I’m a comedian and writer who first came here in 1959. I was three. Truth is I had it with being treated like a baby, so I packed my toys, told the parents what they could do with their rules and split my crib for the left coast. After all, that’s what we show-bizzers do. The family eventually drifts westward bound, not necessarily reaching for the brass ring; more like being in the vicinity. My family moved to Beverly Hills and I grew up in showbiz central. Comedy Division.
My first professional job was a TV commercial for “White Front” department stores. I know, sounds like a nationalist movement, but the “Front” store chain had color coded stores throughout the nation. I think in the south it was Red Front, or Red NECK Front; don’t remember. I was enrolled in acting school and was often startled by how much the entertainment industry was infused into the local culture. Beverly Hills was a village of 1920’s buildings and one would often see the likes of Lucille Ball buying chicken at the local butchers or Groucho Marx going into Nate N Al’s Deli. It was a way of life and because of it, I became a lifer. In showbiz forever. Flash-forward from when I started at The Store in 81 to today and there are hundreds and hundreds of really good (and some great) stand-up comedians, all vying for that Netflix special.
A newbee to Hollywood is a young Cuban American comedian, actor and entertainer from Chicago. William Martinez has that one thing you must have to succeed big-time. He’s got talent and training, but William also has charisma. It’s hard to define what charisma really is, but JFK had it, George Clooney has it and Jesus Christ himself had it. Not surprisingly because the word “charisma” means “Christ-like.”
I first met William at The Improv and frankly, I first thought he was a bit too anxious to make friends. Truth is he sensed something about me immediately that made him want to know me and once he found out I’m a so-called “legend”, simply because my name is on the wall of fame of The Comedy Store, well; the young comics are basically in awe that I was there in the day and am still around. I’ve worked with William many times and he’s always a crowd pleaser, funny and professional. I’m telling you, this guy can do anything. And his impressions are spot-on.
So, let me get this straight. He’s talented and professional and good-looking and joyful and entertaining and young. I hate him already.
Catch William Martinez at all the major comedy clubs in LA or at a comedy club near you.
For The Hollywood Dog,
This is Steven Alan Green