My Comedy Hero: Adam Rowe on Bill Burr, Kevin Bridges and Jason Manford
- Brian Donaldson
- 20 November 2018
After a successful Edinburgh Fringe Adam Rowe takes his Undeniable show on tour. The Liverpool stand-up picks two British working-class comics and a rabble-rousing American as his comic idols
The two who made me want to do stand-up in the first place are Jason Manford and Kevin Bridges. They were the two I most identified with. I was a young lad from a council estate in Liverpool, and they were two lads, one from Manchester, one from Glasgow talking about being from a rough background in similar cities. What they were talking about just resonated with me and every joke seemed relatable.
One early joke from Kevin Bridges that sticks out for me was about when you could have Sky in your bedroom but you could only watch what the person downstairs was watching. They were the two comics that made think I could do this as well.
I started at 18 which I do put down to Manford and Bridges because they started at similar ages while everyone I was seeing on TV was quite a bit older. But then the more I've got into comedy and travelled with it, you meet other comedians and find out who they're into. So the stand-up I watch has become a lot more Americanised and I'd say my comedy hero now is Bill Burr.
I watch one of his specials maybe every fortnight. I can put it on as background noise if I'm doing admin and emails and stuff. The more I watch him and the more I listen to him in interviews, I appreciate how much effort goes in to what he does. It would be so easy to watch a Bill Burr special and go 'he's just another angry white man' but there are so many layers to what he does. What I like is that he'll normally say something that 90% of people will disagree with and then he'll do five minutes of stand-up not necessarily making you agree with him, but making you see his point of view. He's a master of that.
Adam Rowe: Undeniable is on tour until Friday 18 January.