be the Smothers Brothers. Aside from Burns/Allen and Martin/Lewis there was no one who’s onstage banter was better. There straight man goofy man was executed to historical perfection. There simplicity in getting solid laughs really inspired me to establish a rapport with the crowd. Last, my biggest comic influence would be Rodney Dangerfield. The master of the one-liners keeps me laughing today, even though I have heard his material 1,000 times.
  5. From the world of animation what one character do you most identify with or see yourself in?It would have to be Calvin, from Calvin and Hobbes. Calvin sums me up perfectly. An imaginative kid, who does stuff just for the fun of it, has problems with authority and no one seems to understand him.
  6. Name something that scares you.Regrets. I don’t want to look back at my life and wonder “What if?”
  7. Apart from the entertainment industry, name one other job you’ve had.I have only had one other job in my entire life. For two weeks, I worked as a barista at a coffee shop. They fired me because they said, “Coffee wasn’t my forte.” Shortly after my firing I moved to Europe, and played hackysack professionally. If the sitcom I am writing ever gets picked up, I am going to send them the pilot episode, and a thank you card.
  8. What’s something you haven’t done yet that you’d like to try?Catch someone talking about me in another language. Traveling a lot I run into the situation when people assume I don’t speak there language, so they will talk about me while I am standing right there. It’s a safe assumption, because I don’t speak a second language. Although, some day I will catch someone, and I will have a field day!
  9. What’s your least favourite thing about being a performer?It’s hard to have any complaints about being a performer. It is an awesome livelihood and lifestyle. If I had one, it’s the assumption people have that since I am a performer, I like being in front of people. Although, I am fine on stage, it is not something I want to do when I am not working. I like to shy away from the limelight.
  10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?“Matt, you are one funny motherf*#^*&! I love your god jokes.”

The Nugget:

Pick one nugget of wisdom you’ve picked up from your career in Show Business to share with the World.

Here are a few:

  • There is enough work for everyone. Don’t worry about people taking your gigs. Work harder!
  • Be original. It is weak to be a performer and use other people’s material. There is nothing more gratifying then getting laughs and applause for things that are your creations.
  • You are never to good to get feedback. Some of your biggest strides as a performer can be the ability to not be so full of yourself that you can’t accept feedback.
  • Always have a backup plan. Put at least 10% of everything you make away. You never know when you will get hurt or the economy takes a turn for the worst. All you can do is be prepared for that time. 10% will help
  • Be working on something else. Always diversify your interests. Just working on different projects open’s your mind to different things you are not exposing yourself normally.

–Matt Baker


3 Responses to “Matt Baker • Interviews from the Inside”

  1. […] I’ll be heading down to Seattle for a couple of days and I called up my friend Matt Baker to ask if I could crash with him for the two nights that I’ll be in town to take in some of […]

  2. […] Matt Baker and I were shopping for groceries today and because we’re both comedic base entertainers we have a certain joviality and goofiness even in very mundane situations… So we’re in the grocery store looking for a bottle of wine and some food for dinner and the woman in the wine sections comes over all aloof and has this snarky attitude towards us… We’re checking out what bottle to buy based on the labels, which I admit isn’t necessarily the smartest way to do things, but the store clerk at this very chi chi grocery store sort of looks down her nose and goes… […]

  3. […] few weeks ago when I was down in Seattle hanging out with Matt Baker he showed me the nicest looking shaker cups I’d seen in years. The cups are available from […]

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