Comedy in San Marcos: Interview with Jason Johnson

todayAugust 10, 2023 42

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By Diego Gonzales

Blog Content Contributor

Jason Johnson is a stand-up comedian who has been performing in the San Marcos scene for nearly eight years. Johnson is a sharp writer and talented performer, who has entertained crowds all over with stories of his time in the air force, his family, and living in Texas. His style and stage presence is immediately welcoming and paired with his explicit humor it results in a comedian that reminds you of your favorite crazy uncle.

I had an opportunity to interview Johnson and talk about his career and the growing San Marcos comedy scene.

Comedian Jason Johnson is holding a microphone and cigarette while performing standup comedy.
Comedian Jason Johnson performing standup. | @jajohn5985 on Instagram

Gonzales: How did you get started doing stand-up?

Johnson: It’s been a dream since I was in 5th grade. I loved it, I loved watching specials when I was a kid, and I was always kind of the funny guy around. Everyone would tell me “You need to go on a stage and do this.” Finally, I had a friend of mine who was getting divorced. I said “No, you’re not getting divorced,” and she said, “I’ll tell you what, if I come in with signed divorce papers, you have to go to an open mic.” And sure enough, she came with signed divorce papers, and I went to an open mic, and I ain’t stopped since.

Gonzales: When did you start doing stand-up in San Marcos?

Johnson: I’ve been here pretty much from the start of me doing it. I started in Florida which was my last duty station in the military, but I only did it for about probably six months there before I got a job here and moved. It’s been a little over eight years now since I came here and got involved in the scene.

Gonzales: What do you think about the San Marcos comedy scene?

Johnson: I love this scene as it is because it’s like a family. We’re not here to say, “Oh, you need to quit. You don’t need to follow your dreams,” or anything like that. We want to help you. We want to push you forward and teach you the rules of the game before you do go to places like Austin or San Antonio where you may encounter those kinds of people. Plus, we’re dead in the middle of both those cities so we can go to either one, and you get a huge taste of different audiences, different types of people and different types of comedy.

Gonzales: How has competing in the Funniest Person in Austin competition been going for you?

Johnson: I’ve been doing Funniest Person in Austin for years now, and this year I finally made it through to the next round. I had one goal: to make it through one round. I don’t care if I make it through the rest, but I just wanted one show to say “Yep, okay, you get to go on,” and I did it. But now that I have done it — Jack Neil put it best when he said, “Just remember it’s like Kobe said, ‘it ain’t over yet!’” So it has kinda fired me up, like maybe I can try to win this thing.

Gonzales: Speaking of Austin, what do you think about how the city’s stand-up scene has been booming over the last few years?

Johnson: Oh, I think it’s awesome. I love it. I love all of the new opportunity there is. I think it also has that quality of being steel-sharpen-steel. You’re around a lot of good comedians, and you’re watching them, and it makes you want to be better because you want to stand out amongst these people. So I think it’s wonderful. I love how it’s the new place to be as far as comedy goes.

Gonzales: Any final things to say about the San Marcos scene or stand-up in general?

Johnson: Come out to an open mic, try it out. You never know when you might be the next person who just falls in love with this and wants to do it, and we’ll definitely try to foster an environment where you can thrive in. Other than that though, check out the shows if you don’t want to do it yourself. Check out these local comedians. They’re fantastic. Support local comedy.

Written by: Preethi Mangadu

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