Alex Williamson won bogan hearts the world-over with his YouTube hit, The Loosest Aussie Bloke Ever, and has since been fired from red carpet duties, dubbed “too stoned for radio”, disappointed fans by refusing to eat from bins and contracted a fungal infection in Scotland. His next stellar career move will see Alex perform his latest show Make the World a Banter Place at Riverway Arts Centre in Townsville. We caught up with him for a very honest chat.
You’ve been performing to sold out crowds at, what looks like every major comedy festival across the country this year.
Yeah, yeah. In Australia and also over in Edinburgh. I went over there and did some shows and walked around in bare feet against everyone’s recommendations but, I’m Aussie, so fuckin whatever.
How’d it work out for you?
Nice. And you’ve got the 16-date tour happening now. How do you keep the show fresh and still feeling conversational, after repeating it so often?
Well because it’s always falling on ears that haven’t heard it before, that’s what excites me. The fact that people haven’t heard the filth that they’re about to hear always pushes me to that next level as far as performing’s concerned. Sometimes people help from the audience – they yell some shit out. I know in North Queensland, people like to have a bit too much to drink, or people order a variety of hallucinogenics or whatever it might be and they yell things out they think are funny, and I yell some shit back and everyone has a good time.
What should people expect from this show?
Oh look – sex, drugs and rock n roll I think is probably the most appropriate thing you can put in print. It’s pretty honest. You get a pretty good glimpse at my personality, who I actually am and what I think about certain things. I assure you, I’m just as loose in person, as I am in the characters, but it’s a little different from that perspective. There’s also some music in there. I play an acoustic ditty that sounds like it should be melting your heart, except the lyrics are about how I haven’t had sex in a long time; I’m on a dry spell. So, if you haven’t had a root in ages, there’ll be something to relate to there as well. Come share a beer with me.
Loosest Aussie Bloke is one of your most popular YouTube videos. Do you find a lot of people try to out-loose you for the title?
When it came out there were a few little homage videos, like Loosest Canadian Ever and some stuff like that. It was usually a brother-sister combo somewhere in a bedroom, doing some shit thing. I watched a few of them, then I just stopped after that. They were fucking awful. But it was nice. It was sweet to see.
I was expecting you to say you set up the Loosest UN Ever or something just then.
I should have. It would have got a pretty big turn out – me, my cat… my bunnies.
So it doesn’t force you to step it up a notch and go and get looser still?
Well people do come up to me on the street and say things like “Oi, go and eat something out of that bin.” And I’m like “What the fuck, no way” and they’re like “Oh, you’re not even loose” and I’m like “No that’s a character and who goes and eats something out of a bin anyway? You go and do it” And usually they’ll go and do it. My fans are that fucking tripped out.
How does that type of Aussie-ism go over on international audiences?
They like it. They just think I’m a big, dumb Aussie. Which I am. But that really hits home for them; they like the Aussiest thing ever. They still think we all wear Akubras and round up sheep. They can’t get their head around sprawling metropolises and all these things that aren’t part of that image it all. They don’t understand it’s just a very small part of Australia that’s rounding up their sheep on horseback. But I’ll sit and play that character for them.
Do you take that Ambassador-type of role fairly seriously as you tour around?
I do. As you said, we discussed the UN before – I haven’t got an invite to the UN yet, but on the World Stage, if I’m representing bogans, I do it well. I make sure I always have a wife-beater in the suitcase or a fluro tradie shirt – I always travel with one of those, in case I need to bring out the bogan at the Louvre in Paris or somewhere you shouldn’t really be boganning it up.
Is that the same on the red carpet? I see you’ve manned some red carpet events in the past?
Well I was interviewing people. Yeah. I didn’t really take that very seriously. When I was working for the mainstream radio station, they get you to ask some pretty mundane questions, so I tried to have some fun with it here and there, but for the most part I would have liked to have been doing some of the creative stuff, been on the other side of the magical red rope. But for what it was, I was a young fella and it was nice. I ended up losing that job because I was just too stoned, but it was nice while it lasted.
You raise a good point there – I always worry I’m asking people the same questions thy’ve heard a million times. How do you come up with fresh interview questions?
Sometimes it’ll be topical like for Planet of the Apes I’d be like “Have you ever…. had a lunch date with a monkey” or something about monkeys. You can’t really ask them about their private life, you can’t ask them about their famous exes or if they’re in the Taylor Swift friendship club. Publicists get all narky about that. I don’t have a publicist anymore, so your questions are ok.
Anything you’d like to add?
Just that I love Townsville. Bring on the backpackers and $2 schooners every night. Usually I’m an AFL guy, but I’ll be an NRL guy for the night I’m in Townsville. I have been before – I went to the casino, and the marina, and the nice spot with all the restaurants. Oh and the hill with Pride Rock, I think it was: I can imagine Simba being held off there a lot.
Catch Alex Williamson in his stand-up show Make the World a Banter Place at Riverway Arts Centre on Friday, 24 November 2017. Click here for tickets.