The after-work set in Midtown Manhattan—the posh ones who knew about hotelier Ian Schrager’s new 5-star boutique hotel, The Times Square Edition—enjoyed a cold drink on a particularly warm spring day in the City.
And although they had cozied up to the hotel bar on a random Tuesday, expecting a strong cocktail or two, they had no idea that their bartender would be none other than Jamie Foxx himself. He served martinis, offered up shots to just about any and everyone and even invited some ladies behind the bar for a quick dance session. At one point during the evening, he had the deejay turn off his hits to do an impromptu freestyle rap battle.
No, Foxx isn’t switching careers. Instead, it’s part of his longstanding partnership with Grey Goose, which is celebrating its new Live Victoriously platform that hopes to encourage us to let loose a little more and live in the moment.JAMIE MCCARTHY/GETTY IMAGES FOR GREY GOOSEJAMIE MCCARTHY/GETTY IMAGES FOR GREY GOOSE
Foxx said the partnership, where he’s essentially “having fun and hobnobbing,” made sense.
“And maybe I’ll do a joke or two out there. You know? Because now I’m about to do another stand-up tour,” he revealed to ESSENCE, later noting that he plans to call the tour Kill the Comedian.
Foxx said he was inspired to return to the stage after 16 years thanks to a conversation at Eddie Murphy’s house.
“I was over in Texas. I was at Eddie Murphy’s house. It was Eddie Murphy, Jimmy Kimmel, Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle…and we were all at Eddie Murphy’s house, crazy,” he said in awe of his own memory. “So…I mean, every comedian; everybody was at his house.”
“And we were just talking about how [if you want to be] a comedian, you have to not be successful,” Foxx said, setting up the joke. “Even when I was looking at Eddie’s house, I was like, ‘Damn, Eddie’—because Eddie was talking about getting back out [on the road]—I said, ‘But your house is too clean. It’s too perfect.’ Even his game room; all his games worked. You know, you gotta have one game out of order. At least Ms. Pacman gotta be out of order.”
It’s why the Texas native still has two rooms in his home that despite his daughter’s insistence, he refuses to finish. He wants to be reminded of the time when he didn’t have the million-dollar mansion or the Academy Award or the Grammy Awards.
But it wasn’t just that conversation at his Dreamgirls co-star’s house that has him working with writers and itching to get back on the road. Foxx, who’s teased a tour previously, said it’s the right time.
“I’ve always said stand-up has to do with time. You gotta live a little bit so your stories make more sense,” he explained. “So with all the different things that are going on now, I gotta come back and give my take on it.”
“I look to Rock to see what his take is on things. I look to Chappelle. I look to George Lopez, D.L. Hughley, all my guys. So I feel like I got a fresh take and a funny take,” Foxx added.
And don’t expect for Foxx to get too heavy into politics—even though political commentary is the comedy du jour, especially with the upcoming presidential elections in 2020.
“I don’t wanna do all that. I just wanna have fun; talk that sh-t,” he admitted. “Show up to the show wanting to have fun [and] not too heavy. [I want fans to say,] ‘Where the weed at? Where the drink at? What are we doing?’ When’s the last time you did that?”
BY JOI-MARIE MCKENZIE,ESSENCE