Stelling: "We are in a long-distance relationship, my boyfriend and I, so as you can imagine, I'm constantly looking for a new relationship."
Burke: "The world is going to end, and we know this, apparently, because the Mayan calendar ends in December 2012. And if you believe that, that's fine. That's cool. My question is, why is this the only thing we listen to the Mayans about?"
Their day jobs (needed because their CDs haven't sold a million copies yet)
Stelling: "I chose a job (at Intelligentsia Coffee in LA) that is way too intense for my own good. It's way too consuming. I think I'm ready to take more of a risk of putting myself out there on (acting) auditions and getting that side of things rolling, more than just the safety of a day job."
Burke: "I'm sort of like a freelance editorial jack-of-all-trades: proofreading and copy editing and some writing. It's almost too steady now."
Telfer: "I'm a comedy writer. I don't think I'm supposed to say that to press, but it's a good job. It's a humor publication, I think I can say that. It's like advertising comedy."
On the place of the comedy album in the modern world
Telfer: "I do disagree with people who think — this has become sort of a new meme — that podcasts are replacing comedy albums. I think that they are very different. When you listen to a comedy album, you are definitely trying to picture yourself in that audience."
Burke: "I think it's got a currency that it hasn't had in years. I never heard people talk about comedy bits the way they (do) now. A friend of mine just cited me this bit from a recent Patton Oswalt album. Maybe I'm just more attuned to it now, but I feel like you're getting fans of comedy albums now. For instance, I love that James Adomian has put out an album ('Low Hangin Fruit'). I really hope that makes him a star. I really think he's amazing. He's just unstoppable."
Stelling: "The fact that anybody can do a CD, I don't think it fits in with any sort of goal hierarchy. I think it's to try a project for yourself and your fans. … My hopes for it are to capture those jokes at arguably the best time I was telling them and also before I started hating them and they died. And also in the hopes that cities I'll never get to might see it on iTunes or wherever. I'll have physical copies, too, for when I go to clubs. Hopefully it'll be a way for me to make a little extra money when I'm on the road. So that's the practical side of it."
The unsolicited — but relevant and perhaps even obligatory — Louis C.K. reference
Stelling: "Louis C.K. was talking about how he did material for, like, eight years, and he just hated himself, hated everything — this was before his wild success — and he read where George Carlin was saying he was asked how he does so many specials, and (Carlin) was like, 'Every year, I write a new special. That's the challenge.' So Louis C.K. was like, 'Yeah, I'm gonna do that.' And he scrapped the stuff that he'd been holding on to for eight years, and he had no place to go but take this challenge. … So I, of course, don't think I can do that, but it is sort of an indicator of what it means to become a better comic, what it can do for you creatively."
Burke: "Not that we're all going to be Louis C.K. and turn out another hour (of stand-up) every year …"
Telfer: "There's all this stuff that Louis C.K. did right (making and selling a special on his own), and I think most of it does not apply to mid- or low-level-popularity comedians like myself. We're a long way from that being an option for people like me who are barely making, like, below minimum wage at this. I think I make more at stand-up than most people in Chicago, and still if that were my only source of income I would be far below the poverty line. The one thing that did come in handy was (Louie C.K.) sort of announced, 'Hey, pirates, could you please leave me alone a little bit on this and not put it up?' Because then when people did put it up on those (piracy) sites, they got reamed out and, like, threatened: 'Didn't you read Louis C.K.'s thing, where he thanked you not to do that?' Whereas I think most albums, comedy and music, nobody cares at all."
So can you still perform material from an album live after it's out?
Stelling: "I think the general consensus is, you lay it down on an album, you don't do it anymore. Of course, that's terrifying, and I'd like to think I will still be doing some of the material from the album because it's some of my strongest stuff."
Burke: "I don't know that I will never do that material again, because it's, like, 50 minutes. To be honest, there's stuff on there that I just really enjoy doing. I just have a fun time actually telling the story, and it just makes me laugh to tell it."
Telfer: "If people are paying $10 to have something they can listen to in their car, on their iPod when they're jogging, in the office while they're working, they don't want to then see me live and be like, 'Boy, this theater event is exactly like being on a treadmill.' That's not appealing to me. I don't know that it would be appealing to other people."
Burke: "For me it was a little frustrating. The flow of that material, it was, I think, the best order I'd ever put it in. It is good. It's a real sort of impetus to write more stuff and to get the newer stuff you have into sort of a more final state."
Telfer: "I just think, creatively, it's good to put a bow on something and set it aside when you're happy with it. An album is a nice excuse to do it."