“I love Pittsburgh, I’m very fond of it. WAMO went out of business and a lot of entertainers don’t come to Pittsburgh, but I love Pittsburgh so much that I wanted to take on the financial responsibility of coming there. I love Pittsburgh because of the down home of it. It embodies who we are as a race. Pittsburghers work hard and they don’t need material things to make them who they are,” said the 48 year old whose real name is Nathaniel Stroman.
The funnyman entertained Pittsburgh audiences for three nights—Jan. 15-17—at the Pittsburgh Improv, located at 166 E. Bridge St. in Homestead.
Although he brought his straightforward blend of comedy to the Steel City about three years ago, he promised that this act would include fresh material guaranteed to make people laugh.
“There’s no comedian on this earth that’s giving material that is so relevant and delivered as quick as I do,” Earthquake said. “I try to put my comedy that way. My comedy is up front and it stays with you,” he said. “My act is about being relatable to people and showing them what the problems in society are.”
His witty one-liners had American audiences hooked since he came on the comedy scene in the early 1990s.
Born in Washington, D.C., Earthquake got his start in comedy after leaving the United States Air Force, which he joined the day after he graduated from high school. His 11-year military career ended during the Gulf War after he refused to fight in the war against Iraq.
After leaving the service, Earthquake moved to Atlanta and began seeing a psychiatrist. That’s when he realized that comedy would be a better outlet for his problems than popping pills and paying a doctor.
“In my humble opinion, I don’t think that someone can handle your problems because they looked in books. How do you give someone a pill to end their problems? I’d rather take to the stage and put my problems out to the audience and we talk out the problems together,” said Earthquake who lives in Los Angeles.
That’s exactly what Earthquake began doing.
He started cutting his comedic teeth in small clubs in Atlanta. By 1993 he was performing at the Uptown Comedy Corner in Atlanta’s entertainment district. Four years later, Earthquake’s big break came when he landed a spot on the Russell Simmons Def Comedy Jam Tour. He got his famous moniker because Earthquake was easier to say than his real name.
From there, he began getting more exposure by getting his own one-hour “Comic View” special. That’s when he started landing movie and television roles. Some of those roles include “Getting Played” starring Vivica Fox, “Clerks II” and “The Longshots.”
Most recently he had a three-year recurring role as Uncle Mike on “Everybody Hates Chris.” The show went off the air last year but can be seen in syndication.
“Everybody Hates Chris” is seen more in syndication than it did when it was on television and only one channel. I liked playing Uncle Mike and I do miss the camaraderie of the cast. But acting is a hard thing. You’re there for 18 hours and playing so many characters you don’t get the chance to work on who you are,” he said.
Earthquake is currently developing his own show and will release a comedy special next month. People who love his impeccable comedic timing on film can see the comic in several movies set for release sometime this year.
“I’m blessed to live in a great country where God has given me a talent that I can take care of my family on my own natural ability,” he said. “I tell people who want to break into this business to be original and remember that you got into the business to make people laugh.”
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