Born and raised in the NW Washington D.C. Eddie Liles is a comedian, actor, writer, and producer that will not let you forget him. Standing 6’5″ 300lbs, this guy’s laugh is infectious and genuine. He is also one of the co-hosts of the ” I’ma Get In Trouble” Podcast.
Eddie grew up wanting to be a theatre actor on Broadway but quickly found that he was better at making people laugh. After playing football and studying theater at Bowie State University. He went into multiple jobs as a Hospitality Manager where he fell into the routine of hating working for other people but always making others laugh. All of this has added to his “I can do anything” “Bully” style of comedy and storytelling. He shines on stage like no and will have you talking about his performance for weeks.
In 2012, made the decision to focus on becoming one of the best stand-up comedians in the world, and he has been doing just that. Eddie has been featured on Multiple Festivals across the Country. He is a regular feature performer for Tony Woods. He has also opened for Dave Chappelle, David Keochner, Tim Dillan, Joe Clair, Rich Vos, Shane Gillis, Donnell Rawlings, and many others.
As CEO of Broken Diamond Comedy LLC. Eddie has produced some of the biggest independent Comedy events in the DMV. He has worked Dupont Underground: Comedy and Events, Baltimore Comedy Festival, DC Comedy Festival, a host of venues, and Comedy clubs.
We had the opportunity of sitting down with Eddie to discuss his background, influences, entrepreneurship and more:
Eddie, could you share a bit about your background and upbringing in D.C., and how it has influenced your career in comedy?
My uncle E-boogie is a comedian and started when I was really young. I just saw how people loved it when he was around. Being a singer and musician at a young age made me crave the stage, but size and strength pushed me in a different direction. When I got hurt playing sports, I wanted nothing more than to be back on stage. I tried comedy, and I fell head over heels for it. My comedy is just my stories throughout my life. I try to connect them to different cultures and backgrounds in the funniest way.
You originally aspired to be a theatre actor on Broadway. How did you make the transition to comedy, and what motivated that shift?
My size took dancing from me, lol. But I also stopped singing, and that muscle takes a lot to train back up. Comedy luckily gives me the same feeling stage acting does. I’m luckier, though, because I get to tell my story and not just another writer’s. I still long for the stage and will get back to it more often, but comedy has become my main focus.
You’ve described your comedy as having an “I can do anything” and “Bully” style. Can you elaborate on what that means and how it shows up in your performances?
When you’re making things funny, you can talk about anything. When you’re writing, you can do anything in the wording. It’s fun to create the story in the eyes of the audience. My size is my bullying. My voice makes you pay attention, and my size keeps your eye. My jokes make you have a good time. I’m not as fearful of what I want to talk about. Mostly I’m good with myself, so opinions only pass the time for me.
You’ve had the opportunity to open for some prominent comedians like Dave Chappelle and Donnell Rawlings. Can you share some memorable experiences from those moments?
The hang is awesome; you realize quickly every question you have, they’ve already been asked. So you just learn to vibe, chill, and fully relax. You meet an inspiration, and all they want is to relax. It makes you more relaxed. Then you realize this job is more fun than you ever thought, as long as you just relax.
As the CEO of Broken Diamond Comedy LLC, you’ve been involved in producing major comedy events. Could you highlight some of the most significant projects or events you’ve participated in in the DMV area?
DC Comedy Festival and Baltimore Comedy Festival are just amazing. In different cities but a lot of the same players. It’s dope being able to run around with peers that saw you as just Eddie. No matter how much recognition I get, I still am able to chill with my day ones. That’s what those are made for. We came from these scenes, and we get to go back and watch them grow from our sacrifices.
Your podcast, “I’ma Get In Trouble,” has gained attention. Can you tell us more about the podcast?
The podcast was started with Loy Lee and myself. With us both moving to different areas, it helps us give different perspectives on what’s happening in the US. With our differences in backgrounds, it’s just an added layer. When we brought on Terrance, it was like boom! East coast/ midwest/ and west coast all just having fun. We plan on getting more episodes out and a new format. But we are happy with what we were able to build.
What advice do you have for aspiring comedians looking to make a name for themselves in the comedy world, especially in the competitive stand-up comedy scene?
If you don’t have tough skin or need validation, don’t do this. You have to understand it takes time. And no matter how funny I am today, you are nowhere near as funny as you will be tomorrow. So just enjoy the journey.
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