Lansing’s got comedy

By Nicole Halvorsen
Taylor Williamson performs at Connxtions Comedy Club this weekend. Courtesy photo.

‘America’s Got Talent’ runner-up comes to Lansing

Thursday, Jan. 16 — Taylor Williamson is telling the story about performing a year ago at a girl’s sweet 16 at her mom’s Korean restaurant.

“It was horrible, it was a bunch of teenagers who didn’t care about me performing,” he said. “I got about $50. My biggest career goal is to never do that again.”

Well, lucky for him, it looks as though he won’t have to — at least not this weekend. The 23-year-old performs four shows this weekend at Connxtions Comedy Club, 2900 N. East St. in Lansing. His shows are 8 p.m. & 10:30 p.m., Friday Jan. 17 and Saturday, Jan. 18.

“I’m really excited to come to Lansing,” he said. “Everyone I’ve met from Michigan is really nice, and I’m excited to meet more nice people. It sounds stupid but it’s true.”

Williamson was on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” where he finished second, making him the second comedian to make it that far on the show. He was also the youngest person to perform on the “Late Late Show” with Craig Ferguson. He has also appeared on MTV’s “TRL,” Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham” and was a semi-finalist on the final season of “Last Comic Standing,” also on NBC.

Williamson said he got his comedic start in high school at 17.

“I was like, the class clown. I got attention for saying inappropriate things and never really got in trouble for it,” he said. “People told me ‘you’re funny, you should be a comedian.’ Most people shouldn’t listen to those people.”

He started out performing at a comedy club in San Diego. He said it was very simple, really.

“I told some jokes and people laughed,” he said. “Then I went back, and they laughed again,” he said. Thus a career was born. Williamson kept returning even when they stopped laughing.

“It’s a crazy thing to go back when no one laughs,” he said. He describes his comedy style as “awkward and off the beaten path.”

“I like when people say I’m the same off stage as I am on stage,” he said. His influences include Mitch Hedberg, Norm Macdonald. and Zach Galifianakis. Williamson says he’d love to have a “bad TV show,” but also hopes for a good one.

“’America’s Got Talent’ opened so many doors,” he said. “It’s really cool, my dreams are already coming true.”

Taylor Williamson

8 p.m. & 10:30 p.m., Jan. 17-18

Connxtions Comedy Club

2900 N. East St., Lansing