Foreign comedian Alfred Kainga has done his research
In the wake of American comedian Mike Epps' recent headlining bomb on the island, local comedian Chris 'Johnny' Daley is steadily pressing along the path to integrating stand-up comedy culture into regular recreational programming in Jamaica.
The upcoming second instalment of Johnny's Comedy Bar Special Showcase will feature popular comedians Fancy Cat, Curley, Leighton Smith, Chris Daley, Dufton Shepherd, and television host and actress Dahlia Harris.
Also billed to perform, is Zimbabwean-American comedian Alfred Kainga.
"Let's not use one show by one big name act to broad-brush foreign comedians. Most foreign comedians are professionals who work all the time. I am quite sure that our comedians are going to tear up the place. He's very excited to come to Jamaica, and he is going to prove once again that big names doesn't mean that you're funny," Daley told The Gleaner.
Kainga said that although this is his first trip to the island, he feels like he is coming home.
Last September, he travelled to Zimbabwe to perform for the first time in 18 years. "It's the same thing Jamaica is like going back home. We have an amazing Jamaican influence, especially the music. There is the love of the music and the culture. We were just vibing with it. When I was 18 - my first club was a dancehall club. Coming to Jamaica has been in my heart for so long - it's is like a fulfilment. I can't wait," he said.
Daley feels assured that Kainga's reception will be phenomenal. He used the first instalment of the Comedy Bar Special Showcase which featured American comedian Shuler King, as an example. "Nobody knew of him in Jamaica, and he destroyed the show. Every body went home giving praise about Shuler King. In fact, they want to see him come back again," he said.
Kainga is similarly confident that he is prepared, and that his two performances on the island will cause a ruckus. He said, "It's easy for me because I understand the culture. I have Jamaican friends, I was raised on the music. I'm checking out newspapers and tabloids. I can't tell you what I've seen right now, but I'm gonna get into it. There's also that crazy relationship between Jamaicans and Africans, so it's gonna be very interesting. As an artist, I want to make sure I make the audience love it and they get what they came for."
Kainga was a finalist in the Shaq All Star Comedy Competition, and also a finalist in the Funniest Comic in Texas Competition in 2014. He has also been part of Kevin Hart's successful Hart of the City Tour series for Comedy Central.
Johnny Daley's Comedy Bar Special Showcase will take place at 100 Hope Road in Kingston on November 13, and also at 100 in Montego Bay on November 15.