Detroit Stories Episode 47: 'It's a Funny Story' (PODCAST)

Canton native Shawn Reynolds is the funniest comic east of the Mississippi — but his devotion to God and family is no joke

(0:02) Canton native Shawn Reynolds reflects on how a mundane job at a Dunkin Donuts as a teenager foreshadowed both his personal and professional life — one in which he’d marry the love of his life and end up touring the country as a full-time comedian.

(2:18) Reynolds and his wife, Katie, married young and had six children. He never thought of comedy as a career — although he was good at it — until an aunt suggested it after he gave a toast at his brother’s wedding.

(3:41) Reynolds tested his gig at local open mic nights and discovered, to his great surprise, that he wasn’t that bad at making people laugh.

(6:00) Finding success as an open mic comic at local comedy clubs, Reynolds — a devoted husband, father and committed Christian — didn’t resort to the vulgarity and bathroom humor so popular in mainstream comedy in part because his kids wanted to watch him perform.

(7:09) Listeners get to hear a taste of Reynolds’ act, in which he jokes about his own life as a father, son, and self-proclaimed “trophy husband.”

(8:30) Reynolds talks about Tim Hawkins, a man whom Reynolds now considers the “mountain of Christian comedy.” After seeing one of Hawkins’ shows, Reynolds made it his own dream to pursue comedy full time in the same vein. Before long, he was opening for Hawkins, and eventually headlining his own shows.

(11:05) Reynolds talks about the difference between performing in a comedy club and performing in a church, which he often does today. While Reynolds doesn’t actively seek to evangelize through his comedy, he nevertheless sees it as a ministry to those in attendance who might be hurting, struggling or depressed.

(13:30) Reynolds closes each of his shows with a heartfelt, humorous story about the adoption of his son, Keegan, and how God’s plan is both beautiful, funny and a bit of everything that makes life special.

Reporting by Daniel Meloy; script and narration by Casey McCorry; production by Ron Pangborn

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Listen to ‘Detroit Stories’ on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or Spotify. Podcasts also will be posted biweekly on DetroitCatholic.com.



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