Starting out on Whose Line is it Anyway

Whose Line has been the most amazing gig for me.  We started out doing six hybrid episodes, shot in America but with the British host.  We ended up doing 216 episodes over eight seasons with Drew Carey as the host.  It was the most fun, intense, crazy job I’ve ever had.

I got the audition through Ron West, who I knew from The Second City in Chicago, and had become a Whose Line producer.  I’ve played lots of live improv with almost every improv group in Chicago and L.A.  I auditioned with Brad Sherwood and Wayne Brady, and we all got hired out of it.


When we started out, I was the only musician, but then they added Linda Taylor on guitar.  Later on we also had horn players sometimes. I didn’t know Linda before she auditioned, but I could tell from the minute we started playing together that we were going to get along great. We've done lots of projects together since then. 


We would tape over a three day weekend, and did tons of games that would later get cut into the shows.  And yes, we were really improvising, but no, they’re not that funny all the time. The secret is in the editing. Some of the games would go well, some not so well; that’s the nature of improv. (And actually, if something went really badly, they would keep it, because that can be funny too!)  And although we were good, the editing made us look more brilliant than we actually are.


We had lots of guest stars in later seasons.  Richard Simmons was of course totally crazy! But my favorites were Sid Caesar, who was a perfect gentleman and flirted with Linda and I, and Florence Henderson, who we'd all I’d grown up watching on The Brady Bunch.


Paul May 10, 2015 @08:52 pm
You're a talented musician and do a great job on Whose Line is it Anyway! My favourite piece was the Hoedown and wish they would bring it back although I'm sure Ryan is not missing it! lol… Which of the cast makes you laugh the most? It's fascinating listening to Wayne makeup songs like he does. Some of them are really good! He must be fun to work with. Just recently learned about the Sweet Potatoes. They have a great sound! Keep up the great work and sound!
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