Comedian and Silver Spring native Tommy Davidson talks about his smooth jazz collaboration with Dave Koz and the living color of comedy and why his Maryland roots remain deep.
baltimore, comedy, talking, people, silver spring, crab cake, weekend, friends, comedian, music, maryland, laugh, tommy davidson, smooth jazz, grew, road, dave koz, tour, tommy, towson baltimore
Tommy Davidson, Nestor Aparicio
Nestor Aparicio 00:01
W and S t test Baltimore and Baltimore positive we are positively taking the Maryland crabcake tour back out on the road. Friday morning good and early and what a weekend it’s going to be this segments going to be good. It’s all brought to you by the Maryland lottery littler letting ourselves play some holiday cash drops the giveaway, as well as our friends wind donation. 8669 donation, bringing the crab cake tour to Catonsville. So I’m going to be Kingsville Friday morning, and I’m from Dawn dogs at east side of town right at the edge where the city meets the county, little comedy going on this weekend, and a real homecoming. And you know, my wife’s used to me being in here talking to celebrities and all that. But my wife heard to Tommy Davidson was coming to town. She started like ripping and cut and living color lines, and having a good time and movie lines and all that. So it is a pleasure to welcome home. But on my program for the very first time. The great Tommy Davidson not even talking calm and we’re gonna talk smooth jazz, you’re so inspired, Tommy, how are you, man?
Tommy Davidson 01:00
Things are going great man. In this mood Jazz Bass. I made it put it that way I made it in.
Nestor Aparicio 01:07
How do you know you made? When do you know you made it?
Tommy Davidson 01:09
Well, well, first of all, I’m working with the top guys and girls in the in that business. And my song was accepted. So I did a song called Sweet reunion with Dave Koz. And it went really well. And then my next one, the the recent releases is called I know. And it’s with Richard Elliot. And both of those guys are established. been around a long time. But on top of that really great guys that love entertainment. And so this year, my first year in smooth jazz, I get nominated for the breakout Artist of the Year.
Nestor Aparicio 01:47
I mean, that’s unbelievable, right?
Tommy Davidson 01:50
You know, I mean when I did, but no, but I did because I’m the breakout Artist of the Year. So
Nestor Aparicio 02:00
I’m a writer, like by Trey, like my first vocation was a sports writer in the 80s. Like you used to be a comedian back in the day down on the DC beltway and playing up here and being around. But smooth jazz the last 15 years of my life ever since I discovered that television had music channels. And I would go random. Like, that’s kind of nice. I listened to a ton of Dave cause I actually got a picture with a cause in Cuba that 23 years ago, he went down there really? Yeah, I was here for baseball and long story about a gate to Domenico Andy Summers in the police crazy stuff. But But Dave Koz and smooth jazz, it is sort of I don’t see my guilty pleasure. But it’s the thing you don’t brag. I mean, I have bragged on social media that I do get inspired by smooth jazz, coming to you, you smooth
Tommy Davidson 02:46
out for a long, long time, for probably it probably started around 87 or something, you know, right before I got to LA and got into TV and movies and stuff like that. And I’ve always been influenced by great music because they come from the Washington, DC metropolitan area. And that now is the DMV. And so so you know, and there was all this influx of different music. And that was one of the ones that caught my ear early, early in my childhood and throughout, because we have great radio and great music in that area. But I have fixed on it. Because it seemed like the right door to go through to go into music. You see I can go into music in any genre I want to because for me, I believe that I can do music well in any genre. But I want to go in and I want to make the effort, a genuine effort every single time not going into rock and going. I’m doing rock because I can do it. But go into rock because I got this great song that’s killing you know with you know, with with slash and members of Allison chains and do it with some people that I know can do a great job with me know me love me. And we can make some people happy out there. And Hip Hop the same thing and, and whatever is next the same thing. But what’s most important to me is I don’t want to go out there and say hey, look, I’m a singer. Check this out. And I’m subject to someone on the couch in Buffalo, someone on the living room couch on their porch in Buffalo saying, I hate his music. He’s some critic. You know what I mean? I don’t want to, I don’t want the I don’t want the bathroom stalls. You know, and I’ll explain this to you. I don’t want the bathroom stalls to have any power. You know, social media is great to get your stuff out there. You know, but it’s not so great to keep your stuff out there because it’s not really the place of quality. It’s the place of popularity. I’m about quality first. So I wanted to go somewhere where I can go to an audience that really digs me knows about me understands that I’m an artist understands what the music is, you know, and goes to the shows.
Nestor Aparicio 05:17
Were you musical guys a kid growing up DC me? Where did you do I should say, My Fair Lady because just played here at the Hippodrome and I took my middle school teacher and I was in My Fair Lady and it anyone, but were you a singer in that way before you were an actor? Comedian?
Tommy Davidson 05:32
Yeah, wait, what, four years old? You know, a spoon on the table in front of an audience. I was just talking to a friend of mine that grew up with me in silver spring. And he said, I remember from first grade to fifth grade. You were like, killing every talent show. You were you know, seeing it. I thought you’re gonna be a singer, man. You know, right. Yeah. And me too. Me too. And CAMI happened.
Nestor Aparicio 06:03
Easy for you. I mean, it always felt like in that troop in the beginning. I mean, for anybody seeing your face and coming out to see you this weekend. And you’re doing five shows on my side of town here this weekend. On championship game weekend, we’re gonna let everybody know how to get tickets and get involved and come out and see your rack. But
Tommy Davidson 06:19
I got a question for you for that, by the way.
Nestor Aparicio 06:21
But I see you and I think, oh, Tommy, let me come come at you. I mean, you’ve been making us laugh all this time. I don’t want to say it’s typecasted for anybody because you’ve done all sorts of things, right? I mean, and you’re clearly fearless and part of the comedian that makes you fearless. Makes you unafraid to fail, I’m sure, right?
Tommy Davidson 06:40
I mean, there’s no such thing for me. You know, I make an effort. You like it? You don’t? Oh, I did it. I did it. I was watching. I was watching a documentary on the guy that invented the 240 Z. And he was in his backyard. He was doing his bonsai plants. All he got for what he did was like this, this Rolex watch from the corporation, you know, and they were and he was back to talking about the car. But he said, I think that I can make a sports car from Japan that can trump every sports car in Europe and the US and be the best seller. And he did it. So the guy goes to him says, Hey, man, you did all that. And he only gave you Rolex. How do you feel about that? He said, I don’t feel any kind of way about that. I had the idea.
Nestor Aparicio 07:27
Bragging rights as it were,
Tommy Davidson 07:29
it’s my idea.
Nestor Aparicio 07:31
Right on. So you did you go to DEF CON? I mean, how did this come together? You did a Kenny logon song right there to kind of pop out of this thing, right? Yeah,
Tommy Davidson 07:40
yeah, yeah, I’m influenced by everything. You know, Kenny Loggins is one of the guys that influenced me from way back before I live in color. You know, one of the guys I looked up to as as as a skilled artist and wanted to be like, you know, I mean, you already know that right? I mean, Kenny just crosses you know? Hard to
Nestor Aparicio 08:05
believe but don’t hold
Tommy Davidson 08:08
me when. Darling know how. keep me going. We’re all together. Not a week. You.
Nestor Aparicio 08:18
Only wish guy aren’t you telling me Davidson? You’re not wrong?
Tommy Davidson 08:28
I’m yacht rock. I’m here. I’m I’m rock rock. I’m sick rock. I’m rush. You know, I’m rushing. I’m all of it.
Nestor Aparicio 08:39
Really? You and Geddy Lee getting to go? Will you be doing to anything? So I dare I say you’re at the Comedy factory this weekend here in Baltimore. You’re doing five shows to on Friday night to on Saturday at some different times. So make sure you get to Baltimore comedy.com Learn more about everything going on over know Donald Street and the height. So my side of town is I would say it’s great. So you’re gonna say things like you just stay? Are you doing? Good? Can’t you go do Michael McDonald this weekend to
Tommy Davidson 09:04
it? I never know. You know, I get into Minority Report. Everybody see the movie Minority Report I did not see. In the beginning of the in the movie. He’s moved all these images around to find out who the killer is? Well, for me, I move all these images around to find who’s gonna laugh at what. So I look at audiences I go, Okay, that didn’t work. But I’ll do this and I’ll do that. But once I find it, I drill a hole and I dig in, you know, and I’ve been really lucky man. Really, really lucky. And I can think I can think the radio too from where we from. And an era we’re from. Maybe a little bit older than you, but anywhere from nine. She’s
Nestor Aparicio 09:41
a little older now. I got the wiki.
Tommy Davidson 09:45
Okay, okay, just a little bit. Okay.
Nestor Aparicio 09:47
I’ll be 55 this year, so no, spring chicken.
Tommy Davidson 09:51
I think he might be the same ages as the Ravens coach. I’m so so so. I’m so am ready. Go. When I was growing up, and you grew up in the area, you’re only four years, you only three years. Four years
Nestor Aparicio 10:07
was all we had in the car in 1975. Right? We were little boys. Right? Right, right.
Tommy Davidson 10:12
Yeah. So we had it all. So we got we got to enjoy all facets of music. Because nothing was held away from us. You know, we had done Krishna, Hi, I’m done crushing it. And this is rock concert tonight where parliament and Funkadelic and Grand Forks and iron butterfly see in a minute.
Nestor Aparicio 10:31
We have Don Cornelius to now come on right here. We had Duncan,
Tommy Davidson 10:35
he was with the Soul Train. And I mean, it was all we had at all. That’s what I’m trying to say. Well, all I’m trying to say is
Nestor Aparicio 10:45
then MTV came? Yeah, it changed everything.
Tommy Davidson 10:49
Well, you know, hey, you know, it must move on. But it’s coming, right. But the cool thing is things to come into right back to where they started. You know, but you just got to kind of grab them on an individual basis.
Nestor Aparicio 11:02
Has there been a point where you didn’t do stand up for a long period of time? Are you have you always been sort of working on your chops. And I always want to ask as a writer that you had this outlet is a young man and this team to do when you had something, boom, it could be on TV in a week or two in your case. But how does this work?
Tommy Davidson 11:24
Comedy is the backbone comedy is you know, Tom Brady is football. Bruce Lee has martial arts. Michael Jordan has basketball. You know, the things that are the foundation. And then you move up from there to whatever you want to do. But the foundation for me it’s stand up. And it’s something that I never really stopped doing. You know, unlike athletics, you know, you can play longer. You know, I mean, serious,
Nestor Aparicio 11:59
you know, always fresh material for you to
Tommy Davidson 12:02
always, but as far as you know, they’ve been diverse. You can kind of watch that word only like to say the word diversity, how we like to see it all of a sudden, you know, people would be on the radio, this radio says, What about it? What about your friends? What do you think about it? You know, so it’s just there. And that’s the start. And that’s where I go from? I go from that center. You know, and I go from there and and and and branch off into all these other other other roads. There’s the television route there’s the animation road there’s the there’s the media road is a you know, there’s all these roads there’s musician road, there’s there’s the there’s the Broadway or the plane road, the theater road. You know, it doesn’t it doesn’t really end with me.
Nestor Aparicio 12:50
I love when you add row when you’re giving the families vacations. That’s just a beautiful thing, man. Oh, change your heart, won’t it?
Tommy Davidson 12:58
Wasn’t that show?
Nestor Aparicio 13:01
Oh, my, they can make you feel good, especially, you know, during the plague or after the plague, right? Like, after all we’ve been through, you know,
Tommy Davidson 13:11
we had a couple from Baltimore, a lesbian couple from Baltimore, who had got married recently. And one of them had a child from a previous marriage. sucked on a piece of candy and died. Oh, man, okay. They never went to their honeymoon because of it. We took them on a cruise around the world. You know, they went and to Tahiti and all these beautiful places did all these beautiful things. We were fortunate enough to cast their their son’s ashes at sea. Oh, wow. We redid their vows. With the captain of the ship. They’re here
Nestor Aparicio 13:52
in Baltimore. I gotta get a crab cake with them. You should come up here and get a crab cake one day with them. And just tell the whole story make everybody cry. We’ll talk about Tahiti man. It’d be great. I got to hear the whole story. Now. I’m gonna have to go watch the episode, bro.
Tommy Davidson 14:10
I’m taking you up on that.
Nestor Aparicio 14:12
No, can you do with the Maryland crabcake Georgia. I just want to win the crabcake tour on Friday. Tommy Davidson cheer let’s see comedian
Tommy Davidson 14:20
by that thing. Can I stop by there?
Nestor Aparicio 14:22
Oh, stay fair. 9am till noon you come by anytime you want to make it’s it’s right in Kingsville Well, yeah, it’s right. Back way between Silver Spring and Baltimore. Look closer to Baltimore. I know where it is. I know where it is. Yeah. So do you get home do you consider this? Oh,
Tommy Davidson 14:40
yeah, do that Tom. And I don’t get there that often. I may come back to about three or four times a year. To to to to do comedy or entertainment or to see my sister and my family, my friends. And boy do I got a lot. I got a lot of grew up in a place called Rosemary hills and southern hills. general areas 16th And easements highway, or it could be either Georgia Avenue and coastal road, depending upon how you come into it, you know, far from the city line, pretty close. Right? Right, right near the city line. And close to Chevy Chase and similar spirit is there. My friends that I grew up with, in that neighborhood, hundreds and hundreds of kids, you know, now, my age, and a bit younger, but we’re all still in contact. You know, it was a very strong, strong community, and a very diverse community for its kind. And thanks to my mom, it was a co op community where tenants could actually buy their apartments. And she worked for the Housing and Urban Development, and was responsible for all these different changes in housing. You know, which was really interesting.
Nestor Aparicio 15:57
To me, I talk about it here all the time, affordable housing, I do a lot with Baltimore positive with politicians through all of this, and obviously, during COVID Oh, man, people being evicted, like, you know, just all of the worst of the worst, right, and trying to give it give a lift up. Right. That was your mom, right?
Tommy Davidson 16:13
Yeah, yeah, definitely. You know, we’re talking about some great cities, some really great cities, with a lot of different types of people. And so I’m proud to be a part of that, who triangular, where we come from, and it’s a part of who I am and, and I plan on coming back. You know, I plan on coming back and doing some things and businesses and stuff there. And really getting involved in the area. As matter of fact, I’m gonna be given an award to a really good friend of mine who goes and visits to prisons, for for for women who are there for long term. And I actually hooked her up with a woman there from Baltimore, that has a foundation that helps. That helps human track women caught a human trafficking internationally. And she’s giving her the award, and all I had to do was hit him up on the phone. And it happened. Power, proximity
Nestor Aparicio 17:11
and relationships telling me David to give me a little education here today. He’ll be at the Baltimore comedy factory on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. And if you don’t want to watch a football game, go see Tom he’ll make you laugh and I just the last thing for you comedy is a little more dangerous. Man, you talked about this a little bit in regard to diversity and what you can say what you can’t say. And I’ve talked to so many comedians in the modern era, and I guess really over the last decade where things have changed and we’ve seen incidents and clubs and people are easily more easily offended in thin skin and all that certainly not the range you want to be in to come into the Baltimore economy factor this weekend. But but it has it changed your job, fundament now your job but how you go about your job.
Tommy Davidson 17:53
I got real fortunate on that one. I was being I was being prodded by people in my family and people who are doing comedy. You got to have more edge like these other guys. Grammar edge. Well, what does edge mean? Edge to me means that you don’t laugh anymore. You just go woohoo. And I got to comedy made people laugh and not go off. Oh, whoa, whoa, you know, I got into comedy to see people go
Nestor Aparicio 18:31
where’s the line though? Where you know you’re being mean or not being mean? Or being funny or being the eyes? Because you never know where the end of that plank isn’t the end of that place different for every person right? Literally.
Tommy Davidson 18:44
I would think that was in the end. I would I would give that to the comedy of the beholder.
Nestor Aparicio 18:50
Well, I’m looking forward to be holding your comedy and I really appreciate you spend a little time I know your window short five shows this weekend Tommy Dave knows camp crabcakes dude, Don, I’ve asked
Tommy Davidson 19:02
me what it owes you.
Nestor Aparicio 19:04
You just think you’re talking to a guy was frankly long hair. He’s you know, genuinely younger looking. Well, that’s that’s the COVID do it just started growing. And it was curly. My wife’s like, you look Italian you look like Furio and the sopranos Yeah, so so. So but for me this crabcake thing. I’ve had more crabcakes and more places. I pride myself on this than anybody I’ve met to date. So I’ve done two and a half years of crabcakes we’ve gone all over the state we’ve had him on the Eastern Shore West. Everywhere there is to have a crab cake and uh, you know when it’s done it stimulated diversity of conversation. It’s allowed me to sit down in an era with anyone and talk about anything over a beer and ice de vaca Bloody Mary and a crab cake and in your case, one of each be fine if you want to stop by on Friday but but it really a pleasure to have you on a pleasure to be back. My wife’s gonna interview you next time because she’s a big fan, and I let her know we had a good time together. Randall. Hey, everybody get out to Baltimore comedy if you want to find the Tommy Davis, I don’t even talk about your book, dude. Next time on, we got to talk about all right. All right. Thank you for the great conversation. I appreciate it.
Tommy Davidson 20:12
One more thing. One more thing. Good. isn’t just me, or did that receiver for the Ravens almost cast that touchdown?
Nestor Aparicio 20:19
Hey, hey, don’t be listen,
Tommy Davidson 20:21
I was gonna. No, no, no. Did you see that? Yeah, he
Nestor Aparicio 20:24
laid out. He didn’t catch it. It didn’t happen. The season’s over. Listen, I was gonna say to you, we’re talking all those nice things about silver spring. And I’m thinking, I’m sure they’re nice people. But they were Washington. Football fans down there. You know what I mean? This Baltimore Washington thing we all you know, the ties that bind maybe
Tommy Davidson 20:44
the ties about Yeah, I know. I’m a Viking fan.
Nestor Aparicio 20:48
All right. Well, you’re suffering too. All right. We’re all suffering. Suffering.
Tommy Davidson 20:55
In the background, make me mad.
Nestor Aparicio 20:58
Tommy Davidson, the heart of In Living Color. He’ll be in your heart and certainly in our community. I Marylander by birth and put a Washington football fan by choice. Baltimore comedy.com is the way to find the tickets and you can find him at the Tommy davidson.com as well as adult social media and wherever like you wherever free laughs or soul is what I would say we are wn st am 5070, Towson Baltimore. You never know who’s gonna show up on the Maryland crabcake tour. We’ve given away some holiday cash drops as well as our friends at window nation on Friday at State Fair. We’ll see you there we are wn st am 1570, Towson Baltimore. And we never stop talking Baltimore positive