Bob and Jim first performed at the Edinburgh Fringe in 1994; nearly 20 years down the line they are still on top form and returning with their 2013 show ‘Bob and Jim: Two Stars’. Bob and Jim took a break from comedy for a few years, but made one of many glorious comebacks in 2008 with their radio series ‘From Land’s End to John O’Groats: In the Footsteps of My Grandfather’s Motorcycle’. They then debuted their first Fringe full hour in 2011 with ‘Modern Urges’, and performed in 2012’s epic Underbelly show ‘Go!’ when they were also finalists in the Musical Comedy Awards.
When asked about my “top ten” shows from last year’s Fringe, Bob and Jim are always at the top of my list. They tell jokes that are cheeky for children, but on another level shockingly hilarious for adults. They juxtapose silly with clever and throw in many musical numbers to the mix, making them a not-to-be-missed comedy duo. I was lucky enough to catch up with the pair before they embark on another Edinburgh adventure.
SF: Hello Bob and Jim how are you?
BAJ: Not bad, except that Bob lost his gnome and we’re upset about Syria too. Here’s how we’ve coped with the gnome situation:
SF: Tell me a bit about your act?
BAJ: We’re an old school musical double act. Traditional, yet modern. Popular with some people’s mums.
SF: How long have you been doing comedy for?
BAJ: 6,247 hours.
SF: Where is your favourite place to perform?
BAJ: Generally in a comedy venue, but you can’t be picky. Last year, we performed 26 shows in a converted classroom in Scotland. We’ve done churches, hotels, schools and hospitals. We also like Hamburg.
SF: This is not your first time at the Edinburgh Fringe, is it?
BAJ: Our first time was way back in 1994. We did a feminist physical theatre new writing piece about violence against women. It was very moving. Jim was on the organ. Bob was on Katie Everard.
SF: Your Fringe show 2013 is called ‘Bob and Jim – Two Stars’, where does this title come from and what does it mean?
BAJ: There are lots of stars up at the Fringe, but we’re lucky enough to have two stars in the same show – that’s us. Bob and Jim. Most sketch groups and musical duos are lucky if they’ve got one.
SF: On the advert for your show you claim to feature pop music, groupies, anarchy, showbiz anecdotes, jokes, heavy metal, acting, medieval folk songs, the odd bit of mime, prizes, a 40 minute lull and a ukulele – how do you squeeze it all in?
BAJ: We didn’t write the advert. But, we do go at it hell for leather. And we have a drink to keep us energized. Also, there may not be prizes.
SF: What other acts do you recommend from this year’s Fringe?
BAJ: Ask us again in September when we find out who’s recommended us. And of course, Dave, Mike, Susie, both Brians and Barbara (but she’s not really an act).
SF: What are your plans for Bob and Jim on the lead up to the Fringe Festival?
BAJ: Try and get a few early nights in. We have embarked upon a health regime, which has meant cutting back on tiring rehearsals and walking to the pub.
SF: Where can we find out more information about Bob and Jim?
BAJ: If you hang around the Wetherspoons, you’ll usually hear an opinion about Bob and Jim. Alternatively, the Post Office have a form. Then there’s always, www.bobandjim.co.uk, www.youtube.com/user/BobandJimUK, www.facebook.com/bob.andjim.1, and www.twitter.com/bobandjimuk.