When talk show maven Sherri Shepherd and sitcom actress Kym Whitley bring the live iteration of their Two Funny Mamas podcast to Bensalem’s Xcite Center at Parx Casino on May 20 and Wilmington’s Grand Opera House on May 21, the impromptu comedic showcase will be a wild return to form for Shepherd.
Before she was an integral part of ABC’s ‘The View’ in 2006, then the host of her own syndicated talk show, ‘Sherri’, in 2022, Shepherd was a stand-up comedian throughout the 1990s whose first, funny acting roles came courtesy a regular spot on ‘The Jamie Foxx Show’. Since that time of her break out, not only has Shepherd become a comedic talk giant, she’s made herself one of television’s most relatable icons.
Shepherd spoke with Metro Philadelphia about just how likable she’s become, and how that affects her comedy.
It strikes me that no matter what you have done, or do, people simply love you. Why do you believe that you are so likable?
Oh geez (laughs). That scares me. I would say that it comes from people having an easy time relating to me. I might know a lot of celebrities, but I’m the same woman who got addicted three times. I may run in big star circles, but I’ve been in jail, and I can recall those times like it was yesterday. I love to make people laugh – I need to do it – because I feel better when they feel better.
You have had your ‘Sherri’ program for a little under a year now. How has it been running your own talk show?
It’s surreal. I still question myself to whether I’m always doing the right thing, or whether people will still want to come to this party I’m throwing, or is it time to go. As long as people want this, I will bring it to them.
What sort-of stand-up comedian were you at your start?
Scared (laughs). I was terrified to get onstage, but once I was up there, I just loved it so much. My material was so elementary – I did a lot of characters, which I loved. People in my family that resonated with me. As I got more confident, I got less scared.
No primary inspiration or influences?
There was nobody. When I started comedy, I was sheltered. I came from a really strict religion, didn’t watch much TV. I meandered into the comedy lane by myself, and made friends along the way. People like Spike Lee, Eddie Murphy and the Wayans would come to my shows, and that was great. But I didn’t have those usual inspirations – I just got onstage, and did it.
How did ‘Two Funny Mamas’, as a weekly podcast, come together in the first place?
We knew nothing about podcasts – I just wanted to work with Kim. We’ve been friends for over 30 years, and have chemistry. But she kept dragging her feet, kept saying ‘no.’ Finally I did all the research on trademarks, LLCs and guaranteed her that we’d make money without her having to do anything, and she said ‘yes.’ We talked to Jamie Foxx and Kevin Hart about being the producers, when the pandemic hit. Kim and I live 5 minutes from each other, and, with people in their houses – three years ago on Mothers’ Day – we could have an audience. People from all over the world tell us that our silliness and our unscripted behavior got them through Covid… people need our craziness.
What sort-of stand-up comedian are you now? What’s funny to you?
My son is always funny to me. Getting divorces from my husbands is funny to me. Getting cheated on – I’m very self-deprecating. It’s funny to talk about getting older; I embrace that. No matter how much people say that our 50s is the new 30s, my body tells me differently. Nope. The more I talk about this onstage, the more confident I get and the funnier it is for everybody.
To purchase tickets to Two Hot Mamas Live, visit sherrishowtv.com