Long Island native Jim Breuer will return home on Saturday, April 16, when he bring his signature standup comedy to the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center.
“Last year’s show was one of the best shows I had,” Breuer says of his previous stop at Westhampton. “I love my fans,” he continues, noting that he’s honored when people tell him that they’ve seen him multiple times.
Breuer grew up in Valley Stream. He rose to comedic fame as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, and became known for his recurring role as Goat Boy. He later delved into movies, starring alongside Dave Chappelle as the character Brian in the 1998 cult classic Half Baked. In his stand-up routines, Breuer is widely credited with pioneering heavy-metal comedy. His routines play off the rock world, and he does impersonations of iconic musicians. “I’m there to make you laugh hard, but I’m clean,” he says of his shows.
Not only is Breuer’s comedy family-friendly, it’s family-based. “I hit deeper family issues, whether it’s elderly parents, raising teenage kids or being married,” he says of his material. “I don’t go topical. I don’t go political. It’ll be a good night out where you don’t have to think a lot.” He does, however, “go topical” in a geographic sense when he returns to the Island. “This is the only place in the world where I can do really local stuff,” says Breuer. “I know the culture of the Hamptons; between Nassau County and Suffolk County; North Shore, South Shore. I get it all. It’s in me. [Long Island is] like another child, a brother,” he says of his affinity for his home.
Breuer’s love of the area doesn’t just pertain to geographic stereotypes. He avidly cheers for the New York Mets, who play in nearby Queens. Opening Day of the Mets 2016 season is this weekend, and Breuer says, “I don’t expect anything less than being in the World Series.” Last year, Breuer combined his love of the Mets with his love of comedy by recording post-game videos; and he plans to do that again after every game in 2016. “All 170-plus of them,” says Breuer, emphasizing again that he expects the team to play well beyond the 162-game regular season.
Aside from the Mets, Breuer’s other passion is heavy metal. Underscoring his love of the genre, Breuer will release his first hard rock album, Songs from the Garage, on May 27.
“I grew up in the ’80s listening to bands like Van Halen. To this day when I hear that music, I get excited and it gets me going.” Breuer is a family man with three kids, and he found it hard to balance the role of dad with being a hardcore hard metal fan. “Now that I have a family, I can’t relate to the lyrics,” he says of today’s rock albums. “My life isn’t dreary. It’s great and fun and challenging.”
Instead of waiting for someone to come out with an album for guys like him, Breuer decided to release his own. “To me, the album is hard rock and a little bit of heavy metal with a little bit of a smile. Not a snicker. A smile.” The all-original album is all musical, no stand-up. Rob Caggiano from Volbeat and Anthrax played on and produced the album; and Brian Johnson from AC/DC is featured on two tracks. Reflecting on both his music and his family role, “there’s a song called ‘Raising Teenage Girls.’ I think that explains a lot,” he says.
Album pre-sales will be available at the Westhampton Beach show. “Just don’t miss it,” Breuer says of the routine. “You’re going to be that person that says, ‘darn it; I can’t believe I didn’t go to it.’”
Jim Breuer comes to the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center, 76 Main Street, Westhampton Beach on Saturday, April 16. For tickets and additional information, visit whbpac.org or call 631-288-1500.