Chad Daniels

Chad Daniels. 

Provided

Chad Daniels, otherwise known as Dad Chaniels, certainly lives up to his nickname. The Minnesota native broke into the comedy world years ago and has had quite the illustrious career as a comedian, performer and father. Audiences truly get to hear all about it in his comedy, both on tour (Daniels is touring the country this year) and through his stand-up specials on Amazon. Daniels’ latest special, “Dad Chaniels,” is now available for sale on Amazon (will drop on Prime sometime in April), and if you need a guy who says what’s on his mind, is truly a family man and is just all-around hilarious with his outlooks on life — we have found your new favorite comedian. Daniels sat down with Metro to talk about his stand-up, his tour and how being a simple dad from Minnesota has made his life more interesting than you can imagine.

Your website states you are “the most listened-to comic people have never heard of.” For someone who has never heard of you, how would you describe your comedy?

It’s just basically based on my life. Of course, a lot of comedians draw from what happens in their daily life. I just happen to have a different past than everyone else. I live in northern Minnesota. I’ve never lived in New York or Los Angeles. I have two kids and I wanted them to live close to family instead of trying to make it big. So it’s a lot about that, a lot of parenting stuff, which — I know it’s been done and Ray Romano is obviously the king and that’s why they gave him a show and all that. But it’s my unique take on parenting, and now I’m divorced as well so I have the kids at my house with just me, so it’s just life.

How has your comedy changed over time?

 

I think as I’ve gotten older, I’m more willing to listen to other people’s critiques. When I was younger I was full of piss and vinegar and if somebody would say anything about my joke I would defend it right away till the death. But I listen a lot more now. I’ve had people come up to me after shows and they can’t tell if I’m left-leaning or right-leaning, which is great, it’s right on the line. I try to be as honest to my opinions as possible.

Speaking of opinions, does today’s sensitive social climate affect your comedy at all?

I don’t think so, because I try to be sensitive to all of that stuff as well. But also I try to be honest about how I feel about things. The truth is, I’m definitely on the left, I just try to look at it through the eyes of everybody. I think that’s what makes it so funny when you realize either you’re wrong or someone else is so wrong for being stupid. Everyone can kind of laugh at that.

You’re obviously no stranger to performing. You’ve been on Conan and you’ve toured in China, plus you already have a special on Amazon. What would you say have been some high points of your career so far?

I think the high points for me are probably the relationships I’ve made. I used to drive around in my car 18 hours at a time to get to shows, and because of that, you have to trust the bookers and make good relationships. There’s a lot of bookers in this country that I’ve been to their kids’ graduation parties and really tried to solidify those relationships. Also, a real highlight was when my kids were old enough and I could bring them on the road with me. That’s been a blast, to show them these amazing cities that the U.S. has to offer.

You’re on tour this year. What do you like the most about traveling to different cities with your comedy?

First of all, I love seeing new things. Just an example: I brought my daughter to San Francisco maybe the fifth time I had been there, and we hit up all of the things that people would hit up. The Golden Gate Bridge, we did the Bay tour, we went to Ghirardelli’s Chocolate — all of the touristy things. I thought I was really showing her the hot spots of San Francisco. And then my son went with me. There was this big phase for, like, six months where high school kids were playing Pokemon on that app, so he thought it would be thrilling to walk around and get all these Pokemon that no one else had so he could show his girlfriend. I thought it was the dumbest thing in the world but it brought us to parts of San Fransisco that I’d never seen, with this gorgeous architecture and all of this stuff. So seeing new things in a city I’ve been to is always fascinating to me. Then also seeing old friends that I’ve made. I’ve been going to some of these places for 15 years. Getting to see old staff members that come back to the shows, I really enjoy that.

This is something I’ve always wondered. Do you feel different energies with different cities?

Yeah, you can. I would say so. There’s definitely a different cultural vibe. I never change my act for a city that I’m in, but you can definitely feel different areas of the country laugh at different things. Then there are some, like the last time I went to Vancouver, it was tough to do stand-up. Anything you said there was either an eye roll or an audible sigh or something in the room. It was pretty aggravating.

Overall, what can fans expect from your comedy special on Amazon?

What I would love to tell people is, if you want to really get the full experience — it’s kind of like if you watch “Rocky IV” without watching the first three. I would say, go back and listen to the old albums first. You can go back and kind of get to know how I operate and then I think you’ll get more out of it. But it certainly stands alone. This hour was written in the two years during my divorce and then after it, so it’s just basically about me trying to navigate through society as a new single dad. It’s about those two years and having an 18-year-old son at the time and a 14-year-old daughter. Just trying to get through it all.

 

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