Ralphie May chills, thrills in Bonnaroo comedy matinees


Evan Brown // Contributing Writer

As the temperature rose, so did the laughter as Nashville-based Ralphie May headlined Bonnaroo’s Comedy Theatre Saturday afternoon.

“This festival wasn’t made for me,” the plus-sized May quipped in the first of two back-to-back matinees. “It’s too damn hot.”

The Comedy Theatre’s air conditioning wasn’t the only reason fans were clamoring to enter. They knew they were in for a huge set of laughs.

May opened his set by asking the audience what the big deal was about Bruce Jenner, now Caitlyn Jenner, after a recent sex change.

“I’ve always been a man with big tits and a big ass,” he said. “It’s not that special.”

Currently touring across the country promoting his Netflix special “Unruly,” May also ridiculed the no-smoking policy in the comedy tent by saying, “It’s a festival — that is what you’re supposed to do.

“There’s two cops to 350 of you,” he said. “You’ll be OK.”

Comedy roast legend Jeffery Ross took the stage after opening act Mark Normand did a great job of warming the crowd up. Ross’ newest TV special Jeff Ross Roasts Inmates: Live at Brazos County Jail was set to premiere later Saturday night on Comedy Central.

While the special is obviously intended to make the audience laugh, Ross also hopes it draws attention toward the life-altering marijuana laws around the country.

“There are people in prison for possessing less marijuana than what I came here with,” Ross said.

But the real treat for fans came when Ross asked the audience for volunteers to come up on the stage so they could become the latest victims of the legendary roast comic. Fans feverishly began to make their way toward the front of the stage, genuinely excited to take the verbal abuse. Ross delivered just that by riffs ranging from shirt selection to sexual activity.

“I’m so glad,” Ross teased one audience member, “you were able to fit in your little sister’s shirt.”

This article was published in cooperation with the Seigenthaler News Service. To see the version of this article that ran in The Tennessean,  click here.

To see our full archive of Bonnaroo coverage, click here.

For more updates, follow us at www.mtsusidelines.com, on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on Twitter/Instagram at @Sidelines_Life.

To contact Lifestyles editor John Connor Coulston, email lifestyles@mtsusidelines.com.

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