You Need To Know
About Jo Koy
By Carmela Mateo
1. His mom Josie loves his jokes.
She does not get mad about them, she laughs along. “If I did it in a disrespectful way, she would not appreciate them, but what I do is shine a light on her and she loves it!” He says that his mom jokes also resonate with a lot of people regardless if they are Filipino or not, because, hey, that’s the way moms are all over the world.
2. He grew up in Pampanga.
Jo Koy was known as Joseph Glenn Herbert back then, and he enjoyed a lot of things that Filipino kids did with a simple childhood. He loves Filipino food and can throw down on sinigang, kalderata, chicken afritada, monggo, shrimp, pancit bihon.
3. He busted his chops to build his career.
When he first started doing standup comedy 28 years ago, one of his dreams was to perform in the Philippines. “I wanted to do a show where people knew who I was and they were coming to see me, they were coming to see Jo Koy Live in the Philippines,” he shares. He took to the stage when he was in High School and had one of his first gigs at a Las Vegas coffee house. He dropped out of college to pursue a comedy career in LA and took a lot of odd jobs in between. “You can just imagine the journey it took me to get here, it is overwhelming,” he recalls. He conceptualized his Netflix special back in 2014 and it was shot in 2016. He describes it was a long process, and the immediate reaction was so cool.
4. He thinks Filipinos are fun and funny.
One of the things that he loves about Filipino culture is that families often get together to have fun. “Filipinos love to laugh. One thing we like to do is entertain. At our home parties, I would be cracking jokes or my sister would be singing, if not us, a cousin would be dancing,” he says.