Vargus Mason has performed standup comedy for American troops in l6 countries, but his favorite topic to joke about is his life at home with his wife and 2-year-old daughter. With a manic stage presence that nails the behavior of anyone he talks about — especially his daughter — he manages to make his life universally relatable.
That’s a quality he’ll put to good use at 8:30 pm tonight at the Ice House, where Mason is headlining on a double bill with former “Last Comic Standing” top-10 finalist Adam Hunter.
Surprisingly, despite a career track record that includes appearances on HBO’s “Def Comedy Jam,” Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham,” the syndicated “Comics Unleashed,” BET’s “Comic-View” and VH1’s “Celebrity Roast for Flavor Flav” in addition to semi-finalist status on “Last Comic Standing,” tonight’s show is Mason’s first headlining gig at the Ice House.
“I talk a lot about relationships and family, and I also do some very observational material, like about Amber Alerts,” says Mason. “You notice when they give out Amber Alerts they only kidnap the little angel in the family, the one that everybody loves and misses? Why don’t we ever hear about them kidnapping bad-ass children? I think people don’t report those Amber Alerts.”
While he’s opened for such comic luminaries as Tom Papa, Paul Mooney and Dave Attell, Mason’s biggest thrill was meeting groundbreaking African-American comic Dick Gregory with his mother. He recalls, “She hugged Gregory so tight, she practically molested him.”
“It’s an honor to just be performing at the Ice House because it’s a legendary club,” says Mason. “I’ve done a lot of tours for the military, and you’re out with these guys like in [the Oscar-winning film] ‘The Hurt Locker’ have been really blown up for their country by IEDs and we’re crying in Korea having drinks talking about it. They say ‘What about your life?” and I can’t compete with that. What do I say? ‘My agent won’t call me back?’ It’s great to be able to entertain the troops, but the Ice House will just be pure fun.”
Vargus Mason headlines at 8 pm tonight at the Ice House, 24 N. Mentor Ave., Pasadena. Tickets are $5. Call (626) 577-1894 or visit icehousecomedy.com.