by MIKE CHAIKEN
Jim Breuer clearly is a fan of the New York Mets.
His social media accounts are peppered with all sorts of videos and comments about the Amazings.
Although the comedian’s favorite team is sitting out the October classic, Breuer still was pretty stoked about this year’s match-up between two perennial also-rans, the Cleveland Indians and the Chicago Cubs.
Breuer, who was calling from his home in New Jersey, “I’m really excited.”
“I’m a diehard (baseball) fan,” said Breuer.
“I’m rooting for the Cubs,” said Breuer. “I’m excited for Cub fans.” But, he said, “The Indians came out of nowhere.” After the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA crown, Breuer said Cleveland now has a chance to win another title after coming up goose eggs forever
By the time Breuer comes to the Fox Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino on Saturday, the World Series championship will have been decided. But whatever way the series ends, he said, “This is the best thing that could happen for baseball,” said Breuer. “I love it’s the Indians and Cubs.”
Although some best remember Breuer for his stint on “Saturday Night Live” and his role as a stoner in the cult comedy classic film, “Half-Baked,” these days his humor has a more family-friendly approach.
The switch-up came after he was approached by a woman who told him she couldn’t go to one of his shows because he was too “blue.”
That charge unsettled the standup comedian. And he took the criticism to heart and began to adjust his comic approach.
But making the change wasn’t without its challenges.
“I had such a fear of doing this,” said Breuer. “I had a certain following.”
However, Breuer also felt comfortable about the evolution because “I knew who I was.”
After all, he explained, before “Saturday Night Live,” he often did standup bits about his wife and parents. So, he felt it was easy enough to go back to these roots.
When he first made the return to a family-oriented approach, Breuer—who is now the dad of three teenage daughters—said he brought a film crew along. He wasn’t filming it for broadcast. Instead, it was more like a pitcher filming his wind-up so he could make some adjustments if needed.
As he ventured out to perform his new family friendly routine, Breuer said he decided to try the new approach in front of his regular following. He figured if the fans of SNL and “Half-Baked” bought into it, the real family people would be a “piece of cake.”
To his surprise, Breuer said, “I had a standing ovation every night (with the new routine).”
To top it off, Breuer said, one fan in Ohio—who wanted a night of comedy from the guy in “Half-Baked”—came up to the comedian after the show. The fan told Breuer that after watching the comedian’s family oriented set, he was inspired to become a dad himself. Additionally, the fan told Breuer, “I have new respect for you.”
That was when Breuer knew he was on the right path. Those kind of comments empowered him to continue in this new direction.
Joking about what happens in a family does have its own pitfalls. A comedian risks exposing what most people consider private moments.
However, Breuer said his family takes his act in stride. “They’re pretty open,” said Breuer. “We remain open in the househosehold. We have no secrets.”
That said, on stage, Breuer said, “I try to be a little vague but go into specific subjects.”
“Everyone seems pretty good about it,” said Breuer of his family.
Asked if the young Breuer had ever envisioned himself as a dad making jokes about his kids, Breuer said, “I’ pictured myself as a dad. I didn’t think I’d be a dad of all girls.”
But, he said, he was well-equipped for the situation. “I grew up around girls. I have a deep respect for females in general.” And he had good role models as he grew up.
“I knew I’d be a dad and I’d be a good dad,” said Breuer.
Family, said Breuer, “is more important to me than anything else.”
Besides his comedy, Breuer also has stepped into the world of music, having released a new rock album, “Songs from the Garage,” earlier this year.
The album isn’t an extension of Breuer’s comedy. Instead, it’s an extension of his love for music.
“I did not want to be Spinal Tap,” said Breuer of the parody heavy metal band that was a subject of a faux documentary. “I didn’t want it to be a goof.”
Originally, said Breuer, he “feared putting something decent out” for that reason. But in his heart, he knew he would have to record something some day.
“It’s important to take it seriously,” said Breuer.
Breuer’s musical influences include 1980s and 1990s rock and metal, hard metal, thrash, and hair metal.
The lyrics on the album reflect the voice he has developed on stage in his comedy albeit without the jokes, said Bruer. He writes about family and the importance of family. He also writes about his distaste for pretentious people.
The Foxwoods gig will find Breuer, however, focusing on the standup.
And when fans savor the final moments of his gig, Breuer said he wants them to walk out of the Fox Theater with the feeling that they would go see him again. And he wants them to feel as if they want to share their love for Breuer’s comedy with all of their friends and family.
Jim Breuer performs at The Fox Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino on Saturday, Nov. 5 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $60, $45, and $30. For more information, go to Foxwoods.com