Tom Cot­ter’s got tal­ent

The Prov­i­dence na­tive is bring­ing the laughs to Bos­ton.

Metro USA (Boston) - - WKND - MATT JUUL

New Eng­land’s Tom Cot­ter is back at his old stomp­ing grounds for a pair of nights in the Sea­port. The “Amer­ica’s Got Tal­ent” alum is ready to get rowdy with lo­cal com­edy fans, and can’t wait to be back in Pa­tri­ots na­tion.

“I love com­ing back to where it all be­gan for me. It’s still home and it makes my heart go pit­ter-pat,” says the 53-year-old Rhode Is­land na­tive. “Just talk­ing to peo­ple and hear­ing the ac­cent, it feels like I’m home. I’m still a New Eng­lan­der, and I’ve been in New York for 20 years, but I’m still a Bru­ins, Red Sox, Pa­tri­ots guy. Liv­ing in New York, it’s like a Pales­tinian liv­ing in an Is­raeli vil­lage, so it’s good to be home.“

We caught up with Cot­ter ahead of his re­turn to Bos­ton this week­end.

Lo­cal crowds can be pretty tough at times. Do you have any hor­ror sto­ries from your early days in the city’s com­edy scene?

I had a guy star­ing at me through an en­tire show one night in the front row, just kind of star­ing straight ahead. Fi­nally, I snapped and said, “Dude, what are you look­ing at?” As soon as the words were com­ing out of my mouth, I saw the blind cane next to his seat. There was no way to re­cover from that one.

How do you deal with a rowdy Bos­ton crowd?

I in­vite in­ter­ac­tion. I don’t think it should be a mono­logue. I re­ally be­lieve it should be a di­a­logue to some de­gree, a di­a­logue that you con­trol. I go into the au­di­ence, and I don’t pick on peo­ple or smash wa­ter­mel­ons, but I def­i­nitely en­gage them and I en­cour­age it. Some­times club own­ers will get a lit­tle ner­vous be­cause I’m en­gag­ing them so much, they think I’m invit­ing heck­ling, but that’s the way I like it. I like a rowdy crowd. I’d rather have some­one scream “You suck!” than fall asleep in the front row.

Your wife, “Last Comic Stand­ing” fi­nal­ist Kerri Louise, is also in the laugh busi­ness. Does that dy­namic make par­ent­ing eas­ier at all?

It’s al­most a cer­tainty that our chil­dren will be in ther­apy later. It is what it is. We kind of have a nor­mal fam­ily. Kerri and I defuse some of our dis­putes and ar­gu­ments with hu­mor, which I think is help­ful. And we’ve been mar­ried for 15 years and to­gether for 20, so what­ever we’re do­ing seems to be work­ing.

As a diehard Pa­tri­ots fan, do you think you could make the al­ways stone-faced Bill Belichick laugh?

I don’t want to be cocky and think I can make him laugh, but on his worst day, I could prob­a­bly get a chuckle out of him.

PRO­VIDED

Get rowdy with the “Amer­ica’s Got Tal­ent” alum.

Funny busi­ness.

Bust a gut. MARK JAMES DUNN PHOTOGRAPHY

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