Paul Snodgrass started doing stand-up comedy after he finished his degree at UCT where he majored in Drama, English and History. Known for his 'rant comedy', his focus is more on social commentary than commercial humour. Rolling Stone caught up with him to chat about comedy, music and his duties as MC at the Rolling Stone Weekend.
Where has the road taken you so far?
I have a weekly radio show, doing comedy shows and acting. Right now I think I'm an actor-comedian, but if you'd asked me this last year it would have been the other way round. I've just finished a comedy film with comedians Rob Van Vuuren and Colin Moss – its different to most SA films, called Casting Me.
What's your philosophy when emceeing a music event?
Be as loud to the audience as you want them to be back at you. You can't be polite to a rock audience.
What do you find special about Rolling Stone Weekend?
It's not the same handful of bands that always get booked for everything. A lot of these bands, Mystics and Lucy Kruger for example, are about to get big – there needs to be an outlet for young bands to do this, that is the beauty of Rolling Stone Weekend.
How do you feel about the bands that have been selected to perform?
They're great! I've heard of and seen most of them perform already. Also, there's a nice eclectic mix of the genres on offer, blues, rock, indie, electric. But most importantly, these bands are getting the exposure they should be getting. They work hard, they're good, and they deserve to be showcased under the banner of Rolling Stone.
How do you think Rolling Stone's going to change the local music industry?
In South Africa we go through this phase where we seem to only identify five bands as being worth seeing, as being the only bands doing great work. Rolling Stone Weekend will show Cape Town a whole new group of artists.
Tells us about your experience with comedy in South Africa.
South Africa is growing up with me - I couldn't have done the comedy I'm doing now when I started. The public still does want a more commercial style, and that's what most comics are giving them – but they are definitely more open to public commentary, more open to gritty honesty.
What are the parallels between comedy and music?
Like music, there are several different genres of comedy – and people seem to forget this. For a guy who is an angry comic, my style works well with rock 'n' roll. I'm an indie rock 'n' roll kid.
You can see Paul Snodgrass at the Mercury and Shack complex hosting the Rolling Stone Weekend between 14 and 16 September in Cape Town. Here's 4 of the other acts, another 4, 4 more and the DJ's that will also be performing at Rolling Stone Weekend.