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Comedian Gary Gulman on His New Show Born On 3rd Base and How Bruce Springsteen Inspires the Way He Writes Jokes

"I relied on people like Larry David, Lewis Black and other people who made something special later in life"

Gary Gulman Interview
Gary Gulman, photo by Mark Seliger/HBO
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    Gary Gulman loves storytellers. From his early days seeing musicals in suburban Massachusetts to his love for Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan and his detail-heavy, hilarious extended stand-up bits — like his “State Abbreviations” routine that went viral five years ago — Gulman is all about the narration.

    A turning point for the comedian came with his 2019 Judd Apatow-produced HBO special The Great Depresh, which is part stand-up comedy and part documentary. The Great Depresh was a deeply personal, game-changing work from Gulman; it candidly dealt with his mental health struggles and ensuing hospitalization, and signaled Gulman’s arrival as a comic who isn’t afraid to use vulnerability as a strength.

    In return, the special offered fans a new way to connect with him. “People were opening up to me, sharing their stories with me — it was really extraordinary,” Gulman told Consequence by phone in early November.

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    Now, after taking the last year and a half to write his memoir (and many more jokes), Gulman is returning with a new special called Born On 3rd Base, which is set to premiere at Carnegie Hall on November 13th as part of the 2021 New York Comedy Festival. Gulman describes the show as “a lot lighter” than The Great Depresh, but says that it’s similarly “personal and biographical.”

    Meanwhile, Gulman continues to carve more room for himself to be a different kind of comedian — one who prioritizes authenticity, nuance, and kindness.

    Consequence caught up with the comedian to chat about Born On 3rd Base, his success with The Great Depresh, battling the stigma of mental health care, the music of his life, and more. Check out the full Q&A below.


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