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    John Bishop reveals Jack Whitehall promised him £40 for a gig and then paid him in laughing gas

    John Bishop reveals Jack Whitehall promised him £40 for a comedy gig as a teen and then paid him in laughing gas because he couldn’t afford the fee

    John Bishop has revealed that fellow comedian Jack Whitehall promised him £40 to do a gig but then had to pay him in laughing gas because he couldn’t afford the fee.

    The star, 53, said the then teenage Jack, now 32, lured him to a comedy club he had started in Manchester as the pair were both starting their careers at the time.

    But the event was so unsuccessful that Jack – then studying for a History of Art degree – couldn’t pay the fee and offered John nitrous oxide, so-called ‘hippy crack’, instead of the cash.

    Memories: John Bishop, 53, has revealed that fellow comedian Jack Whitehall promised him £40 to do a gig but then had to pay him in laughing gas because he couldn’t afford the fee

    Liverpudlian John – now one of Britain’s highest paid comedians – recalled how he first met Jack, now also a household name, at London’s famous Comedy Store in the mid 2000s.

    The comedy star had just quit his job as a pharmaceutical salesman for a career as a stand up while Jack was appearing for the first time.

    Speaking on told Gabby Logan’s Mid-Point podcast, John said: ‘I remember I was compere of Jack Whitehall’s first gig at the Comedy Store and he’d come to do an open spot and he was only 18,’

    ‘I was on the circuit and then he went to Manchester University and phoned me up because he’d started a comedy club and booked me for £40.’

    Trick: John said the then teenage Jack, now 32, lured him to a comedy club he had started in Manchester as the pair were both starting their careers at the time

    Trick: John said the then teenage Jack, now 32, lured him to a comedy club he had started in Manchester as the pair were both starting their careers at the time

    Unfortunately for the comedian, the gig was not a success.

    ‘He didn’t give me (the £40) because they didn’t sell enough tickets and he paid me in laughing gas,’ the father-of-three recalled.

    During the interview John recalled making the momentous decision to give up a full-time job at the age of 40 to enter the ‘lonely’ world of stand up comedy.

    Early days: But the event was so unsuccessful that Jack - then studying for a History of Art degree - couldn't pay the fee and offered John nitrous oxide (pictured in 2008)

    Early days: But the event was so unsuccessful that Jack – then studying for a History of Art degree – couldn’t pay the fee and offered John nitrous oxide (pictured in 2008) 

    He said: ‘What I found absolutely the best thing about comedy is it’s a little club. You find yourself part of this strange needy society of people who want to go on stage and make people happy.

    ‘So as a result there’s not a single comedian I don’t respect. I haven’t met a comedian who is judgemental of other comedians.

    ‘If you’re a 40-year-old bloke going on stage and there’s a 17-year-old – you’re in the same boat. You’re equal.’

    John said: 'What I found absolutely the best thing about comedy is it's a little club. You find yourself part of this strange needy society of people who want to go on stage and make people happy'

    John said: ‘What I found absolutely the best thing about comedy is it’s a little club. You find yourself part of this strange needy society of people who want to go on stage and make people happy’

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