An unfiltered post-gig interview with Australian comedian Amos Gill: now based in the US he explains why he left, why he’s gone off doing festivals and where he stands on left-leaning stand-up comedy

“Soft-left politics with a dick joke to get a clap.” – Amos Gill on his general view about the state of Australian stand-up comedy.

This very frank and open interview with comedian Amos Gill was conducted immediately after his 7pm gig on Friday 15 July 2022 at The Comics Lounge, North Melbourne. The 400+ venue was packed and in the palm of Gill’s hand throughout an extended 70-minute performance.

At 31, Gill is one of Australia’s leading stand-up acts, though his taste for edgy, often tasteless takes about culture, society and himself has, he feels, put him at odds with the “soft left” tone of much of Australian live comedy.

He explains here why he left Australia, his association with Australian comedian Jim Jefferies – also based in the US and a huge name – and what he thinks of the Australian live-comedy scene.

Apologies for the scratchy quality of the first minute of audio. It improves after that.

Also – and this is embarrassing – the interview was all tweaked and edited and ready to be published about a week after the gig on 15 July. Alas, it was discovered sitting in the drafts queue, where it had been patiently waiting to be noticed. So added apologies for that.

Please enjoy.

Amos Gill interview index

00:00 Setting the table;
00:40 How did the show go?;
01:00 Why he left Australia for America:
01:30 Favourite acts are American;
02:00 Reacted against self-censoring;
02:20 How Americans regard stand-up comedy compared to here;
02:25 Springfield, Missouri;
03:00 Of Australia: “It’s just not in the bones of the nation to love stand-up outside of the festival”;
03:30 Support from Jim Jefferies; industry reaction;
04:40 Moving to America;
05:00 “Soft-left politics with a dick joke to get a clap”;
05:45 “Don’t you think the same stuff keeps being pushed out?”;
06:00 Woke attitudes; trans issue in comedy;
06:50 “I think stand-up comedy is about addressing the demons inside you and society”;
07:40 Power of the internet for non-woke comedians;
08:00 The importance of context;
08:30 Virtue signalling vs genuine empathy;
09:10 Where is he going with comedy?;
09:45 Grey’s Anatomy audition;
10:00 Length of shows;
11:00 Boomer humour;
11:50 Being on the road counters complacency;
12:10 Difference between American and local reaction;
12:50 Context issue; two types of people;
14:05 “I’ve always preferred inclusion through mocking”;
15:40 Does he believe in a comedy god?
16:40 pre-show psyche routine;
17:10 Being off-the-radar at MICF;
17:40 Welcome to Country fatigue;
18:00 Still calls MICF award The Barry;
20:00 “I’m always angry at the Festival”;
20:15 “I don’t wanna do festivals anymore, really”;
20:50 Internet empowering acts to do their own thing;
21:38 Future visits;
22:55 Dave Chappelle and cancel culture;