Comedy found me: Meet Cathy Boyd

Cathy Boyd is a unique standup comedian, as she came around to standup later in life, though she already sounds like a seasoned pro.

Cathy Boyd is a unique standup comedian, as she came around to standup later in life, though she already sounds like a seasoned pro. 

Boyd has just released a new album, Wise Tracks, and took our comedy questionnaire. Read on and find out more about this comic, and find her new album streaming now.

1. Where do you come from, and what were you like growing up?

I actually grew up south of the border in South Portland, Maine as the third to the youngest of 11 siblings. From Maine I headed to Saint John, New Brunswick and stayed there for 23 years before heading to London, Ontario for 10 and finally landing in Toronto. I've always had to work hard at gaining recognition of any kind, starting with my parents. Being funny helped but I have to admit, humour ran in the family. How could it not when you shared a bedroom with six other people

2. What kind of first impression do you hope to make on audiences when you step on stage?

At my age, first impressions are important. I don't want the audience to think I'm just plain old. Once you remove that stigma, it's the substance of your set that takes over. So, right away, I try to eliminate the obvious. My opening line is, "I'm not your stereotypical comic. I have a car." That seems to do the trick. They're on board!

3. When did you first know you wanted to do comedy? When did you decide it was a career?

I have to say, comedy found me. I was always interested in writing funny, but it wasn't until I did my very first standup routine and heard the audience laughter that I was smitten! That was four years ago and I've never looked back! It's tough making a career of it but then again, it was Edmund Gwenn, who was asked on his death bed how he was doing, and he said, ''Dying is easy, comedy is hard. I agree!

4. What was the greatest moment you've experienced on stage? How about the worst?

Hands down it was winning the Comedian of the North competition in Thunder Bay, Ontario in January, 2019. First of all, I walked away with $2,500! Cha-ching! But the audience was amazing. All of my jokes landed. [The audience] seemed to hang on my every word. It was the best feeling I've ever had fully clothed! I'd have to say, the first year I moved forward in the Prove You're a Comic Competition at Absolute Comedy was a real roller-coaster. Yes, I made the cut from nine contestants to five. But making it beyond that five was brutal. All very good comics and I would peddle my sorry butt home each night wanting to quit comedy after routinely coming in last place.

But it was a good lesson because the following year, I made it to the finals. I didn't win the contest, but I did secure a spot on the roster of Absolute Comedy. So, I didn't lose either!

5. Who are your comedy heroes? Who do you look to for inspiration?

Everyday for me there is a Seinfeld reference. Hands down, Jerry Seinfeld is my comedy hero.  Coming in a close second is Sebastian Maniscalco. I got to see both of them live and enjoyed every minute of it. I'm inspired by so many comics. I was lucky enough to catch Hannah Gadsby at Roy Thomson Hall. She is so clever. Jim Gaffigan cracks me up and we both joke about our families. Bill Burr is another one of my favourites. It's like he's just having a conversation with the audience. That's impressive.

6. What other fellow comics should Canadians know about?

You know, there is so much talent out there. But two of my all time favourites are Darryl Purvis and Mike Storck. So funny and very nice guys. If you get the chance to catch them at Absolute, you will not be disappointed!