My column on page four of this week’s Suburban on standup comic SugarSammy was a long time in coming. Sure, I have mentioned him in the paper over the years, but this was my first opportunity to devote the lead item of my article to him.
I am not the only one of course. Since the launch of his You’re Gonna Rire series at The Olympia Theatre on February 29, his exposure has been above the charts. He’d already been winning many new friends before this because of (A) his raw talent and (B) his perfect bilingualism. The son of immigrant parents, he is a Bill 101 kid : forced to go to French school. In his case, the experience no doubt helped make him into what he is today.
Sammy is a proud resident of the Town of Hampstead. Yes, at the age of 36 he still lives at home with his parents and makes no apologies for that. “Honestly, I know it is out of fashion, but I love spending time with my parents,” he told me. “No one I tell this to understands.”
Sammy notes that neither of his parents drive a car, so he takes them where they need to go. “You should see the look on their faces when I operate a GPS,” he laughs
Will he move out? “It sure would give me a whole lot of new material,” he agreed.
Where did he get the nickname “Sugar?” He says it goes back to his McGill days. “I promoted events on campus and people started calling me that,” he says. “It stuck.”
I just love the video of his appearance in 2010 on Le Gala des Oliviers, (the French comedy awards). Check out the video yourself and see the warmth the francophone community feels for him.
His bestselling DVD "Sugar Sammy Live in Concert: Direct from Montreal" was the Number One selling comedy DVD on Amazon.ca for five straight weeks and continues to post impressive sales. The concert featured in the DVD, currently part of Air Canada's on-air entertainment program, was the first special starring a Canadian stand-up on HBO Canada.
As we learn from his website, the Canadian airwaves are not the only home for his smooth and always charismatic style of comedy, with TV specials already on his résumé from Showtime Arabia, The Comedy Channel, The Comedy Network, CTV and Dutch TV network NTR. Meanwhile on the Web, his stand-up videos have had over three million views. Part of a new breed of young, global, accessible performers, Askmen.com recently dubbed him "Comedy's New Rock Star."
Sugar Sammy performs in four languages (English, French, Punjabi and Hindi), and travels the world, performing to fans in cities and countries as varied as London, the U.S., Dubai, South Africa, Singapore, Holland, Australia and of course, Canada.
I can't wait to see how high this man's star rises!