A book about comedian Greg Giraldo

One of this century's best comedians deserves a book. Learn Greg Giraldo's story from those who knew him best. Many know Greg Giraldo's work from Comedy Central roasts, late night television, and comedy clubs. However, few comedy fans have heard the story of his days after Harvard Law School, ascension to cult comic icon, and premature demise from his addiction.

We've interviewed nearly 60 people who help tell his story. From managers to his ex-wife, and many comedians, friends, producers, and entertainment journalists and writers -- all to uncover what motivated this stand-up legend and the impact of his work.

Check out also media coverage of the book: a news story about the book in The Interrobang, and interviews with co-author Matt Balaker on the Comic's Comic site and the Comedians Defying Gravity blog.

The book will be published in fall 2018.


This book started as a successfully funded Kickstarter project by Matt Balaker. Wayne Jones was one of the Kickstarter backers, and is now co-authoring the book with Matt. The idea is to produce a biography and an appreciation of Greg Giraldo’s life and comic work, based on original interviews with those who knew and worked with him, but also supplemented with other research. We are aiming for spring 2018 as our publication date, and hope to launch the book at the Comedy Cellar, the club where Giraldo got his first start in the early 1990s.

About The Authors

Matt Balaker & Wayne Jones

Matt Balaker. I write jokes and tell them on stage periodically. When I'm not interviewing people about Greg Giraldo, I am likely spending time with my wife and two sons.

Wayne Jones. I’m an academic librarian with a serious interest in comedy. I spend time with friends and family, and like to write all sorts of things.


Excerpt One

Giraldo excelled on Tough Crowd: he was a frequent guest and a crowd favorite. “He was the best. I mean, he just was never flustered. He was committed.” [Judy Gold] The format suited not only his intelligence and his quick wit, but also the habit he had throughout his career of always writing and always being prepared.
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Excerpt Two

The secret to Giraldo’s success at the roasts was not just about going up first of course. As he had done for other gigs during his twenty-year career, he concentrated on the writing, treating the roasts not merely as a novelty but taking them seriously as a way to demonstrate his talent.
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Excerpt Three

There’s a curious intersection of two comedy careers involving both the Montreal Comedy Festival and new sitcoms on ABC: Giraldo was not the only comedian who made a splash in Montreal and ended up with his own series on network television. So did Ray Romano, with Everybody Loves Raymond.
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Excerpt Four

“He was not an insult comic,” notes Noam Dworman, manager of the famed Comedy Cellar in New York’s Greenwich Village. “It was just how talented he was. So he got those opportunities to do these roasts and, of course, he was the best at it,” Dworman continues. “That was a big platform, all of a sudden twenty times more people saw him then before. Now he becomes a insult comic in peoples’ minds. That was the least of his things and not at all what anybody who really knew him admired about him.”
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Contact Us

Please contact us any time if you’re interested in the book. Have some information that you’d like to share? Want more details about the book? Want to interview us? Please write ...

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