Top 15 Comedians

Liam McEneany

# 4. LIAM MCENEANY

 

Rego Park native Liam McEneany remembers well the night he decided he would first attempt his lifelong dream. Deeply enamored with the comedy of Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby for years, 18-year-old McEneany made the decision on the fly after finishing a family meal.

“It was Mother’s Day, and I had dinner with my family, and then I was like ‘okay, I’m going to try,’” he said.

McEneany jumped on a train downtown, adding his name on the list of performers at experimental performance venue Surf Reality (where fellow Top 15-er Christian Finnegan got his start).

“When you’re 18, everything you feel is heightened,” he said. “I thought, if I’m not good at this thing that’s been a lifelong dream, I’ll never want to do anything else.”

Despite his fears, his first foray into stand-up went surprisingly well.

“It went alright,” he said. “It was a very safe place, there was no heckling aloud, and by the time I got on stage a lot of people were just drunk and high. I wasn’t good, but I knew I had something. It was like a key turning in a lock. Something clicked and I was like okay, this is me.”

Afterwards, McEneany began hitting open mics throughout the city at night while working at a call center during the day. However, without any big prospects after years of work, McEneany says he was on the verge of quitting comedy forever when he got a call from VH1’s pop culture comedy show Best Week Ever. He had won the coveted role of a featured panelist on the show.

Soon McEneany was performing his standup across the country in addition to performing on the show, eventually releasing the comedy album Comedian in 2013. He’s since gone on to dabble in different mediums, including producing a concert film, Tell Your Friends! The Concert Film!, which premiered at the SXSW Film Festival in 2011. He’s also the host of a lauded podcast, “Tell Your Friends! History’s Greatest Podcast!,” which has been singled out by publications like the AV Club.

“The great thing about doing a podcast is it lets you talk to your friends for an hour,” he said. “When your friends are all successful and busy and you’re successful and busy too, it’s hard sometimes to find time.”

Catch McEneany’s concert film, Tell Your Friends! The Concert Film! on Hulu, or his podcast on iTunes. He’ll also be releasing a new comedy special with New Wave Entertainment in the new year.

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Posted by on Dec 30 2015. Filed under It's List, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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