Daddy-Less Issues is a podcast created and hosted by orphan comedians Amber Rollo and Chanel Ali, with the aim of opening up discussion about the experiences of losing one or both parents, whilst also investigating the effects that this can have on an artist’s outlook and process.
This podcast discusses topics that are often seen to be too heavy or sensitive for casual conversation, but Rollo and Ali are challenging this presumption by producing such a fascinating and largely upbeat show. MoodyComedy spoke to Amber and Chanel to find out more about Daddy-Less Issues…
What spurred you to start The Daddy-less Issues podcast?
We kept seeing this pattern of orphans talked about in fiction but not in real life. Fairy tales, comic books and movies are filled with stories about orphans that are fantastic and magical, we wanted to show that real life orphans are pretty fantastic and magical themselves.
What, for both of you, does it mean to be an orphan?
In the nitty gritty definition sense, we go by the UN definition of orphan “a child who has lost one or more parents through death or abandonment.” But in a general more spiritual sense, it means we are enterprising independent kick ass hustlers, but who like also need love too.
How do you think being an orphan has affected your career choices and comedy style?
We have found that we are a bit more free to talk about whatever we like on stage, compared to other comics who struggle with parental tsk tsking.
Have you discovered anything surprising about being an artist without parents as you’vebeen making this podcast?
We’ve discovered so many things, but our favorite is a sentiment best stated by Armistead Maupin “there are biological families, and then there are logical families” and we are both growing beautiful and supportive logical families. We have enjoyed the freedom to pursue our dreams and define success without the pressure or judgment that is often accompanied by two parent households.
What is the most difficult aspect about talking to people about potentially painful subjectssuch as losing a parent?
Often guests have never openly talked about this stuff with others who truly understand, sometimes they get so swept up in that release that they don’t want to stop talking about the past traumas. One of the hardest most delicate parts is to move the conversation forward into the present: what they are doing now, what tools have they picked up to self-parent and how are they thriving.
What has been the most valuable thing you have gained or learned since beginning thispodcast?
We love learning about all the famous orphans from history, it is really inspirational to hear all their stories and at the same time seeing our guests making history, in real time, right in front of us.
Who would be your dream future guest?
That’s a hard question, there are so many amazing orphans. Someone we are reaching for right now is Tiffany Haddish, she is killing as an orphan comedian and we love that. But a real dream dream, Obama or Madonna (both orphans).