Just like a sculptor chip away from the marble, adversity also has a way of chipping away at and crafting us into who we are and what we become. There were two transforming events in his life, Joey Diaz lost his mother in his teens and it tended him towards recklessness but his stint in prison would lead him to the discovery of a talent he has, comedy, which has made him a better man.
He grew up listening to stories in his mother’s bar and was enthralled by the art of storytelling. That young boy would grow up to catch the hearts of many fans with his talent and skills in the same art though on a stand-up platform. He had also learned early on to justify everything in his head with comedy as an only child. Jose Antonio Diaz is his name but he is better known as Joey Diaz, a Cuban-American comedian, actor, and podcaster.
Joey Diaz Bio – Age
Joey was born on February 19, 1963, in Havana, Cuba and is also known by his nicknames, Mad Flavor, and CoCo. His father died when he was three and he moved to New York City but relocated to North Bergen, New Jersey with his mother in the 1970s. He attended McKinley School and graduated in 1982 from North Bergen High School.
His eyes have been in the arts since his early days and he won awards for performing arts in school. He was raised Catholic and stories about Francis of Assisi and St. Michael interested him a lot. Twelve years after he lost his father, his mother was found dead on the floor of their home when he was 15 making him an orphan.
The unfortunate event left him in the care of foster families who took him in at various points in his life. He became reckless and experimented with drugs, took to fights and engaged in crimes. This lifestyle made his stay with these families short-lived and he lived with up to four families including an Italian family.
He credits up to 20 people who took care of him through the early years of being an orphan and helped him face adversity. Till today, he still keeps a relationship with them. One of them is his grade school teacher who he took to the premiere of The Grudge Match.
When he turned 19, he left New Jersey for Colorado but would later return in 1984 to celebrate his birthday and stayed on for the next 18 months. He, however, described that comeback as a mistake and the worst 18 months of his life as his substance abuse heightened. Joey later returned to Colorado after that time and attended the University of Colorado at Boulder.
He abandoned school stating that he did not enjoy his time there and was arrested for kidnapping and aggravated robbery in 1988. This would lead him to spend fourteen months in prison. During the period of his incarceration, he discovered his talent for comedy and performed for his fellow inmates.
It took him three years to fully embrace stand-up. He performed his first routine in 1991 at the Comedy Works in Denver at a show headlined by Matt Woods. Coco also entered comedy competitions where he either tops or comes out among the first ten. And he has been doing comedy since then be it stand-up or on his own audio and video podcast, The Church of What’s Happening Now, which he launched on September 2, 2012.
His influences include albums by Richard Pryor, who was called the Picasso of comedy profession by Jerry Seinfeld, and he appears regularly on The Joe Regan Experience.
Joey’s comedy career exposed him and got him a place in the acting arena. He has had roles in television series NYPD Blue, My Name is Earl, Law & Order, and in films like The Longest Yard, Taxi, Spider-Man 2, which was his first major feature film, Grudge Match and The Dog Who Saved Christmas.
He can now be described as hugely successful having transformed from a troubled kid to a life coach who has developed a cult-like following. Joey ended his longtime abuse of cocaine in 2007 after his cats died from ingesting the substance in one of his bags. About his break, he said it has to do with one’s peace of mind. While it took some people 10 years to acquire it, it took him a long 30 years.
Diaz Mom, Wife and Daughter
His mother’s name may not be known but she was a huge influence on his life during her lifetime. She ran a bar and a successful game operation. During his teens, Joey came home late from a Halloween party and his mother got mad at him and smacked him. She, however, apologized the next morning and explained that what she did to him was because she wants him to grow up to be a man. As if she was preparing him for her demise, she died a week later. And Joey went on to become the man his mother wanted him to be.
CoCo has been married twice but the name of his first wife is not known. They had a daughter but divorced in 1991. However, following their split, he lost a relationship with their daughter. The divorce and loss of contact with their daughter served as a motivation to him during his entry into comedy in 1991. He decided to embrace stand-up so that he could come back and make her proud.
Although he has become successful, they did not come back together. On November 25, 2009, he became a husband a second time to his second wife, Terrie Clark, a Nashville Tennessee native. They had their first child, a daughter, Mercy in 2013.
His Height and Weight Loss
Mad Flavor is known for his large body size during his early days in the show business. However, he is looking trimmer and seems to have shed some weight. He appeared in the television film, The Dog Who Saved Christmas in 2009 and he weighed 390 lbs at the time of the filming. But by late 2009, Joey Diaz was weighing almost a hundred less at 295 lbs. A grand transformation you would say. His height is 5′ 10″ (1.78 m).
Joey Diaz’s Net Worth
Joey Diaz has worked as a doorman as well as a car salesman but is currently thriving as a sought-after comedian and actor. His years of dedication to his course is really paying off. He has earned a net worth estimated at $500,000.