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January 2024 - Make 'Em Laugh: Jake Otero

Jake Otero on stage at the Lobo Theater. Photo by Richard Maddox of CardoMadd Photography.
Jake Otero on stage at the Lobo Theater. Photo by Richard Maddox of CardoMadd Photography.

Jake Otero is a fun man. The 26-year-old stand-up comic loves to make people laugh and takes great pride in it, taking every advantage he gets to share his others on different stages throughout the country. Otero sat down with us to discuss what drew him to the art form, his influences, and his overall goals.

What drew you to comedy?

I was a fan of stand-up from a very young age and I just thought it was the coolest thing in the world to be able to just tell jokes for an hour. The adrenaline rush of being in front of people and making them laugh at something that you wrote from your perspective is something I can’t get enough of. The writing aspect of comedy and working out jokes that started bad but changing it to where it works is something that requires a lot of trial and error so it keeps you focused. There’s so much to learn and there’s so much to experience so I think the fact that you never know what’s going to happen is what keeps me going.

Who are your comedy influences?

My main comedy influence is Dave Attell. In my opinion, he is the best comedian that has ever touched the mic. His quickness, delivery, and ability to be 100% in the moment is something that I have never seen anyone do better. Attell doesn’t care about being a household name, he just wants to write jokes and be a comedian which is rare these days. 

What has been your best show?

My best show is a tie between when I headlined Dry Heat Comedy Club for Tape Jake and opening night for Quezadas Comedy Club. Tape Jake was amazing because I sold out Dry Heat, which I didn’t think I would do for a long time. My set at Quezadas Comedy Club was one of my best and it was crazy doing stand-up in front of so many people. 

What are the pros and cons of being a comic in New Mexico?

The pros of being a comic here are that there is so much opportunity to get on stage and to be able to get a solid foundation. We have great audiences and we even get audience members at open mics which is unheard of in bigger scenes like LA or NYC. We’re getting multiple comedy clubs which means that the scene is getting bigger and networking opportunities are through the roof. The cons would have to be that because the scene is barely growing now, people overlook us because they don’t about us yet. Bigger comedians, agents, and bookers don’t come here which is a shame because we do have some unbelievable talent here. This will all change soon hopefully. 

What gigs do you have coming up?

I’m at Dry Heat Comedy Club pretty much every weekend and I have a headlining gig in El Paso coming up in May of 2024 that I am very excited about. I’ve become less organized lately but if you follow my Instagram @jakeoterocomedy I usually post all my show dates as soon as I find out about them.

What is your goal when it comes to your career?

My goal is to be able to do comedy full-time while living in NYC. I want to be passed at the major clubs in New York and be able to headline clubs across the country. Getting a writing job on Late Night, SNL, The Onion, or The New Yorker would be amazing, too! I don’t care about being a huge star I just want to be able to perform in these legendary clubs and to be as good as I possibly can.


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