Today (June 16th), the television show “Martin” will be celebrated with a reunion show featuring the cast on BET Plus. The show, which aired on Fox for 5 seasons starting in 1992 still remains in syndication, 25 years after its last episode. Accomplished comedian Tommy Davidson, who had one of the most rememberable performances as Varnell Hill stops by the Russ Parr Morning Show to talk about the show’s rich legacy.
We also learn about Davidson’s foray into Jazz, with the single “Sweet Reunion” featuring Dave Koz. Did Davidson and others know how iconic this show would be? Listen below:
Read the Interview Below:
Russ Parr: Ladies and gentlemen on the line right now His name is Mr. Tommy Davidson the funniest guy on the phone right now. He is the funniest guy on the phone. And I say that with all love.
Tommy Davidson: Funniest guy on the phone right now.
RP: Yes. How are you doing Tommy?
TD: Hey, man, everything is good, man. So good to talk to you, brother.
RP: Oh my god. It’s been a long time. Yeah, man. And so I know you’ve been talking to people about you got a number of things going on. So we’re gonna get into those. But I want to talk about what everybody’s talking about right now. The Martin Reunion. Because I remember the time he played Varnell Hill. On the mark. Great character.
TD: Miss me. Yes. autograph. Right.
RP: Hilarious. How many years? Has it been since you’ve been on this show?
TD: 27 years ago, believe it or not? And we came from DC and you’re well aware of that. We met at Garmins Comedy Club? It open mic and guess who else was there?
TD: Dave Chappelle. We all started like the exact same week, you know?
RP: Wow. That’s crazy. See, because one of the things is, in all three, you guys are from the DMV area. And so I mean, in all three, y’all blew up. So it’s a very beautiful thing. I got to ask you, what was it like to work with Martin in that environment and describe your first day on the set?
TD: When I first got to the set, Martin it was yelling at people, you know “You get over here! You get over here! You shut up!” I was like “Martin when did you start talking to people like this?” He was like you don’t understand. You know this is my TV show. And no, I said, I have a TV show, too. He said, Nah, man, yours is different. So I said, Okay, it’s gonna be real different when do the scene. And I got into this scene. And it wasn’t, nobody knew what I was gonna say next.
TD: It was like 100%. You asked me Do I have a pool? I said, No, I have a lake. You know?
RP: Did he? Did he accept the challenge?
TD: When you look at that, look at his face. The next time you see that episode, look at his face. He was trying so bad not to laugh. I broke his neck. Okay.
RP: Well, because I heard you know, at that time, you know, Martin could be a little volatile. And, you know, this is his shot. So you can expect him to be very protective of what he’s doing there. You know what I’m saying? So, so I understand, you know why he was like, Man, this, this ain’t happening. But I do want to say the show at that time. Did you guys ever think it was going to be iconic?
TD: No, I did not. I knew that Martin was really good. And being a friend of mine from DC, I just love and adore this man. But to this day, it’s still syndicated man.
RP: Yeah, so now you’re singing to?
TD: Russ, I’ve actually I’ve established myself as a smooth jazz singer.
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TD: Yeah. Yeah. My single was out in January of this year.
RP: So you’re doing a one-night? A one-night-only show in Philadelphia? Right. The 17th.
TD: Most certainly. And you know, I love Philly. Second City for DC you know, absolutely.
RP: right down the street. You know, so that’s a very beautiful thing. You’re on Earthquake’s Father’s Day Comedy Show. You know, and I’m proud of my brother Earthquake is from DC to is this a DC thing?
TD: Father’s Day is a very rare one for us. Because, you know, we will get nothing.
RP: Hilarious. It’s going to be I think the Academy of Music 240 South Broad Street. So, uh, Nah, man. I’m looking forward. I will. I am definitely Tommy coming up for that. You’re one of the few comedians that actually literally makes me cry. You cry. You cry when you watch time. You know, we all are here just trying to make it happen, man the best that we can. So I’m proud of you, man. I can’t keep doing your thing. Looking forward to seeing you later this month. And of course, Tommy Davidson. The Martin reunion is going to be going down on BET on the 16th It’s today. Y’all make sure you check it out. Tommy’s Good talking to you brother.
TD: You too man. Love you brother. Enjoying watching you grow man and flourish.
RP: Thank you, man. I appreciate it. You take care of yourself, man.
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