Another ‘Saturday Night Live’ Alum Joins ‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’

Published 10 months ago by

late night band leader Another Saturday Night Live Alum Joins Late Night with Seth Meyers

Seth Meyers has spent seven years anchoring or co-anchoring the Weekend Update desk on Saturday Night Live, spending the same amount of time as the show’s head writer. We know him, we know his smart and slightly smarmy sense of humor, but we don’t know what kind of show Late Night with Seth Meyers will be when it premieres on February 24th with Meyers as only the fourth host in the Late Night program’s 31 year history.

While that mystery figures to allude us up until showtime, Meyers’ staff has come into view over these last few months. Michael Shoemaker is continuing on as a producer from his time with Jimmy Fallon’s iteration of the show and Alex Baze is leaving his role at Saturday Night Live as Weekend Update Head Writer to take the same job on Meyers’ show. What we didn’t know was who would lead the band. In fact, up until recently, we didn’t even know if Meyers would have a band or some other kind of sidekick, but all of that changed yesterday when it was revealed that Fred Armisen – another Saturday Night Live alumnus – is joining Meyers’ show as the leader of the 8G house band. Yes, Fred Armisen, aka Roger Brush and band leader.

Though Armisen is known for his own lengthy stint on Saturday Night Live and for his work on IFC’s Portlandia (which he will do in addition to this new role), he also played drums in the 80s for Trenchmouth, a punk band. Armisen also plays guitar. Right now, it isn’t known if Armisen will play a role in curating which musical acts come on the program, but it seems pretty likely that he will do more than play the show’s opening theme song and play in and out of commercials.

late night band leader armisen Another Saturday Night Live Alum Joins Late Night with Seth Meyers

What Armisen will do is serve as Meyers’ psuedo sidekick and his on-camera island – someone who can keep a joke going and someone that the host can relate to. Even the late night shows without defined co-hosts or chatty band leaders deploy some kind of similar device. Jimmy Kimmel has Guillermo, Craig Ferguson – who for years went completely solo – now has Geoff, his robot sidekick. With Armisen, though, there is hope that his presence will also be felt in the show’s sketch work, potentially giving Meyers’ show the most impressive sketch comedy player since Conan aligned with the Upright Citizens Brigade in the 90s.

Despite all the good that comes from this announcement (and by good, we mean possible canoe dancing and Roger Brush appearances), the lateness of this addition does seem a little odd since the show is less than two weeks from debuting. What was plan B if Armisen had said no, Horacio Sanz on backpacker guitar? There is also some justification to worries that this could be an 11th hour panic move by producer Lorne Michaels in response to something that he is seeing in the run-up to the show, but it could just as easily be a sign that it took awhile for Armisen’s deal to come together or that the announcement was strategically delayed to make a bigger impact just prior to the show’s premiere. It’s also entirely possible that the Armisen addition means that Michaels and Meyers are doubling down to help Late Night step out from Jimmy Fallon’s shadow and stand out in a crowded field.

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Late Night with Seth Meyers premieres on Monday, February 24th @12:37AM on NBC

Source: THR

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  1. Seth Myers is decent in SNL as the weekend update anchor, but holding down his own Late Night show? idk. I dont think he’ll have as much success as Jimmy Fallon.

  2. Seth should have at least got someone funny

    • you silly man.

      • thanks for proving my point

  3. “With Meyers as only the fourth host . . .”

    Sixth at least. Don’t forget that Steve Allen and Jack Parr hosted before Carson. If we count Tonight Show hosts the same way we count presidents (which only makes sense), then Leno would get counted twice (Grover Cleveland is counted twice for serving non consecutive terms), then he is the seventh host, and that is without counting all od the guest hosts over the years.

    • Neve mind, misread it. My bad. I thought this was about the yonight show. Too quick on the draw.

    • LATE NIGHT host, not Tonight Show. Letterman, Conan, Fallon, and Meyers.

    • the Late Night not The Tonight Show

      • Sigh, I read a ton of blog posts today that all had titles like “things from your childhood . . .” That were not from my childhood. My “damn whippersnappers don’t got no sense of history” button was on a hair trigger. Honestly, who hosts either program now is something of a non issue for me anyway as I can’t remember that last time I wasn’t asleep before 10 pm anyway.

  4. I’m thinking Seth Meyers will be fine, Late Night has always had the benefit of the later timeslot and higher allotted level of raunchiness, as opposed to the Tonight Show. Conan’s Late Night was hilarious, but admittedly his Tonight Show just never hit the mark for me (as an avid fan). While I also feel he wasn’t given the opportunity to find his footing, it leads me to believe we should be more concerned for Fallon than Seth.

  5. He gets replaced and/or cancelled in less than a year.

  6. SNL hasn’t been funny in many years. I tune in several times each year to see if anything has changed. I’ll tune in this year as well but I don’t have high hopes. The 80′s and early 90′s were the best time for SNL in my opinion. Just cancel this mess already.

  7. Too bad Tina Fey didn’t get the gig as host