It's Horney, it's Horney, Horney, Horney! And the rest of the excellent Horne Section, plus added Tim Key, for a special one-off best-of jazz-comedy odyssey at London's Shoreditch Town Hall on Friday. Be there, or be elsewhere: honestly, no pressure, it really is entirely up to you. Well, unless the tickets have sold out already, which is quite plausible. They're awfully good.
In that case, they're also hosting a big show for Childline's 30th Anniversary at the Leicester Square Theatre on November 1st, which will feature less red-hot Horne action but more other people, so, hey, swings and roundabouts.
Let's now delve into the windmills of Alex's mind.
The first gig I remember was in The Purple Turtle near Angel. The toilets were decorated with pornography and the clientele were bikers. And my parents.
Favourite show, ever?
Horne Section gigs can blur into one rather, so I'm going to nominate a hypothetical show featuring my favourite ever guests; Reggie Watts, Neil Hannon, Harry Hill and Tommy Tiernan. Playing with any and all of them was the greatest thing ever.
Tim Key and I were, we thought, booked to do a lecture about laughter in Bangor, Northern Ireland. The audience, however, came expecting an "adult comedy night" and the warm up act was Billy Connolly - on a DVD. They pressed pause to bring us on. Seven minutes later we all agreed it would be best to unpause the DVD and Tim and I sloped off to a disappointing Chinese restaurant.
Who's the most disagreeable person you've come across in the business?
After a preview in Brighton a man in a suit bought me a drink and told me he wanted to discuss my show. I was very happy to. It's always nice to have your ego stroked while drinking free beer and I was pretty sure he was going to give me my own TV show/movie/lots of money. When we were sat comfortably he then spent 20 minutes explaining why that was the worst attempt at comedy he had ever seen and that I should not do comedy any more and that I shouldn't call myself a comedian ever again. We didn't swap contact details.
Tim and I performed that same lecture about laughter in the Raffles Hotel, Singapore, and it actually went fairly well (it was almost definitely comedy). My grandmother grew up in Singapore and there's a road named after a distant relative so I was pleased not to have let myself down once again.
Is there one routine/gag you loved, that audiences inexplicably didn't?
A lot more than one, but thank you. We, The Horne Section, have a song (and true story) about a girl three of us fancied at primary school, the chorus of which was 'Bognor Girl, I wanna snog you girl...' I genuinely thought we had a chance at a top ten single with that one. In fact, I still do.
What's your best insider travel tip, for touring comics?
Don't watch the DVD box-set of The Fall And Rise Of Reginald Perrin during your intervals. You'll love the programme but you'll also go back on stage speaking in a strange clipped English accent and the shows won't go as well as they should and it'll take you six months to work out why.
The most memorable review, heckle or post-gig reaction?
My very first Chortle review described me simply as 'tall and balding'. I've had a complex about the latter ever since. How long does the process take?
How do you feel about where your careers are at, right now?
Surprised, grateful and less insecure than ever.