Justin Rupple
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Justin Rupple

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Music

The best kept secret in music

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Justin is the winner of Seattle's 2008 Giggles Comedy Club Laugh-Off. After almost three years in standup comedy, Justin Rupple is one of the fastest rising young stars on the comedy scene. He won the Northwest Laugh-Off Competition in 2006, was a semi-finalist in the 2007 Giggles Laugh-Off, and is now the winner of the 2008 Giggles Laugh-Off. J Justin is from Issaquah, Washington, and is a 2001 graduate of Skyline High School. He graduated from Washington State University in 2005 with a BA in Broadcasting and moved to Seattle to work as a producer for KIRO radio, as a news copy writer, as highlight editor for the Seahawks, and as fill-in producer and/or featured guest commentator for the Ron and Don Show, the Dave Ross Show, the Dori Monson Show, and Phil - The News Junkie Show. For six months, he hosted the Mirabeau Room Comedy Night, a collaborative show of 20 comics that also featured short films and sketch and musical comedy, and which was featured in the Seattle Weekly, the Seattle Times, and The Stranger. During the summer of 2007, he produced and headlined his own show at the Mainstage Comedy and Music Club in Seattle which featured open mic comedy segments where various companies competed against each other to see who had the funniest employees. He has traveled throughout the Northwest performing in venues like Slip 45, Vino Bella, Jackson's, and the Beach Hotel, along with hosting, performing, and headlining at Giggles, and has performed in commercials for Old Spice, Chaplain's VW, and Clearwater Spas. His impersonations include the entire male cast of "Family Guy," six characters from "The Simpson's," the male voices from "The Venture Brothers" and "Futurama," and comic scenarios featuring George W. Bush, John McCain, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Patrick Warburton, Christopher Walken, and Sean Connery. He has performed with Bill Burr, Greg Giraldo, Mark Marin, Dana Gould, Kermet Apio, and David Crowe, and has formed a musical comedy duo with John Saxen called Co-Core.... - King 5 News


When I heard that the show was going to be at the Washington Athletic Club, I had visions of a stage being set up on a basketball court and everyone sitting in bleachers. Boy was I wrong. The moment I walked in I had to do a quick outfit check to make sure I was dressed appropriately—at a gym. After some very helpful directions from the doorman (yup, a doorman, at a gym) I made my way to the banquet room where I found hanging chandeliers and tables covered in appetizers. On my way to said room, I did not see one piece of athletic equipment. I don't totally get it, is this a gym or a hotel? - Seattle Weekly


Before meeting Seattle comic Justin Rupple for my lesson on how to effectively tell a good joke, I'm not sure I believed I could ever be funny. I thought that was something you had to be born with, like brown eyes or small feet or a trust fund.

That, the 25-year-old Rupple tells me, is my whole problem—a lack of confidence.

"You have to commit to the joke," he says, "and you can't be afraid of offending people." As the 2008 Giggles Laff Off competition winner (with a couple of performances booked at the U District club this fall), his advice seems worth heeding. He takes his trade seriously. "I'm addicted to comedy," he says.

That I can understand. I remember once, years ago, I made a joke—something about gay being the new black—and the whole table erupted in laughter. It was a feeling I'd never experienced before. I wondered—is this what being funny feels like? I wanted more.

But first let's start with the joke that I brought for this tutorial:

Four nuns die in a bus accident. They go to heaven, and God says, "Confess your sins and you can enter."

The first nun says, "I saw a penis."

God says, "OK, wash out your eyes in the holy water, and you can enter."

The second nun says, "I touched a penis," and God says, "OK, wash your hands in the holy water, and you can enter."

The third nun steps up, but before she can say anything, the fourth nun pushes her out of the way!

God says, "What are you doing?" And the fourth nun says, "I have to go wash my mouth out before she sticks her ass in it!"

My timing is off when I tell the joke, Rupple informs me. I spit out the punch line way too fast. That's probably why I generally sit there smiling and expectantly nodding while my audience forces polite laughter. But that's not going to get me my fix! I need the big laughs!

Fortunately, Rupple tells me, this joke follows the rule of three: Two ordinary things to build the joke up, then a third wacky thing to bring in the laughs.

He demonstrates by retelling the joke in a more animated and active voice. God gains some personality. The fourth nun now washes her mouth out before God has even said anything.

"Use gestures!" Rupple exclaims. He mimes pushing nun #3 out of the way and splashing water in his mouth. There's none of this self-deprecating "Stop me if you've heard this" nonsense to soften the joke. With his new delivery, though I've heard (and told) the punch line many times before, I actually laugh at it.

The two most important aspects of comedy, says Rupple, are timing and confidence—commit, commit, commit! I'm definitely lacking in both departments, but he assures me that they'll develop with more rehearsal.

"I think anyone can learn to be funny," he says, "just like anyone can learn to play basketball. Now that doesn't necessarily make them Shaq, but even he has to practice."

And with enough practice, maybe I'll get to comedy heaven. Hey, St. Peter, have you heard the one about the imam and the tranny hooker...? - Seattle Weekly


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

One of Seattle's biggest comedians, Justin has set the bar for all those who have followed in his footsteps. His versatility and drive for performance has put him as the staple comedian at The Parlour Live, the fastest growing comedy club in Western Washington.

Finishing 4th place finish the finals 2008 Seattle International Comedy Competition Justin Rupple is continuing to take Seattle by storm.

After four years in standup comedy, Justin Rupple is one of the fastest rising young stars on the comedy scene. He won the Northwest Laugh-Off Competition in 2006, and is now the winner of the 2008 Giggles Laugh-Off.

He has been seen in local and national commercial spots for Old Spice and Volkswagen. His mix of stand-up, music and impersonations is unlike anyone else.

He has performed with Bill Bellamy, Bill Burr, Greg Giraldo, Mark Marin, Dana Gould, Kermet Apio, David Crowe, and many others. Justin also performs as the musical comedy duo, Co Core, with John Saxen.