NEW YORK — Moroccan and Monroe Cannon better watch out — soon, they’re likely to find their way into dad Nick Cannon’s stand-up comedy routine.
Their mother, Mariah Carey, is already the subject of one bit in Cannon’s new comedy special, “Mr. Showbiz.” (The special, debuting at 9 p.m. today on Showtime, was taped in March at the Palms.)
The 30-year-old entertainer, whose resume includes everything from being a morning talk-show host to chairman of TeenNick, also pokes fun at himself, including all those potshots he gets in the tabloids and on blogs.
“My act is my life,” said Cannon, who is also releasing a live album version of “Mr. Showbiz” next week. “It’s not going to be funny if it’s not talking about the stuff that everybody wants to talk about.”
Right now, what people want to talk about are Moroccan and Monroe, who are just two weeks old. Cannon said the babies are beautiful, look like a combination of their mom and dad, and already are showing their personalities.
“Moroccan, I call him Roc, he’s more laid-back like me,” Cannon said Thursday. “But my daughter is definitely a little diva, she’s the feisty one out of the bunch.”
Question: Was it tough to leave your children this week?
Answer: Yeah, this is probably one of the most difficult times ever that I’ve ever had leaving, I guess because it’s the first time, and I didn’t want to go but I had to go work. I’ve never been in this situation before. … I planned this entire day to make sure that I’m home tonight, even though I’m 3,000 miles away.
Q: For people who aren’t familiar with your stand-up, what should they expect?
A: They’ll see me for who I really am. This is really an introduction to Nick Cannon. You may have known me for hosting something, may have known me from music, you may have known me from a radio show, you may have seen me in a movie. … There’s a certain public perception out there about me, and even my personal life, but at the core, and in my foundation, I’ve always been a stand-up comic, and you’ll see that in the special.
Q: What advice has helped you in your career?
A: I remember one night, opening up for Dave Chappelle. … We were in a rowdy college crowd, and (I) went on before him and tried to alter my act for what I thought that crowd wanted to hear. And they booed me off the stage. This wasn’t that long ago: I had done movies, and everything and was pretty successful, and didn’t think that could ever happen to me again. … Sitting backstage talking to Dave about that and (him) just saying, “Never alter your act for the audience, always go out there and be yourself, because even if they boo you on that sense, at least you can say, ‘At least I was me.’ ” … So I took that with me from that day, and knock on wood, I’ve been rocking stages ever since and being comfortable with who I am, no matter what platform I’m on.
Q: Does your act ever get raunchy?
A: I’m not a raunchy type of guy, but I am a 30-year-old man, so I’m talking about things a 30-year-old man is talking about. It’s not clean-cut, it’s not PG, but it is safe, it is family-friendly to a sense. … I talk about sex, I talk about life, I talk about serious issues, but I do it in a way that you wouldn’t mind sitting with your kid and experiencing it, and I think that’s one of the things that’s appealing about my show, is that it’s a little bit in there for everybody.
Q: Finally, when will we see pictures of the babies?
A: I don’t know how I feel showing pictures. Definitely eventually it has to happen, but I’m still pondering on the timing on when to show the world my children, because they didn’t ask to be born into this situation, so I want to give them a sense of normalcy for as long as (I) can. I don’t want them mad at me 20 years from now, going, “Why was you showing us butt-naked as infants?”