By tonight, Donald Trump will either be president-elect of the United States or he'll be an orange smear on the pages of a history book we'll all be tempted to toss into an incinerator. If the former happens, it'll be a while until jokes about him are funny (hell, they may be outlawed); if the latter happens, the world is still going to need a break while we recover from mass Post Trump Stress Disorder.
In the interest of giving their election-season gold one last chance to sparkle, a bunch of rising L.A. comedians got together at a house in Hollywood, recorded a comedy album and released it on Bandcamp today; all of the proceeds go to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network "because Donald Trump would probably hate that." We talked to comedian Brandie Posey about Burn This Election.
L.A. Weekly: Can you tell me a little about the album — how'd you get the idea and how'd it go down?
Brandie Posey: I was on tour a few weeks ago and it hit me how much material about this election has been generated by comedians out of how toxic it’s gotten. And as soon as the election is over, all those jokes are mercifully going to be unusable, so I thought we might as well make them mean something! I thought that it’d be hella cathartic to record a bunch of my comedian friends onto an album and then donate the proceeds to a charity that Donald Trump would hate, like RAINN.
Everyone involved in this album stepped up and donated their time, talent and anything else we needed to make this happen. From start to finish, we promoted, recorded, mixed and released this baby in less than two weeks, which is a crazy-fast turnaround for a full album.
We recorded at the An Sho(w) House in Hollywood — a bunch of comedians live together and throw shows there, and I posted about looking for a venue and they stepped up. Their place is great, the walls are covered in show posters from ones they've thrown there, and one of the guys even lives in a little cubby hole upstairs above the living room. Every corner of that house is dedicated to comedy — their backyard is a whole separate venue if needed! If you've seen Viceland's Flophouse, you have some idea how younger comics are living together to keep rent low and create their own spaces to perform. It's an awesome tradition I'm glad I'm a part of.
So we recorded last Wednesday, which happened to be the last night of the World Series. Because the game ran long, the taping turned into an impromptu World Series party, which put everyone in such a fun, weird mood to begin with, since half of the comics on the show don't even like sports. But it was fun to be watching some positive history happen right before recording an album documenting all the negative history that this campaign season created. We bought a few cases of beer, people brought their own snacks and were posted up on couches, chairs and the floor all over the living room. Everyone on the lineup crushed so hard — the energy was so good in the room, everyone was so happy that these jokes were going to actually do some good in a time where we've all felt a little overwhelmed by the news every day.
Do you think, in general, comedians will be bummed if Trump loses because he's such incredible fodder for jokes? Or, like much of the rest of society, do they hope that he just goes the fuck away?
The thing is, Trump jokes are almost too easy to write, and they don't bring any joy to the people writing them. He's a bully and a legitimately bad person who is probably a full-on narcissist psychopath. And the thing about narcissist psychopaths is that they don't care if they're getting negative attention, because it's still attention and they crave it in any form. I think everyone on this album is thankful they're going to get to go back to writing about other things soon.
Actually — are any of the comedians on the recording Trump supporters?
Nope! This album is 100 percent partisan. I potentially would have included some, but I haven't seen any Trump-supporter comics make their case in a way that was funny enough to warrant being on the album, in my opinion. There might be some out there, but I don't know them, and they can record their own album. I wanted this to be a night of positivity that people in line at the polls could listen to on Tuesday while waiting to vote. But everyone that is on it has a completely different perspective across the political spectrum — the lineup is really diverse in terms of gender and race; I was very conscious of that when putting it together.
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Can you talk about some of your favorite bits?
Oh boy, there are so many good ones! Megan Koester recounting the time Trump grabbed her pussy but his fingers were too short to reach her clit. Brodie Reed getting down on one knee to ask Malia Obama to marry him because he needs a father figure made me cry-laugh when he did it. Josh Androsky brought an audience member up onstage to play "Election: The Game Show." Lauren Brown making the case that her deadbeat dad is worse than Donald Trump because he's never even told her she's hot. And Tiny Stills closing the whole thing out with a song she wrote called "Donald Trump Is Getting Nothing for Christmas" while dressed like an elf. It's a really, really fun album that I am incredibly proud of.