I got to interview Artie Lange in my coverage of the Hoboken Comedy Festival for The Jersey Journal this week! Check out my story below:
The past few years have been a wild ride for Hoboken’s Artie Lange, but he’s in a good place now.
He hosts “The Artie Lange Show” on DirecTv and Sirius satellite radio which airs live on weeknights from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. He’s also headlining this year’s Hoboken Comedy Festival, performing at venues around the country, and releasing his second book, “Crash and Burn,” on Oct. 29. He also recently got engaged to Adrienne, his girlfriend of four years.
The 45-year-old took time out of his busy schedule to speak about comedy, sports, Howard Stern and his ongoing battle against addiction.
Summer Dawn Hortillosa: Hey, Artie. How’s the radio show going?
Artie Lange: It’s a blast. I do it in a 7,000-square-foot loft. DirecTv built me that as a studio — and it’s great.
SDH: Your experience from “The Howard Stern Show” comes in handy, I’d imagine. Do you guys still talk?
AL: I’ve spoken to Howard a couple times over the last couple years and we still have a good relationship. I would love to go on the show someday. I think he cares about me … I learned so much being on Howard … I’m working my ass off. This is my own show, so obviously I can do whatever I want, but it’s sports-oriented. It’s a funny show, there’s comedy without question, but the main thing is sports. I’m a big sports fan.
SDH: You’ve been in Hoboken for 12 years. Do you like it?
AL: I love it. I love the fact that you can see New York, but you’re not in it … It’s perfect. I love Hoboken. It’s a great community with great food and great people.
SDH: What are some of your favorite spots?
AL: I love City Bistro, Uptown Pizza, Dino and Harry’s, Biggie’s Clam Bar. There’s also a hot dog place that just opened last year, (WindMill Hot Dogs), and they put a mural of local celebrities on the back wall and I made it! That was really, really cool.
SDH: It’s no secret you’ve faced a lot of demons. How are you doing now?
AL: I’m doing very well. I’m clean and sober; there are AA meetings I go to in Hoboken. (Some addicts say), ‘I’ve found the secret formula, I’m going to be clean for the rest of my life’ — I can’t have that pressure. But right now I’m productive, working and doing OK.
SDH: Do you talk about that in your book?
AL: Yes. “Crash and Burn” is about the last four or five years of my life — OD’ing on heroin, being hospitalized, going to rehab, being in a mental institution, getting back on track … some harrowing experiences. It could be funny in certain areas but it’s a cautionary tale to people about what fame, money and drugs will do to you. It was really therapeutic (to write) and I’m so glad I did it.
SDH: Are you excited about doing the Hoboken Comedy Festival?
AL: Yes. Last year I had a surprise guest spot at Maxwell’s. I’m glad I got a chance to perform there before it closed down. This year I’ll be doing some new stuff including material (that will be on an upcoming Comedy Central special). I saw some guys who were on the night I performed like Ardie Fuqua, who is a really good comic. I love the festival.
Artie Lange performs as part of the Hoboken Comedy Festival on Sunday, Oct. 6 at 8 p.m. at Pilsener Haus, 1422 Grand St. Tickets are $45. VIP tickets with a meet-and-greet and open bar are $75. Ardie Fuqua, Maddog Mattern and Dan Soder will also perform.