Comedian Alex Reymundo was supposed to perform in the Houston area in August. When plans for that show fell through, Reymundo reached out to each of the fans that had bought tickets. "I could have let the ticket company send out a mass message," he tells us. "Instead I looked up every one of those e-mail address and I sent them a note. The ticket company said, 'You're going to do what?' I told them it was important to me.
"I asked [the fans] to send me their phone number so that I could call them with more information when we set up a new show. I ended up calling about two thirds of them. I told them, 'Hey, I appreciate you spending your money.' Someone comes to the show, brings a date, I know it's easily $50, $60 for the night. All I did was make a few phone calls. A lot of them didn't believe it was me, so I'd have to do a few jokes to prove who I was."
Houston fans will see a mostly new show when Reymundo takes the stage this Saturday. "I'm working on a new hour. I'm about 35 minutes into it. And this is what I'm preaching now: the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth ... according to me. That way I have license to say whatever I like."
Reymundo says he isn't a disciplined writer, and in fact does his best writing on stage. "If something catches my attention, I'll take it and play with it, but the final words won't come to me until I start to play with it on stage. I tend to put myself under pressure that way."
The comedian says one of his strongest skills as a comedian is being a good listener. "I get on stage and listen to the audience's reaction to what I'm saying. Sometimes I'm nasty. Sometimes I'm clean. Sometimes I'm just silly. But one thing I always am, and I think that's what people respond to, is I'm always passionate. If it's me saying that couples need to have sex more, if it's me talking about raising kids and being a good father, or me talking about about how screwed up society is, I'm being 100 percent there."
Reymundo's newest non-comedy venture is his new line of tequila, Number JUAN. A friend, Julio Rejon imports mescal and told Reymundo about a tiny distillery he found in Mexico. "He told me, 'You've got to come taste this tequila, it's the best tequila I've ever tasted.' I went with him and the second I tasted it, I said the exact same thing, 'That's the best tequila I've ever tasted!' There was no U.S. presence for it so right away I started thinking, 'How can we bring this to the United States?'"
After that first visit some four years ago, Reymundo returned to Kentucky where he lives with his family and started talking to industry experts. "I talked to accountants, to all the people you're supposed to talk to when you get into business. Then last January, I said, 'That's enough talking. Let's do this.' The very first thing, I wanted to give it a cool name that you didn't have to be a Latino to pronounce, so we named it Number JUAN.
"It's a tiny little distillery and they're nothing but artists that work there. They put all their heart and passion into what they're making. They won't sacrifice quality for mass production, which was part of the reason they didn't have a U.S. presence. I promised them I would put the same heart and passion into selling it that they put into producing it.
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"I want people to know that nobody asked me to put my name on this. I spent my own penny, I don't have investors, it's just us. And just like the guys who make it, it's all passion. We're going to go bar to bar, bartender to bartender, restaurant to restaurant."
Alex Reymundo performs at 8 p.m. on September 7 at Elegant Hall, 7391 Rankin Road, Humble. For information, call 281-782-0350 or visit Alex Reymundo's website. $20 to $25.