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Wingin’ it

TNT Wangs add comedians to their fourth annual birthday bash

Buddy Rodriguez, Travis Cagle, Evan Hughes, and Big Chico

Greg Bollinger

TNT Wangs is turning four, and they’re inviting some munchie-friendly comics to this year’s party. Don’t worry, you’re invited too.

Tulsa’s rolling restaurant scene has grown in recent years. As a higher percentage of our meals get wheels, few (if any) food trucks have integrated themselves into Tulsa’s entertainment scene like TNT.

The food truck sits outside Soundpony nearly every day and serves up golden-fried and sincerely-seasoned chicken and seafood. Sides include okra, fries, and their coveted Trak-bread. Trak bread—along with most of their menu—is named after a member of the local entertainment community.

Honoring local figures with a space on their menu is more than a promotion scheme. It’s a way of supporting Tulsa artists. The feeling is mutual between Wangs and their Menu Squad. Artists have returned the favor. Local rappers like Keeng Cut, Steph Simon, Pade, Dismond J, AJ Ross, Mike Dee, Surron the Seventh, and many others have paid homage to the food truck in their music. Producer KFive recently released a beat mixtape called 808’s and TNT.

As in recent years, Wangs’ birthday bash will feature musicians such as these who fly the TNT flag.

“Ninety percent of the people performing this year have mentioned us in their music,” Nancy “Sis” Williams said.

Sis is the CWO (Chief Wangs Officer) of Wangs, and—apart from their Bird Man costume—their official mascot.

The biggest change at the party this year will be a new emphasis on stand-up comedy.

“I saw Evan Hughes at the Blue Whale Comedy fest and he was hilarious,” Sis said. “TNT loves laughter and we wanted to bring that into this year.”

Sis asked Hughes to curate a spate of comics for this year’s party. He turned up local favorites, out-of-staters, and first-timers—all of whom are TNT fans.

“The idea to have a TNT Wangs comedy show has actually been around for a super long time now, and I've never been asked to do a show farther in advance before,” Hughes said. “Sis asked me to do the show like a year ago maybe.”

Hughes tapped up-and-comer Buddy Rodriguez as host.

“Wangs, first off, are sent from heaven,” Rodriguez said. “I'm hyped to do it ‘cause they've done a lot for this small fella. Like, who else is going to care of my hunger pains when I'm smacked at 11:15?”

Another newer face to the funny-mic, Big Chico, is a long time member of Wangs’ Menu Squad.

Big Chico has never performed comedy, but Hughes recruited him off Chico’s Menu Squad status, and his self-described, Facebook-funny persona.

“They chose me, because I guess every time they see me I’m clowning and telling jokes,” Big Chico said. “But I don’t write jokes. I will be going on a sort of freestyle.”

Arkansas comedian Travis Cagle, who frequents Tulsa for shows, is on the bill, and said he makes a point to eat Wangs every time he’s in town.

“There's probably been four or five times where I drove from 131st and Garnett [where I stay when I visit] to downtown just for Wangs.”

Hughes described Cagle as a “stoner comic,” which he also described as “perfect, because that’s when you want Wangs the most!”

Cagle, who has also been described as “the personality of Matthew McConaughey in the body of Dakota Fanning,” is happy to confirm.

“A fun quote that I'm known for saying after a joke goes really good or really bad is ‘Sometimes I smoke pot all the time,” Cagle said.

Mononymous Tulsa comic Yasamin will also be there. In addition to the comics and aforementioned emcees, there will be dance crews and a freestyle session atop KFive’s 808’s and TNT beats.

As always, all proceeds will go to the Children’s Hospital at Saint Francis, which the Wangs crew frequently visits to cheer up kids.

“TNT loves the kids,” Sis says. “Put [TNT family member] Nephew in our Bird Man costume, and we sing at the hospital and do lots of hugging.”

But if catching a dope show and supporting sick children isn’t your thing, Buddy Rodriguez has another option: “Ah man, just support the brand and buy a gang of waffles for the culture, you bastard!”

TNT WANGS 4th Anniversary Bash
Comedy: Evan Hughes, Yasamin, Travis Cagle, Buddy Rodriguez, Big Chico
Music: BranjaeKeeng Cut, Steph Simon, CO2, J. Friday, Earl Hazard, Mike Dee & Surron The Seventh, Pade, Dismond J, Keezy, The Neighbors, and more
Sat., June 30, 7 p.m.
Yeti | 417 N. Main St.

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