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Ali Siddiq is an American comedian with a very different claim to fame than most other comedians. He got better at being funny while in prison, where he spent six years of his life. Once he got out, he was clear on what he wished to do in his life.
Ali started as a comedian on BET's "One Mic Stand," Bill Bellamy's "Ladies Night Out Tour," and other places. Ali has changed his life, unlike many other people who have been in prison. He now dedicates his time to making an effort to change the world and help people who need it. He has helped with several charity projects over the years.
He was born and brought up in Houston. Siddiq and his siblings were raised by their single mother after his parents broke up. They lived in the projects and moved in with other family members. Siddiq started selling drugs when he was about 14 years old. At age 19, he was incarcerated for his role in a cocaine trafficking ring. He served six years of his fifteen-year term in Hondo, Texas, at the Ruben M. Torres Unit. During his time in jail, he learned he could make people laugh by telling jokes to his fellow prisoners. He worked in the prison's laundry room, so his coworkers were forced to listen to him.
Siddiq started doing stand-up comedy at the Just Joking Comedy Cafe in Houston after escaping prison in 1997. It was at the comedy club's Apollo Night, a night frequented by students, when he made his stage debut.
Most of Siddiq's stand-up comedy takes the form of a story instead of the more common setup and punchline. In his shows, Siddiq tells stories from his own life and shares his thoughts on current events, race, and politics.
In 2008, Siddiq made his first TV appearance on HBO's Def Comedy Jam. He was on BET's Comic View and at the Just for Laughs comedy festival in Montreal in 2012. In 2013, Comedy Central named him the "#1 Comic to Watch."
He appeared on the Comedy Central web and TV show This Is Not Happening in 2015. The phrase "Mexican got on boots!" was first explained to him during a jail riot he described. Five million people watched the video of this story on YouTube. In the same year, Siddiq appeared on the AXS TV special Gotham Comedy Live, which was taped at the legendary Gotham Comedy Club. His debut Comedy Central special aired that same year, 2016.