The Leaky Wiki Team strikes again by stalking their next celebrity. Barret Eugene Hansen aka Dr. Demento dates back to the ages of prehistoric radio. This celebrity brought national attention to musicians like Spike Jones, Benny Bell, Tom Lehrer, and the world renowned "Weird Al" Yankovic. The doctor was followed and eventually he finally gave in to the questions.
TLW: How long have you been in the Biz?
DRD: I've been Dr. Demento since 1970. Before that, some college and other non-commercial radio appearances dating back to 1959, my freshman year at Reed College.
TLW: Before the Youtubes, mass emails, and fancy Facebooks, How were musicians getting a hold of you?
TLW: When did you first decide you wanted to be a part of comedy?
DRD: You could say that started with the first time I heard Spike Jones, when I was four years old. I always collected funny songs along with everything else. But it was only after the Dr. Demento Show had been launched as a program of rare rock & roll oldies, and I noticed 1) that I got a lot of requests for novelty records and other comedy, and 2) that the more of that I played, the more popular the show got, that I realized that funny music was my true calling.
TLW: What other jobs have you had in your years of growing up in life?
DRD: Dishwasher, busboy, shipping clerk for a publisher, night attendant at a mortuary, cab driver, and various jobs for record companies large and small.
TLW: Give us a little laugh, What's the funniest moment you've experienced?
DRD: My live interview with John Cleese was very funny. The time on the air at KMET that I tried to sit down on a chair that wasn't there was very funny to those who saw it. There were a few hilarious moments backstage while touring with Weird Al - you had to be there.
TLW: Do you read Satire? How about watching any shows?
DRD: I don't watch a whole lot of TV but the Simpsons are peerless. National Lampoon ruled in the 1970s.
Fake news stories are not my favorite form of humor but The Onion does that nicely. They had a nice piece on me in their book "The Tenacity of the Cockroach."
I revere most the musical satirists -- Lehrer, Zappa, Randy Newman for starters.
TLW: Do you have any advice for anyone aspiring to be a part of comedy?
DRD: Get other people's reactions to what you do -- perform live for others if possible, or play your tapes or videos for them and watch their reactions.
If you have any music you'd like to share you can reach him via email or snail mail.
PO Box 884 Culver City, CA 90232