Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Dear Friends and Frenemies:

Welcome to the Fall issue of Delfino’s Diatribe. I write to you just having returned from a 2-month whirlwind tour of Edinburgh, Galway, London, Reading & Leeds Festival and other spots in the UK. It’s been a long 2 months of performing, partying and debauchery.


First stop, Latitude Festival was a wild trip. A field in the middle of England with 30,000 earth conscious people was so much more cool and fun that it sounds like it might be on paper. Stuckey and Murray (and Mrs. Murray) and I traveled there together, and we also ran into NYC pal Jeffrey Lewis and made new friends, as well. Highlights of Latitude were hanging out with Stuckey & the Murrays and getting to see Grace Jones.

After Latitude, I dropped by old London town to do about a week at my beloved Soho Theatre. Jena Friedman accompanied me to London and opened the show. We also made pit stops at the Comedy Store, Soho Comedy Club, Comedy at the Cat, East Room and other spots. We made a great friend in London comedian Tom Webb and even got to hang out with Reggie Watts who’s show followed mine at Soho Theatre. Despite a small bout of food poisoning, I managed to have a wild and fun time. Jena and I shared a room in London and I was surprised how well we got along and how peaceful it was. I haven’t shared a room with anyone since before I got pimples. Highlights in London were having a 10 year old who saw me at Latitude Fest come back and bring his parents to see the Soho show and also recognizing other faces from Latitude who came to see the London show again, meeting Tom Webb, hanging out with Jena, getting to see friends Marisa and Rasp, getting to perform at the world famous Comedy Store, meeting Matt Kirshen, Nick Doody, Glenn Wool and others and hanging out with Reggie Watts in Soho Square on a lovely August afternoon.

Edinburgh was next. If you like exhaustive and intense three to four week long festivals with hundreds of shows a day in every genre, ya gotta go to this fest. Everyone there was drinking and ready and eager to bang. It’s like summer camp for adults / comedians. It’s horny, overcast, busy, bustling and most of all, crazy amounts of fun. Booze was the blood that fueled the monsters (and by monsters I mean comedians) running rampantly through the streets and bars, whether it was an upside down purple cow or some secret hidden away loft bar that you can only get into by sort of sneaking in. I was there for a month, sharing an apt with Ben Lerman and Mike Amato who became my family. We ate all our meals together and commiserated / celebrated each little failure / achievement.

Nothing takes the pain away like a Ben Lerman fritatta

I swore Ben was trying to tell me something the whole time we were there

But I couldn't quite figure out what he was trying to say

I also ran into many, many NYC pals – Carolyn Castiglia, Kristen Schaal and Kurt Branoler, Jamie Kilstein and many, many more, and even got to share the stage with Amanda Palmer and shoot a video for a BBC TV pilot while I was there.

This is not a scene from the BBC pilot, but a street performer in Edinburgh!

Highlights were getting to chat with Janeane Garofalo one afternoon about comedy, climbing to the top of Arthur’s Seat with Ben, Mike, Mike I and others at 4 am to watch a meteor shower and the sunrise, hanging out and taking bike rides with Marshall Cordell, meeting a new friend Nigel and going to see the Supper Room show with him at Assembly Room, seeing comedian Alistair McAlistair or whatever his name is – he was awesome, brunch with Ben and Mike every day and also the one big brunch we had at our place with tons of our favorite comedians and new friends, meeting all the new friends I did and performing my show to standing room only audiences almost every single night. My sweet boyfriend also flew to Edinburgh to meet me (after 5 weeks of tour) for the last week of my trip, and I have never been so happy to see any human being in my life as I was when I turned and saw him standing there with a smile on his face, waiting for me to notice he was right there, watching me.

Alex on a cliff

Next was Galway, Ireland where I was chauffered into the city in a gorgeous Jaguar by the super sweet and friendly Kevin who owns the Roisin Dubh bar I headlined. Highlights included meeting up with Ann Enzminger and Diane O’Debra while there, getting to do 2 great shows, being put up for 2 nights in the lovely venue flat, seeing the Cliffs of Moher and a castle or two and eating tons of fried mushrooms before getting the hell out of there.

Duff Beer!!!


After Galway came Reading and Leeds Festival, the crown jewels of the tour. Reading and Leeds are world famous historic festivals and I was honored and thrilled to be invited to perform at both locations. (It’s a festival so massive it takes place in 2 locations 3 hours apart!) I rented a car and drove on the wrong side of the road. Highlights of the Reading and Leeds festival included performing, simply observing the mad amount of debauchery and craziness, and meeting Roddy, the pianist of Faith No More and getting back stage passes to see Faith No More on the NME stage at both Reading AND Leeds!

I also ran into a few friends, like Stuckey & Murray who also played both festivals, and comedian Vince Fluke, and found new comedian pals who I love now, like Doug Stanhope.

I flew into JFK last night and fell into my own sweet bed with a big, fat, satisfied smile on my face. When I say fat, I mean it – I think I gained 6 pounds completely from fries. Damn they eat a lotta potatoes over there!

Now it’s back to business as usual in NYC. I’ve got some great shows coming right up here in NYC in September.


Thurs, Sept. 3
Variety SHAC
UCB, 307 W. 26th St.
9 PM

Wed, Sept 9
Skits N Tits as part of the HOWL! Festival
308 Bowery
10 PM

Thurs, Sept 10
Stripped Stories with Margot Leitman and Giulia Rozzi
UCB, 307 W. 26th St. NYC
9:30 PM

Sat, Sept 12
Promise of NY
Dixon Place, 161A Christie St.
9 PM
A documentary about some regular folks who run for mayor which I am also in, though I’m not running for mayor. By Raul Alvarez.
TICKETS FOR THIS EVENT: https://www.ovationtix.com/trs/pe/7487155
WATCH THE TRAILER: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PaKCHYRkfo

And coming up in November, I’ll be rockin’ ANT Fest at Ars Nova. Look on the right hand column for more upcoming shows and show details, and for tour pics and a tour journal, scroll down or check the archives of this blog.


My review segment from DrownedInSound.com (Latitude Festival)
Full review of entire Latitude Festival:

The List: Top 5 Free Fringe Shows To See:

The Guardian – Who’s Hot In Comedy:

The Guardian – Are A List Comedians Stealing The Show? (Quick Mention):

Edinburgh Fringe Guru Review:

This Is London Interview:

My show was a Time Out London editor’s pick! A quote from the listing:
“One of the weirdest and best things you’ll see this year”

Galway Advertiser
Proust Questionnaire – To be posted on my blog soon

Galway Enquirer
Lovely color piece - To be posted on my blog soon

If you see any press or photo links, good or bad, please send them to me at jessdelfino@yahoo.com.


I am not sure if I believe in luck -- I had so many great friends and people alongside me and helping to make sure that everything went right on this tour. The least I can do (besides absolutely nothing at all) is to dish out some well-deserved thank yous and good byes.


I’ve gotta toss out a whole lot of honorable mentions to pals who made the tour so much easier and without them, it would absolutely never have gone as smoothly as it did. As always, thanks to the US Catholic League for publicly denouncing me, you guys are the best! I owe so much to you.

Stuckey & Murray and Mrs. Murray, thank you for helping me during my travels to Latitude Festival, Ollie the Octopus, thank you for driving me all the way to London from Latitude, Jena Friedman, thanks for being a great friend and tour mate, thank you to Steve Lock and everyone at Soho Theatre, especially Tom Webb for helping Jena and I feel at home in London, and thank you so much to Marisa Carnesky & Rasp Thorne of Thornesky performer B&B who put Jena and I up and treated us with love and kindness and warm hospitality. If any performers are going to London and need a cheap, clean, beautiful place to stay, let me know and I will pass their info on to you.

Thank you Jennifer Hanson and Gimme Media for having so much faith in me and for being the best publicist a girl could ever want even if I never get to actually see you. Thank you Sarah Solemani for putting me in a taxi and getting me home when I had food poisoning, you are a true friend and I'm so glad I got to see you. Thank you Reggie Watts for carrying my suitcase home when I got sick and for being all around awesome, thank you Mike at Offline in Brixton, thank you Alex Petty, Neal of Jekyll & Hyde and Rob for making my fringe show run smoothly and for all your help, and thank you Alex Todd for all the great pics and the Scottish vocab lessons!

Thank you Marshall Cordell for introducing me to tons of great people and for your terrific advice and friendship, thank you Morgan Spurlock for introducing me to Marshall. Thanks for everything Ben Lerman and Mike Amato, who were my family and support system in Scotland. Thanks Carolyn Castiglia for sticking up for me to the old crazy man. Thanks so much to all the Brown Eyed Boy Production boys especially Gary and Nick Berry who became my chums and who I had a lot of fun with, and especially especially Gary, who I felt kindred to, and who gave me care and first aid when I was stung by a wasp while filming "My Pussy Is Magic" on Arthur's Seat -- magic it may be, but it's not magic enough to keep hostile biting insects away. I still can't wait to see the video!

Thank you Kernan Andrews for help with press whenever I come to Galway, I'm sad I didn't get to see you. Thank you Kevin Healy at Roisin Dubh for taking such great care of my friends and I. Thanks Diane O’Debra and Ann Enzminger for driving to the cliffs and for being a sweet breath of fresh American air, it was so great to spend time with you in Ireland.

Thank you SO SO MUCH Stephanie Clive for being the best artist liason I have ever had the pleasure of being liasoned by, and the sweetest person ever at Latitude Reading and Leeds, also a huge thank you to all the great people at Festival Republic for taking care of every single need and want I had.

Thank you Dad and Fernwood Printing for making my awesome flyers that were so beautiful that every single last one was given away. Thank you Kinka for babysitting my cat.

Thank you Alex M. Smith for your love and help and for traveling across an ocean just to be with me.

And big ups to all the others – you know who you are.


A big shout out to Jenn Warren & Charlotte Hanbury, my new great UK pals, I had so much fun with you two it is WRONG. Thanks for everything to all the great folks at Latitude, Reading and Leeds (esp Latitude) who were amazing! Thanks to Annabel and my Leith FM Radio pals who I still owe a radio ID to, hello and good bye DJ from Latitude – it was great to meet you, see ya next time! If my new 10 year old friend is reading this, you and your 23 year old friend who looks 14 are the greatest frans ever! (Fan is almost an insult once you get to know someone, so I've come up with "fran" -- someone who starts out as a fan and quickly becomes a friend - only time will tell if they become friends or not...but I bet we will stay in touch!)

Hi and bye Amy Dickenson and Matt and Ben from BirmingHAM who I had a great time with. I hope to see you again someday, maybe in Birmingham. David Calvitto, I can’t wait to hang out with you in NYC!. Hi and bye to all the cute kids of that play – Adam and the gang and Rupert. Nigel - it was so great to meet you and to see the Pajama Men. I really enjoyed the times we got to hang out and talk and drink together! Mike I, Stacy Meyer and Anwar thank you for the great cooking and good times, see ya back in NYC. Mike I - thanks for leading us up the hill in the wee hours and for being a tireless, great friend. Jamie Kilstein - see you back in NYC - hope the rest of the festival went well for you.

Roddy and Tim from Faith No More, thanks a bunch for being so cool and not acting too famous to be nice. Hello and good bye to Die Roten Punkt’s Dan and Claire, Glenn Wool, Matt Kirshen, Nick Doody and their awesome and lovely ladies. And a very special thank you to all my new and old friends and fans who came to shows, bought CDs and tee shirts

and underwear that said “My Pussy Is Magic” on them

and bought me drinks and patted my back and dragged me out to drink and made me meals and fed me and loved me and made me feel warm, safe and comfy in a foreign land. Happy Birthday Tanya, I’m glad you got to spend it in such a beautiful place.

Talk to ya soon somewhere, someday again on this little tiny planet, beaches!

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