He may act like he just swallowed an entire pharmacy, but give
Mitch Hedberg a chance and he just might make you squeal with
After a breakthrough performance on the “Late Show with David
Letterman” in 1996, Hedberg’s career and fan following has grown
every year. His DVD/CD “Mitch All Together” has sold more than
70,000 copies and is becoming a frequently quoted album among
college communities across the country.
Hedberg’s success comes in part from his public persona as a
laid-back, stoner who jokes about maintaining his drug supply
through an unwitting FedEx deliveryman.
The Collegian caught up with Hedberg during his 28-city tour,
which stops Saturday in Denver at the Fillmore Auditorium, and he
spoke about his rise to fame, his plans for the future and dealing
with his stalker, Queen Latifah.
The Collegian: You’ve come a long way since your comedy
beginning back in Seattle. What do you attribute your success
Mitch Hedberg: Awww man … I don’t want to be cocky but …
being funny. (Mitch laughs at himself). Na, what it really comes
down to is a half-hour special on Comedy Central that they played
the s**t out of. That helped me more than anything else. I’ve been
on the David Letterman show 10 times, I’ve been on Conan twice and
I’ve been on Jimmy Kimmel but nobody mentions any of these shows as
much as that Comedy Central thing. It pretty much made my career.
Also, I’d have to thank the Internet because a lot of people
downloaded stuff and that helps out.
C: Now that you’re a celebrity and things are going so well,
what’s changed most about your life? I mean, I like to think that
you’ve gone from eating stale Doritos to eating cr�me
MH: The biggest change (pause) I guess things are just easier.
I’d like to come up with some crazy and decadent answer but for the
most part, it’s gotten kind of lucrative so things are a bit easier
for me. I can fulfill dreams that I’ve had for a long time so I’m
fortunate because that means I end up doing a bunch of s**t that an
8-year-old could be doing. I think the biggest change is that I do
things like give my little sister $100 just like my uncle used to
slip me $5 when I was a kid. Just financial freedom. Now,
celebrity-wise, I’m not too big but I get just the right amount of
recognition, like, occasionally I have to worry about things like
something stuck between my teeth.
C: Do you ever miss playing shows for more intimate crowds?
MH: You know, I don’t want to jinx myself and say yeah, but I’d
have to say yeah. I used to play clubs where the Sunday show would
be really mellow with 30 to 50 people compared to the weekends
where it would be pretty full with like 250 or 300 people and it
was always really chill. I could just lay back and not worry so
much. But now you go on Sunday and it’s pretty much sold out and
there’s all this pressure to do good. The nice thing about a
smaller crowd is you can just relax for them and I miss that a
C: Are you planning on expanding your career further into the
film industry (Hedberg produced, wrote and directed “Los
Enchiladas!” which premiered at the 1999 Sundance Film
MH: Yeah man, I’m planning on it big time. I got a little burned
on my first foray into the film. I spent a lot of money on the film
and it kind of got a luke-warm reception. It was a comedy you know,
and as a comedian I’m used to going on stage and if people don’t
laugh I can fix s**t. But I couldn’t fix that film. It’s kinda
tough to ask a crowd, “Wait while I edit this.” Do you know what I
would really love, is if some big director saw me and wanted to
work with me, because that hasn’t happened yet. I always hope that
some director is going to say, “That’s the guy,” but it hasn’t yet
so right now people look at me and say, “Hey, he might be one of
C: When you’re out on the town with your friends, would you
consider yourself a good wingman?
MH: Yeah. Real good actually. Just the other night this girl
called up to my hotel room and she was like, “I really like you and
my friend really likes Randy.” Randy was the other act on the show
that night but unfortunately Randy had left town so I called him
and told him, “Randy, you really f**ked up tonight cause I was
gonna be your wingman.” But I’m a great wingman. Back when I was
single and I was on the road, me and another comedian would go out
and hook up with a couple girls and bring them back to the condo
and it was amazing, man.
C: So what do you look for in women?
MH: I think someone who just listens to you basically. If I’m at
a bar, that’s always been a hard place for me to meet women. I’m
not real good with the initial conversation, you know? So I look
for women who look for me. It’d be like a hunter who only hunts
dogs because they let him pet them. I also love, on the more
superficial side, I guess I just like (pause) women who are
C: I see that your national tour culminates in December. What
are planning to do once that happens?
MH: Ah man, well first of all, I gotta finish my community
service. Na, I just got to start getting ready for the next tour.
The tour never really ends for me cause I want to get back to the
clubs. My last tour was with Dave Attell and Lewis Black, this
one’s with Steven Lynch, so maybe the next time I can go off solo
and just have an opening act that’s a friend of mine or something.
I also want to try to nail an HBO special and maybe try to get
Queen Latifah to stop making calls to my house.
C: I have the same problem, man.
MH: I knew someone else did.
C: It’s the thin white man – she loves it I guess.
C: OK, based strictly off of my voice, do you think you could
MH: No. You sound like a man who can be pretty aggressive when
it comes to the liquor. Plus you’ve got the advantage of being in
college so you’re in training right now. I mean, you’re constantly
training. It’s like you’re always practicing, man. See, I only
practice when I’m working so right now with this tour I only work
three nights a week at the max. The last tour went from Tuesday to
Sunday so the only day you could probably out-drink me would be
C: I know you have a show down in Denver on Saturday but I
understand you have to leave Vegas to come here.
MH: I know, doesn’t that suck? I wanted to spend more time in
Vegas. I mean, I love Denver too, but let’s face it man, there
isn’t any f**king gambling. Is there?
C: No, you won’t be able to gamble, that’s true.
MH: But you know what? My road manager is from Denver so he’s
gonna be exited about … Hey, that was sexy. (Mitch is apparently
interrupted by his wife at this point) My wife came up to me
topless. It was awesome. (Resuming his response) But Vegas is great
man. Do you like it there?
C: Yeah, but I always get into trouble out there.
MH: Me too, man.
C: And I’m not rich like you so I can’t afford it.
MH: I’m not rich man. Don’t get me wrong. That comment about the
money was by no means me saying, “Hey I’m a rich f**ker.”
C: I’m just busting your balls, Mitch.
MH: (laughter) You know what I’m saying.
C: I’m looking forward to seeing you at the Fillmore. I’ll throw
my bra on stage for you.