Jewish Canadian Comic Heavvy Weighs in on Success in Los Angeles
“Heavvy ain’t a look it’s a lifestyle” says Heavvy aka Jeff Danson after recently dropping 80 pounds. This 32-year-old Jewish Canadian comedian and “former fat boy” (his words, not ours) based in Los Angeles California is a self proclaimed “flourisher.” Heavvy preaches that you have to “practice your passions until it becomes your profession.” Heavvy started at New York comedy club in 2009 & was the writer for twitter accounts like the Iron Sheik. After building his stand-up between Toronto, Montreal, New York & Los Angeles, Heavvy sold his first TV show Hungry Hungry Heavvy to MTV & moved to Los Angeles.
His monthly sold out stand-up show at the Hollywood Improv “Heavvy Sets” has featured drop-ins from likes of Adam Sandler, Bill Burr, Sara Silverman & more.
When he’s not doing stand-up, he’s eating or working on his food-inspired jewelry and clothing company, raising money and awareness for the non-profit organization NO KID HUNGRY, or promoting one of the restaurant items named after him like the Heavvy burger at The Burger Priest in Toronto or the Heavvy sandwich served in L.A. at the Yeastie Boys Truck and Wexler’s Deli.
“HEAVVY represents so much more than weight. Heavvy represents accepting yourself for who are in order to fully flourish. Based on values of cherishing simple aspects of life like love, positivity and the privilege to eat, there’s only one Heavvy and that’s me,” says the comic.
“The best aspects of my career are the people I’ve been able to call family along with the experiences on the road,” he says.
“I’m far from home so building friendships that turn to family has been so comforting and helpful. I have a whole life in America now.” But staying afloat, positive and focused on his goals in stand up-while living in LA has been tough. “New York is way better for stand up,” he admits. “Not knocking L.A. clubs, it’s just different here. Also I feel like everyone in L.A. is not telling the truth!”
Heavvy says his expectations of L.A. were initially too high. “I wish someone told me to lower my expectations. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in this business it’s that nothing comes quick, easy or unearned. I’ve been doing stand up almost 10 years and I still think I suck. Maybe I do!!! But I’m not stopping,” he quips.
Though he hosts his own comedy roundup, Heavvy doesn’t consider himself a success just yet “because there are so many things I still need to achieve and I don’t think I’ll ever be satisfied or done.”
“But if you told me 6 years ago I’d be living in L.A. doing what I’m doing, I probably wouldn’t have believed you either. Nothing has been more satisfying than getting girls because of the recognition! Just playing, nothing has been more satisfying than the people I’ve inspired & the money and awareness I’ve raised alongside George Ricciardelli for the organization No Kid Hungry,” he says. The organization hosts an annual stand-up show/fundraising dinner in New York at the renowned Hunt & Fish Club. and has also hosted fundraiser dinners at the Jon and Vinny’s in L.A. The stand-up event features the biggest names in comedy as they raise money and awareness to feed underprivileged children in need both domestically & worldwide. Their next event is on October 1st in New York at the Hunt & Fish Club.