Funny accountant was as much of an oxymoron as underexposed Hilton until former CPA John Garrett hit the comedy clubs and launched his first independent release stand-up comedy CD Outside the Box.

This is good stuff. John Garrett is funny, different, and his material, even the Wal Mart stuff, is original. In fact, I wish Outside the Box was longer so I could enjoy more of Garrett’s comedy. Guess I’ll have to wait until the next release.

Rather that than a stand-up who milks his topics to death. Not getting every possible laugh out of a topic is probably the strong and weak point of Outside the Box, the comedy CD by John Garrett: the material is really funny but he sometimes moves on perhaps a bit too quickly to the next bit. I really wish he had spent a little bit more time on the slow cooker routine, his experiences as an accountant, or, being Canadian, Glacier Season.

Then again, knowing when to stop is a tool that many more seasoned stand-up comics do not possess and Garrett already has it. Small Town USA is just fine as it is and so is the McRib bit which is not my favorite but still good, funny stuff.

Another thing I really like about Outside the Box by John Garrett is how the material is put together. Garrett knows he starts out strong just mentioning he was a CPA, nobody expects that of a comic, and he builds dork background in Marching Band and the next few tracks. Only once he has shown he has a sense of humor about himself does he move on to more general digs at Shreveport, Louisiana, NASCAR fans, and, of course, dumb people.

The one thing I liked less about this comedy CD, and it is a thing I dislike when any comic does it, is Garrett tends to point out moments when the audience does not laugh enough at a joke. He may be right about that a couple of times but in the end, the audience is always right. As an audience member, I find it uselessly aggressive and that it kills the mood more than the comics realize.

I also have to hand it to John Garrett when it comes to design and packaging. Outside the Box looks good and I really like the LP look of the CD. I am not sure he has achieved the feel of the classic comedy albums of the sixties and seventies he refers to in the liner notes but I am sure this is solid, original stuff.

Outside The Box
John Garrett
Stand-up Comedy CD
Independent Release 2007
31 Minutes

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