Comedian and best-selling author Steve Harvey visited Boston to promote his new daytime television show, premiering on WCVB Channel 5 at 10 a.m. on September 4. Harvey posed with (L-R): Darryl Settles, owner of Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen, where the special VIP taping took place, “CityLine” Host Karen Holmes Ward and WCVB-TV General Manager Bill Fine.
|Steve Harvey entertains the audience at the special VIP event to promote his new daytime television show. Harvey was interviewed on location by WCVB “CityLine” Host Karen Holmes Ward for an upcoming two-part special. (Don West photos)
Comedian Steve Harvey knew a long time ago what he wanted to do with his life.
“I decided when I was 9 years old [to be a comedian], but my parents never came to that decision,” he said to the audience at Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen on Columbus Avenue. Harvey was in town doing a live taping of “CityLine” with WCVB Channel 5’s Karen Holmes Ward in anticipation of his new daytime talk show, “Steve Harvey,” which debuts September 4. Though he will book some celebrity guests on the show, he said “regular folks are best.”
Harvey—now a bestselling author, actor, radio show host, and philanthropist—used to stutter severely. Growing up, no one believed that the tongue-tied young man would end up a top-notch comedian.
“It took me 27 years,” he shared. “The first time I tried stand-up I won an amateur night. The next day I went into my job and quit.” He made $50 that night.
That first month, Harvey earned $125 making people laugh, and that first year he says he made $3,000. Despite his struggles in the beginning, giving up was something he just wouldn’t do. For him, comedy is “almost a necessity.”
He loves it, and when he is doing a good job of it, “it’s indescribable.”
Harvey grew up in Cleveland and admits to getting into his fair share of trouble. ‘The Relationship Guru,’ a title he claims he was forced to carry, is on his third marriage and can clearly recall being homeless and dirt poor.
When he was younger and still playing the field, Harvey said he used to “sleep with his cell phone duct-taped” to his thigh. He juggled women and was still collecting numbers at 40.
Some have given him flack for the success he’s garnered with his two books “Straight Talk, No Chaser: How to Find, Keep, and Understand a Man” and book-turned-movie, “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man.”
Harvey says he’s no expert in relationships, but he is an expert on how men think and behave. “I’ve been practicing being a man my whole life,” he said.
He only wrote the books for his daughters, he told the crowd. He wanted to have something to give them that would help them navigate the dating landscape. “I just didn’t know I had 3 million daughters out there,” he said of the success of his books.
He’s done well hosting “Showtime at the Apollo” and “The Family Feud,” and acting in “Me and the Boys,” “The Steve Harvey Show,” “The Fighting Temptations” and the “Johnson Family Vacation,” as well as doing stand-up in the notoriously funny “The Original Kings of Comedy” with D.L. Hughley, the late Bernie Mac and Cedric the Entertainer.
“Our objective is to make you laugh [so hard] you almost throw up,” said Harvey.
His big personality and humor are on full display during his radio show “The Steve Harvey Morning Show” which airs 6 a.m.-10 a.m. and is “syndicated everywhere but Boston.”
Harvey and his wife, Marjorie, started The Steve and Marjorie Harvey Foundation. “The Steve Harvey Mentoring Weekend for Young Men” is a four-day, three-night program for young men between the ages of 13-18, who live in a single, female-head of household.
There, the boys are taught the principles of manhood. To reach young girls, Mrs. Harvey takes 100 girls for the “Girls Who Rule the World Mentoring Weekend.”
It’s a three-day, two-night program that aims to aid in the development of young girls and provide a forum to expose them to the benefits and the importance of positive self-image and responsible personal conduct.
“God has been so amazing to me,” said Harvey during the taping.
He says that he believes God blesses him so he that he can be a blessing to others. After wrapping up the show, Harvey—who claims the most dangerous thing he’s ever done was to go on safari in Africa—shares what it takes to keep a relationship fresh.
“I have this thing written on my iPad to remind myself to keep dating [Marjorie],” he explains. “If a guy can remember to do all the things he did in the beginning, to not stop holding hands, to not stop telling her how much he’s glad to be with her, then you’ll be all right.”
Born in the Windy City on Aug. 25, 1978, Kel Mitchell began his acting career at the tender age of 12 with the ETA Creative Arts Foundation. A couple of years later, he got the opportunity of a lifetime when he flew to Florida to be a part of a new children's television network that would later become Nickelodeon.
Kel was an original cast member on Nickelodeon's "All That," which enjoyed a successful run from 1994 to 1999. He and Kenan Thompson also co-starred in the spin-off series "Kenan & Kel," as well as in the hit film "Good Burger."
Some of Boston's biggest celebrities helped Urban Improv celebrate its 20th birthday last week at the House of Blues. Governor Deval Patrick, Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, Mayor Thomas Menino and Aerosmith bass player Tom Hamilton, among a slew of others, joined the group's cast for its annual "Banned in Boston" fundraising performance.
Urban Improv is an educational program that helps youths and teaches them, through theater, to tackle difficult issues like violence, bullying and peer pressure in positive ways. At "Banned in Boston" its members and volunteers - including local politicians, entrepreneurs and media personalities - use their theatrical talent to enact parodic skits on stage.
A born hustler from Chicago's South Side, DeRay Davis began his career on the comedy club circuit and was first noticed by Hollywood while onstage at Atlanta's Laffapalooza Festival. Shortly after moving to Los Angeles, he won the Comedy Central Laugh Riots Competition and was subsequently a standout on the Cedric the Entertainer Tour and at the Montréal Just for Laughs Festival.
DeRay's film credits include "Jumping the Broom," "Get Him to the Greek," "Barbershop," "Life as We Know It," "License to Wed," and "Scary Movie 4."