We had the good fortune of connecting with Sean Grant and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sean, what’s the most difficult decision you’ve ever had to make?
Moving to Los Angeles. I was living with my Great Grandmother in Miami who was in her 90s. She always sacrificed so much for me and it broke my heart to leave and to not be there for her on a daily basis. But she was supportive and brave. We spoke every night until the day she passed away. She had helped me to cultivate a strong relationship with God which was paramount for me to succeed on this journey. This journey has included going dead broke, living in my car for a bit, working a canvassing job with a majority of folks who were recently incarcerated, and constant rejection. But all of that was necessary to show me what I could be and now I welcome anything that pushes me to grow with open arms.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a stand-up comic by trade. It is famously not an easy road….I’ve been boo’ed, heckled, made bad business deals, not unlike every other comic. As far as becoming more skilled at the art form I have learned the most by constantly leaving my comfort zones. If I’m staying in one club, area or circuit for too long I know that I must travel or re-introduce myself elsewhere so that when high-level success does come I have no issues in any situation. Along the way, I’ve performed at Church functions, Business Functions, the toughest urban nights, equally tough red-neck bars, for two people, packed houses, backyards, Civic Centers, Army bases, Naval ships, Late Night TV, experimental TV, Festivals and way way more….each event teaching me a unique and necessary lesson. My brand is still under construction and perhaps will always be. As I grow and evolve as a person I bring my comedic skill and sensibilities with me. At this stage, I am learning constantly about the professional aspect of the business. Pitching, doing general meetings, following up on emails, smiling through a rejection, analyzing my performances, and engaging my fan base. My mentors are all of the comedians who I admire and encounter in person but also many who I have never and will never meet but who offer guidance in books, like for example. Steve Martin, Kevin Hart, Rodney Dangerfield, Groucho Marx, Richard Pryor…. I’ve read over one hundred biographies on comics or listened to their interviews and will continue to do so. Even though all roads are different, every now and again something familiar from an old road map provided by a legend allows me to avoid a potential catastrophe.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Although this year hasn’t allowed it my go to’s for hanging out are always comedy clubs. The most inviting and chill for me is The Haha Comedy Club in North Hollywood where I perform regularly. Great staff, comic friendly The Owners know the business well. A cool hangout is also the patio of the Comedy Store. I have been grateful to become Friends and Family at The Store and many of the Door Guys and regulars are dear friends and there up and comers can hang shoulder to shoulder with industry giants and all present can just feel like one of the gang…until Rogan or Chappelle drive off in some unreleased million dollar space car and bring you back down to earth. If my friend wants to see some amazing improv and or standup then the spot is The Westside Comedy Theater in Santa Monica. High-level performances, legendary pop-ins and a staff that respects the stage and audience greatly.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Wow! There are so many people that have offered me guidance, opportunities, and encouragement, so much so that the question itself is stressful. But if I were to limit it to one person it would be the late great Will “Da Real One” Bell. He was a poet in Miami who owned the only Spoken Word Poetry Venue in the country at the time, The Literary Cafe and Poetry Lounge. After seeing me perform for a while he offered me a night…. Make A Funny Mondays and allowed me to grow as a promoter and host under his tutelage. One piece of advice he gave me which stands out supremely was “Always be humble, yet explosive.” Until this day I make sure to be the most respectful, easy-going comic in the green room but when I get on stage make the audience roar so loud that the other comics have to come out to watch and perhaps prep themselves a bit more if they haven’t been up yet.