Jessica Delfino (born June 8, 1976 in Bridgeport, Connecticut) is a controversial singer, songwriter, and comedienne based in New York City. Her songs tend to ridicule taboos and typically include jokes about vaginas and other sexual or dark topics. In her act, she plays an assortment of instruments including guitar, flying V ukulele and a rape whistle. She is also an illustrator and attended Philadelphia's Art Institute, as well as the University of Maine. She has won numerous awards, including beating out Flight of the Conchords to win the Best Musical Act at the 2005 ECNY awards, and a 2005 Village Voice "Best of" Award, in which the Village Voice declared her to be "fall-off-your-chair hilarious." She has appeared on Good Morning America as a finalist in a national comedy competition. She has also won many other competitions, some of them unusual, such as The Stoned Spelling Bee in Brooklyn, the Madagascar Institute's Catholic high school talent competition  and the Arlene's Grocery "Gong Show," which later became The Gong Show with Dave Attell on Comedy Central.
Jessica Delfino and I met in the fall of 2007 performing on the same bill of Megan Schantz's "Hot Blood Cabaret". Since then, we've found great delight in existing as not-siblings to each other, I've impersonated a close friend of hers, found her friends to be personable, and nearly had a stint doing an actual Delfino impersonation in the 2009 NYC Art Parade.
Jessica has always thrived in compliment and controversy as a well of commentary and expression. I have always enjoyed her thoughts, her jokes, and her songs about bathing-suit-areas and the like. In the cool spring month of April 2010, I wrote to Ms. Delfino, my non-sister (see future musicomedikanza "The Thaddeus and Olivia Lerfino Family Hour"), with a page of questions and occasional replies to unsaid statements. I asked my dear Jessica to fill out the page by filling in the blanks. This is what I received:
ADAM LERMAN: Ms. Delfino.
JESSICA DELFINO: Mr. Lerman.
AL: Thank you so much for joining me in this conversation.
JD: Well, you know how much I love joining things.
AL: How so?
JD: Well, for example, I was in girl scouts. Can you see how my shoulder is indented lightly from where the sash would rest?
AL: I can’t see it, but I like your outfit. You were recently featured in Time Out NY for Best Dressed. Who are you wearing? And why? How many ounces does the clothing weigh?
JD: I’m wearing a look I like to call “the cat’s me-YOWZA!” because if I were naked, I’d get arrested. I’m gonna take a stab and say, “7”.
AL: You are a woman in comedy. Are you a comedian, or a comedienne?
JD: I’m a satirical musician; a dirty dittitarian; a twisted minstrel.
AL: Was that silly question? A sort of antiquated, mid-century, glass-ceiling-type question?
JD: Answering this interview is like one of those box puzzles you find at yard sales with all the best pieces missing, you know the type.
AL: Haha, you’re right. But I’ve never really found one.
AL: Are there too many comedians? Is there something we can/should do about this?
JD: Yes, I think there are too many comedians, but it keeps us honest. Give more comedians jobs, you know; census takers and the like, then these comedians will become other things, reducing the over-all number of comedians.
AL: You write a lot of songs about female body parts, and fantasy animals, and Chinese people. Why not automechanics? Or the German countryside?
JD: Oh, I do! I write about Chinese, fantasy animals & automechanics female body parts!
But I definitely should write a song about the German countryside, and soon.
AL: When did you write your first vagina song?
JD: The day I discovered the magic within.
AL: Are you, or have you ever been, a cultural commentator? A communist? A socialist? A proctologist?
JD: I’m certainly a cultural commentator, and possibly also a communist, socialist or proctologist, depending on your definition of these words and who you ask.
AL: What is your favorite instrument in your collection?
JD: I love all my guitars, I have four of them. I also really love my flying V ukulele and my electronic autoharp, which is like a keyboard from the future that a witch in the woods would play. Don’t make me choose between my children.
AL: What is your favorite instrument outside your collection?
JD: The dulcimer.
AL: I’ve never heard of that. Does it smell? Does it sound like a dog? Or yellow?
JD: I don’t know much about it, I just like the name. I know it’s a member of the “zither” family.
AL: What keeps you motivated to continue your act? Or do you want to discontinue your act?
JD: I go back and forth on a daily basis. At this point, it is supporting my life and taking me on travels and adventures. It’s still fun. I’d like to push it as far as I can and see how far it will take me. When it stops being fun, I’ll probably do something else. I’d like to run a bed and breakfast someday.
AL: Is there a venue you’d love to play, that you have yet to?
JD: Madison Square Garden. The main rock stage at Coachella. A coffee shop on the Champs De Elysees.
AL: Finally, do you think that comedians are under-sexed, and if so, do you think a government bailout would help? Who would they send as a liaison?
JD: I think that male comedians are under-sexed at first, and that is why they start doing comedy. Like for example, Carrot Top. Comedy gets them at least evenly-sexed, and that’s why they stick with it. The sex keeps them in comedy! Women can get sex any time they want, even ugly women, so comedy doesn’t factor in. I think that guys are possibly even less attracted to a female comedian, because they have a tendency to be more brash and smart, less likely to tolerate baloney, more likely to talk about vaginas or other undesirable topics. I don’t understand part B of the question.
AL: Man, so true, though I’ve never heard of him. You are so smart. Do you want to get some coffee some time, and I’ll interview you or something? Um… wait… [exhales loudly].
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Adam Lerman is an actor, writer, thinker and kinda tall. He lives in Brooklyn, NY with his two hats.
To follow the life and times of Ms. Delfino, please visit the following sites: