We're well into summer, and comedy clubs are keeping a full schedule of laughs this week. But you might notice more independent shows popping up as well. Your local bar or restaurant might be having a comedy night, so you have even more options to check out stand-up talent. And some of those shows are free! So get out of the heat, sit back and enjoy some comedy this weekend. It's good for you.
Here's the lineup:
Bob Zany at Tampa Improv. Zany's been doing comedy for so long, he started when you could actually smoke the cigar he brings to the stage. Now it's just part of his stage presence, along with the fast-paced jokes and relatable premises that have kept him in demand on stages for more than 30 years. Showtimes are Wednesday at 8 p.m. and Thursday at 8 p.m. $5-$14. 1600 E. Eighth Ave., Tampa (Ybor City). Info: improvtampa.com or 813-864-4000.
Bill Bellamy at Tampa Improv. Ever use the phrase "booty call?" Many people credit Bellamy for bringing it into the national lexicon. On stage he's an animated, comfortable storyteller, transitioning into controversial topics with the ease of a longtime stage veteran. Showtimes are Friday at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m. $25. 1600 E. Eighth Ave., Tampa (Ybor City). Info: improvtampa.com or 813-864-4000.
Got Jokes? at Tampa Improv. The popular local troupe of comedians, improv actors and spoken word artists brings an interactive experience to the stage. The diverse cast of performers will improvise just about anything into original comedy. Showtime is Wednesday, July 15 at 8 p.m. $10. 1600 E. Eighth Ave., Tampa (Ybor City). Info: improvtampa.com or 813-864-4000.
Rory Albanese at Side Splitters. You didn't think Jon Stewart did The Daily Show all by himself, did you? Albanese was a writer and served as executive producer on the popular program for several years, collecting a truck full of Emmys in the process. On stage you'll get a taste of the snarky wit and clever observations that made it so popular, with the experienced comedian's material unrestrained by cable television's language and content limitations. Showtimes are Thursday at 8:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. and Saturday at 6 p.m., 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. $10-$16.50. 12938 N. Dale Mabry, Tampa. Info: sidesplitterscomedy.com or 813-960-1197.
Mick Foley at Side Splitters. Yes, Foley is a wrestler. Everyone knows that. But there's nothing strange about seeing him on a comedy stage. The accomplished writer and public speaker has a genuine gift for comedy, and an ease of performing that proves he belongs anywhere with a microphone and an audience. One night only. Showtime is Sunday at 7 p.m. $27. 12938 N. Dale Mabry, Tampa. Info: sidesplitterscomedy.com or 813-960-1197.
Lahna Turner at Snappers Grill & Comedy Club. We'd make a reference to Lana Turner, the 1940s starlet, but we'd just be dating ourselves. Instead we'll say that Turner is married to comedy heavyweight Ralphie May, but she's established a successful career in her own right. Armed with a guitar and plenty of adult wit, she shares personal anecdotes and inappropriate songs with strong comic timing and material. Showtimes are Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. $15. 36657 U.S. 19 N., Palm Harbor. Info: snappersgrill.com or 727-938-2027.
Terry Gillespie at 2 Palms. "Mr. Rubberface" uses impressions and facial contortions to accentuate his punchlines, providing a visual component to his jokes that few comedians can match. Opening the show is Chuck Glass from the Got Jokes? improv troupe. Showtime is Saturday at 8:30 p.m. $10. 2950 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd., Clearwater. Info: 2 Palms Bar & Bistro on Facebook or 727-400-6920.
One-nighters and Independent Shows
Traci Kanaan at Finley's Irish Pub (free show). Kanaan takes the songs you love and twists them into adult comedy. She also sprinkles in some stand-up to add some variety — and inappropriate punch lines. Showtime is Saturday at 8:30 p.m. Free. 13477 Belcher Road S., Largo. Info: 727-535-7858.
Cigar City Comedy at Wicked 'Wiches. This weekly free show (donations accepted) includes a few shorter sets followed by a featured closer, usually delivering adult material. This week's closer is Mona Chiorizio. Showtime is Thursday at 8:30 p.m. Free (donation). 223 S. Howard Ave., Tampa. Info: cigarcitycomedy.com.
Kava Komedy at Bula Cafe. This bi-weekly show features local up-and-comers to warm up the crowd, and a more established closer to cap things off. This week it's The Unprofessionals, an improv group that performs improvisational exercises and games to entertain the crowd. Showtime is Thursday at 9 p.m. Free. 2500 Fifth Ave N., St. Petersburg. Info: 727-498-8913
Traci Kanaan at Niagara Tap (free show). The Princess of Parodies brings her naughty song parodies, stand-up material and quirky personality to the stage. Showtime is Friday at 7 p.m. 11950 Seminole Blvd. in Largo. Info: theniagaratap.com or 727-581-5331.
G. David Howard at Sporty's On The Beach. Howard's weekly residence at Sporty's features the longtime comedian drawing from his decades of stage experience. He mixes his regular material with plenty of crowd work to provide the kind of set only a true stand-up veteran can provide. By the way, there's a $5 coupon for this show on Howard's website under "special offers." Showtime is Friday and Saturday at 9:05 p.m. $20. 17093 Gulf Blvd., North Redington Beach. Info: 727-596-6725 or gdavidhoward.com.