Sometimes you hear a story that you can’t help but to grow jealous of. “That One Time Dave Chappelle Performed In Front Of Chris Rock, Kevin Hart, Marlon Wayans, Questlove And Bill Bellamy”? Yep. That qualifies.
It was the night of February 27, 2013, and Dave Chappelle’s perform a quiet, somewhat unannounced set in New York City’s Comedy Cellar. That, in and of itself, marks an event worth chronicling. But what followed would go down as legendary. GQ asked each of the guys the question “How the hell did this happen?>
Chris Rock: Dave is like Prince.
Marlon Wayans: Like Bigfoot. You know he exists, but he’s the hardest guy to lock down.
Rock: You never know when he’s going to show up. That night was a comedy booty call from Dave. [in Chappelle's voice]“I’m in town, man! You should come on down!” Dave’s my favorite comedian. So…
Questlove: I was on a date in Brooklyn, and I was trying not to look at my phone, but I heard a beep and saw the name Rock: “I’m down here at the Cellar. Chappelle’s going on in twenty minutes.” That was the fastest “Check, please!” I’ve ever said in my life.
Wayans: I was out with Bill [Bellamy] after a Knicks game and hit Kevin [Hart] up. He was in town to host SNL. He was like, “Yo, I’m at the Comedy Cellar. Chappelle and Rock are here.” I was like, “Word. Let’s go.”
Bellamy: Me and Marlon walk in, and Dave is onstage.
When Dave was 18 or so, I hosted a night at this club in East Orange, New Jersey—the Peppermint Lounge—where he used to perform. So I know if he sees me, he’s gonna go crazy. He sees me. He says, “People, this is unbelievable. I think I’m having a flashback.”
Questlove: Then, one by one, he just called them up, kind of like the Harlem Globetrotters’ Magic Circle.
Bellamy: Kevin Hart walks out. And here comes Chris Rock. People go goddamn crazy. Then Dave was like, “Who else is in here?” That was rich. So then me and Marlon come up. And we just start passing the microphone, telling stories about each other. It was a Black Pack moment.
Wayans: The stage is small as all hell. It’s like—put it this way, my house growing up in the projects probably was slightly bigger than that stage. Thank God there wasn’t ten of us on it.
Oh lord. The jealousy, it consumes me.
With a setup like that, little else needs to be said. We all wish we were there but at least we have the participants to tell what took place. Here’s to the positive Chappelle stories continuing.
Read the full article at GQ.