“I’m going to rock your world in quite a gentle way – with a delicious cake as opposed to a bag of drugs,” sings David O’Doherty on his Yamaha-assisted ditty FAQ For the DO’D.
It’s a phrase which perfectly sums up the Dublin-born comedian’s often shambolic stand-up show, which he refers to as Very Low Energy Musical Whimsy (or VLEMWy).
This year’s If.comedy award-winner at the Edinburgh Festival, O’Doherty has a naturally self-deprecating presence on stage, and he interspersed a succession of low-key yet brilliantly observed gags with lo-fi songs performed on cheap keyboards purchased from eBay.
It’s far from slick, but shot through with a winning charm and heart-warming earnestness which made for a fantastically funny show.
There were routines about how to get ultra-competitive at board games, which mostly involved demonstrating how to maim opponents using the pieces supplied, followed by small moments of wonder and joy in life, such as cash-related bathroom incidents, all from a man who introduces himself as the East Leinster Under-14 triple jump bronze medallist.
Weaving intelligent turns of phrase together with his whimsical outlook, there were numerous points where his insightful wordplay and ideas genuinely inspired thought, such as The Finest Minds in History, which sees Marie Curie, Plato and Einstein appearing in a tale of unrequited love.
Aside from the rage-fuelled My Beefs 2008 – name-checking celebrity news and other irritants which have riled the otherwise affable Irishman – O’Doherty provided a hugely endearing set which confirmed just how deserved his awards success was in August.
His offbeat comedy was a pure delight and his closing song, Me & Tiger, was a superbly realised story drawing together the lives of O’Doherty and Tiger Woods – who were born merely days apart – and their reversed roles. Unbridled joy in a cosy and gentle package.