I chose Fitzdog Radio this week as it is very similar to my review from last week (shameless plug), and I wanted to show how a contrast in styles of the host can produce a much different listener experience. While his show is also played on Sirius/XM Radio, it still keeps it’s podcast/pirate radio feel, mainly due to it’s host.
Greg Fitzsimmons is a long-time, stand-up comedian from New York City. He started in comedy in the late 1980s, and I first really discovered him through Joe Rogan’s podcast. I had seen Fitzsimmons a few times on Comedy Central before that, and always liked his style and fearless approach to comedy.
Fitzsimmons has a laid back, casual approach to his interviews, but also has an edge to him, but he’ll be the first to admit that. He likes confrontation and often gets into fights, although, he is working on this issue. I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting him, however, I feel like he would be the type to come off as a jerk, but if I spent 10 minutes around him I’d be an even bigger fan.
This is a pretty simple, straightforward show. Fitzsimmons doesn’t do much, if any, of an intro. Usually he reads an ad then it is right into the interview. He is heavy on the comedian side of things when it comes to guests, which isn’t shocking. However, I feel like he gets a lot more lesser-known, or often looked over comedians. I’ve found a lot of people I enjoy and follow-up on I find from this show. Most recently, Andrew Santino, from episode 609.
Fitzsimmons does a good job mixing up the guests though. He’s had actor Michael Chiklis, writer/director John Hamburg, Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys, and even dedicated an episode to his friend Kevin Meaney, who had recently passed away. Fitzsimmons isn’t scared to do what he wants, and it makes for a genuine show.
One of the advantages to his style of comedy, and interviewing, is the aforementioned “edge” he has. While his interview with Jesse Ventura was very civil and professional, he did not back down on his own beliefs and position on things. It made for an amazing listen, and even made me a bit tense at times.
Each interview is different, and seems to fit the guest. If Fitzsimmons has a long relationship with the guest, it shows. If some major world events have happened, Fitzsimmons will break that down with his guest. It allows for a lot of fluidity and some great conversations.
While Fitzsimmons might not be a great interviewer, and I’m not saying he’s a bad one by any means, I actually prefer his style over others. It’s like eavesdropping on a conversation, and while he might not have a wall of degrees, he is very insightful on a lot of topics.
Fitzsimmons still finds humor in any subject, so I don’t want to paint this podcast as being rigid and serious. His almost 30 years in comedy is very prevalent, and his jokes are on-target no matter the topic. While I don’t have time to listen to every episode, I like Fitzdog Radio as an escape. I often listen to episodes of people I haven’t heard before, because I know I will walk away with a smile.