How To Keep Your Sense of Humor with Detroit Comedian T. Barb

The local comic, entrepreneur and “retired hoodrat” joins CultureShift to talk about how to keep a sense of humor in a world that doesn’t seem very funny and her new vegan cookbook.

How does Detroit comedian Tiffany “T. Barb” Barber keep a sense of humor about everything the world has thrown at her and everyone else in the past year?

“For me, I understand that laughter is like medicine,” says Barber, who has become one of the rising stars emerging from the city’s homegrown talent pool of comics. “If only for a second, I can take someone’s mind away from what’s going on with laughter, that’s what keeps me motivated.”

Click the audio player to hear the full interview with Tiffany “T. Barb” Barber on CultureShift:

Courtesy of Tiffany "T. Barb" Barber
Courtesy of Tiffany “T. Barb” Barber

Comedy shows are a hard thing to produce in a global pandemic, so Barber has turned to her Instagram to perform skits and interact with fans in a new virtual space. She’s also producing the second season of the “Gettin’ Off” comedy series on Amazon Prime, which highlights Detroit comics.

“When a person is a comedian, they’re really dependent on live audiences to make their money. Comedians are suffering right now and many couldn’t file for unemployment,” says Barber. “This was a time for comedians to test their skills in other ways with acting, skits or coming up with new and creative ways to get the message across.”

One of those new ways for Barber was writing her own cookbook, available via her website. “The Hoodrat Kitchen Vegan Cookbook” presents her spin on vegan dishes.

“Vegan food can be considered drab or bland or just salad and I was like, look, I’m from the hood. I gotta spice this thing up!” says Barber.

Discover Detroit’s local comedy scene with CultureShift:

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  • Ryan Patrick Hooper
    Ryan Patrick Hooper is the award-winning host of "In the Groove" on 101.9 WDET-FM Detroit’s NPR station. Hooper has covered stories for the New York Times, NPR, Detroit Free Press, Hour Detroit, SPIN and Paste magazine.