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10 Comics to Watch: Nate Bargatze is Comedy Central’s ‘Magic’ Man

“You make people laugh growing up and stuff,” says Nate Bargatze in his signature laid-back drawl, talking about his first forays into performing. “And you just hope it translates over to people you don’t know.” Bargatze was 23 years old with no standup experience, reading water meters in Nashville, Tenn., when a friend asked if he wanted to move to Chicago and take Second City classes. Bargatze remembers thinking — insert shrug here — “all right, I’ll go.”

Two years later he moved from Chicago to New York, where he found acclaim. His accolades include multiple  latenight appearances on Conan O’Brien and Jimmy Fallon, and a recent Comedy Central special called “Full Time Magic.” His first album, “Yelled at by a Clown,” shot straight to the top of the iTunes and Billboard comedy charts — the titles for Bargatze’s album and standup special are inspired by his genetic gateway to entertainment, his father, who was a clown-turned-comedic magician. He also won the New York and Boston comedy festivals, and has been publicly lauded by fellow comedians Marc Maron and Jim Gaffigan.

With one special in the bag, the standup is working on a new set of material. Recently he met a man who breeds poisonous snakes, and thinks it could become a bit in the future. But although he is thinking ahead, Bargatze also takes time to soak up his accomplishments.

“The first one is so special,” he says, referring to his hour on Comedy Central. “It took 12 years to learn how to be that comic.

Reps: Agency: APA; Management: Apostle; Lawyer: Ginsburg Daniels
Influences: His father, Jerry Seinfeld, Bill Burr, Patrice O’Neal

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