Stand-Up Comedian Barry Crimmins

Barry Crimmins

Born: July 3, 1953
Blue Meter: Risqué

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Next Tour Date

Friday | July 28
8:00 PM

See all Barry Crimmins's tour dates



1991Kill the Messenger
1988Strange Bedfellows: Comedy and Politics

Features multiple comedians

Specials (and other video)

2016Barry Crimmins: Whatever Threatens You

Special to be released via Louis CK's Website. Also directed by CK.

2015Call Me Lucky

Documentary about the comic's life, directed by Bobcat Goldthwait

2005When Stand Up Stood Out

Documentary about the beginnings of the Boston Comedy scene.

1986The Young Comedians All-Star Reunion

Books (by and about)

2004Never Shake Hands with a War Criminal


Hi everybody, Barry Crimmins here. You may not have heard of me. I’m OK with that. Really. I may not have heard of you although I’m sure you’re a lovely person but this is my bio so let’s focus on me.

I’m the subject of Bobcat Goldthwait’s Sundance-debuted, critically-acclaimed and award-winning documentary, Call Me Lucky, now streaming on Netflix all over the world.

Call Me Lucky has been written about glowingly in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Variety, the Boston Globe and Rolling Stone plus about ten dozen other notable publications. If you go to you can catch up on most of that stuff. It’s also available on my website

If you’re a podcast person you can check out my appearances on WTF with Marc Maron, The Joe Rogan Experience, The Greg Fitzsimmons Show,The Dana Gould Hour and Reply All. And many, many more, because you know how to Google, right?

Like radio? How about Fresh Air? Or the Bennington Show or Opie and Jim? Been there, done them.

Many people seem to be impressed with my story which I am now being asked to tell again here. OK,why not?

I grew up in Skaneateles, NY. I went on to note as the founder of the Ding Ho Comedy Club in Cambridge (Ma) and Stitches in Boston. I produced shows. I performed in them. I helped many great comics by treating them decently and encouraging originality. Their names are all over the press about the movie. They are in the movie. They are great comics and greater friends.

I have done concert tours with Jackson Browne, Billy Bragg, Dar Williams, Michelle Shocked, Utah Phillips and my dear, dear pals Steven Wright and Bill Morrissey.  I opened for Warren Zevon 9 times.

I was a good friend and confidante of the late Bill Hicks. He would endorse me had he not been stolen from us so early.

I am noted as a political satirist as well as a political and social activist. I’ve failed to stop all the major wars—and the minor ones, too. My career was greatly augmented by the guidance I received from the late preeminent historian Howard Zinn, who was a very dear friend. Even Kurt Vonnegut was kind to, and supportive of, me. I appeared on C-SPAN with him. We had a lot of laughs. So it went.

Mobilization for Survival presented me with the Peace Leadership Award in 1991, the year the Gulf Wars began. There was very little competition for it that year. Noam Chomsky presented it to me. I received the Courage of Conscience Award from the Peace Abbey in Massachusetts on the same day it was presented to Dr. Maya Angelou. Howard Zinn handed me that statue, which is kind of a left-wing Heisman Trophy. But who cares? I was never on a sitcom so some people haven’t heard of me and think I’ve been somehow cheated. They are wrong. I got to hang around with a zillion great comics, tremendous musicians, and remarkable thinkers and doers. I’ve gotten to perform thousands of times before audiences in North and Central America and Europe. I haven’t had to have a real job since the 70’s. It makes me smile to type that.

I have written for TV and radio - The Dennis Miller Show, an ACE-nominated Kevin Meaney HBO special and all kinds of stuff at Air America Radio where I was a senior writer, producer and correspondent. I was a contributor to the Boston Phoenix for 20 years.

I appeared on the HBO Young Comedians Special (in my final year of eligibility!) , The Smothers Brothers last go-round on CBS, all the network nightly news shows and CNN and MSNBC numerous times. I’ve appeared on a dozen or so nationally syndicated comedy shows.

I authored a book of essays for 7 Stories Press called “Never Shake Hands With a War Criminal” My new book for 7 Stories is due out in 2016.

I am noted for disclosing that I was was raped as a young boy. I have no problem discussing this in public because I was a crime victim and have no shame about being in that unfortunately large club. After disclosing, I went on to expose rampant child pornography trading on America OnLine before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee in 1995 — not a bad room if you can ever play it. I thumped the massive corporation’s high-priced mouthpiece and shamed them into a zero tolerance policy concerning the heinous crime of trading photographic evidence of children being exploited, sexually assaulted and/or raped.It’s all in Bobcat’s movie. Some people call me a hero for this. I don’t think of myself as a hero. A legend, sure but I’m no hero. I suppose I needn’t point out my great humility.

I’m a funny, smart,  andpoignant comic. Really. I know how to do my job. My message is always smuggled in large amounts of wit. Laughing people can’t defend themselves. Most of my recent dates have resulted in uproarious laughter and ended with standing ovations.

I’m thrilled to be represented by APA.

OK that’s enough. I hope you’ll come see me in a lovely venue near you because my job is a lot less fun if no one’s there. Either way, thanks for considering me.

— Barry Crimmins