On the latest episode of “Drink Champs,” N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN were joined by the self-proclaimed King of Hip Hop Comedy T.K. Kirkland.

Jersey City, New Jersey is where Kirkland began to build his career as a comedian, but it didn’t take long for him to reach national heights. Eventually, he ventured out West where he met Eazy-E, who recruited the budding entertainer to open up for N.W.A during the “Straight Outta Compton Tour” in the 1980s. From there, Kirkland’s role in the realm of rap was solidified.

Over the years and with a bevy of co-signs in a multitude of spaces, Kirkland ventured around the world. He made people of all walks of life laugh, acted in several movies, produced a number of his own specials and notably helped launch the careers of so many other legends in the space of entertainment. These days, he’s working on yet another comedy show that will be featured on Netflix, all while continuing to release content on his own platform T.K. Kirkland Network. Kirkland, a seasoned vet, still has more plans in the works and even more wisdom to divulge.

On his 63rd birthday in early April, Kirkland joined “Drink Champs” to usher in the occasion and sifted through a number of topics that ranged from the current state of comedy to sports. Nine takeaways from the conversation can be found below, and the full episode can be watched here.

1. On Katt Williams’ viral “Club Shay Shay” interview

Katt Williams refused to bite his tongue when he appeared on Shannon Sharpe’s interview show in early January. On that subject, Kirkland voiced his only issue with the situation. He said, “I was upset on so many levels, embarrassed on so many levels. I also felt that Shannon Sharpe — understanding where he’s from and being an older guy — I felt that on certain platforms, you’re supposed to say, ‘You have your grievances but not on this show.’ Because it started a domino effect of negativity around the world, and people who don’t understand comedy will take stuff and run. Because over the last 20-30 years, social media has really declined the mentality of most men and women around the world.”

2. On the best standup comic of all time

Though he later tossed his own name into this category, Kirkland stamped one of his peers as the greatest comedian of all time. “If I had to say who’s truly the best standup comic, I would say, in the world — because he’s versatile, he can go either way if he had to — [it’s] Tommy Davidson,” he stated. Rationalizing his choice, Kirkland added, “Most comedians that I try to teach the game of comedy, they’re just looking for tomorrow. Tommy Davidson will be working until he’s 100 years old because his style of comedy can blend into anywhere. And that’s what you want in comedy. You don’t wanna just be in one category your whole life.”

3. On comedians who are coming up in the social media era

Kirkland, who came up at a time where he had to grow his fanbase on the ground and in real life, weighed in on the difference between his era and the current period of being able to do so on the internet. “Here’s what social media did for comedians, they got the millions of fans that all of us have been searching for our whole career because to be popular, you need fans. Well, social media got them to get fans immediately. The curse is that most of them don’t have the talent. Because they rushed maybe 10-15 years of success,” he explained.

Then, he addressed the positive side of it all and continued, “But what’s so great about this is that they are getting better, so the longer they stay in the game, the talent will meet the fans. So yeah, they’ll catch up to it. It’s just a reverse situation.”

4. On his Netflix special

Kirkland was once against having a Netflix special, though he recently changed his mind and gave a sneak peek regarding his plans to release a show on the platform. “Netflix is gonna come [in] two ways. It’s gonna come through Live Nation, or me and Cash Money Millionaires are getting ready to do something. And if me and [Birdman] do what we are about to do, this will be the greatest standup special ever,” he declared.

He then explained how people are trained to think that a Netflix look defines success. However, he went on to explain the invaluable benefits of dropping content on his own platform. “I put out my own specials; all the money comes directly to me,” he stated, adding, “My daughter executive produces all of my specials, so even over the next 70 years, she’ll always get a check.”

5. On his own ‘Kings of Comedy’ lineup

The Original Kings of Comedy came out in the year 2000 and starred D.L. Hughley, Bernie Mac, Cedric The Entertainer and Steve Harvey. It was a massive box office and cultural success that highlighted four of the best performers in the game. When asked who he would choose if he had the opportunity to re-shoot the production, Kirkland said, “I gotta put everybody on who I brought up in the game, so it would be Tommy Davidson, it would be D.L. Hughley, it would be Godfrey, it would be Mike Epps.”

6. On the death of Black Hollywood

Kirkland came up in an era where he witnessed entertainers like Ice Cube make a name for themselves in Hollywood. According to the seasoned comedian though, times have certainly changed, as has the perception of “making it.” “The myth is you think that everybody that’s Black in Hollywood is making it, and they’re not,” he began. “You had more TV shows in the ‘90s than you do now… There’s no new Black shows that promote college, that promote family. There's none of those shows on and nobody pays attention to that.”

He concluded, “So, Hollywood has pushed the Black man into a corner... You don’t even see us. You got BET, but no disrespect, you’re not respected on BET. Even the way they pay you is not respected.”

7. On untold memories with N.W.A

The comedian co-signed the idea that Straight Outta Compton was an accurate portrayal of N.W.A’s story, but also revealed a couple of real-life situations that they should’ve written into the script. “I think they should have put a lot of scenes in there where we took off from Los Angeles, California. This was before we had headphones. So, Dr. Dre had a boombox sitting on the plane. And he was playing his music. And the stewardess came down to the row where we were sitting and said, ‘Excuse me, can you turn your radio down? You can't have your music on.’ And Dr. Dre said, ‘F you b-*-*-c-h’” Kirkland claimed.

“And next thing you know, she left, she didn’t argue, she ain’t say nothing. Next thing you hear the pilot say, ‘We’re making an emergency landing.’ They dropped us off in Arizona and all of us had to get off that plane. And we was like 20-something people deep. So Eazy had to buy all new tickets for all that. But they got us off that flight... police escort, everything,” he remembered.

8. On being the dominant co-performer

Kirkland takes a lot of pride in outperforming his peers. On that note, he told a story about Katt Williams seemingly waving the white flag after being tasked with following up such a great showing. He recounted, “I did a show with Katt in St. Louis. [When I] got there, the promoter came in and said, ‘He wants to go on before you.’ And I know he heard me. I said, ‘Nah, that n**ga is the headliner.’ Because everybody knew what I was about to do.”

Kirkland continued, “I went on and destroyed that mug. And after the show, Katt went on, he did like five minutes, he gave people $100, and he threw his coat in the audience and walked off the stage.” Out of respect, Kirkland showed love to Williams and added, “And let’s make sure we’re clear, I'm not throwing shade at Katt Williams.”

9. On why JuJu Watkins will be a legend

Kirkland and company talked about sports for the last fraction of the interview. With his own athletic experience at the top of his mind, he praised University of Southern California talent JuJu Watkins and described why she’s a young legend in the making.

“The team of the future is USC because [of] the freshman girl, JuJu. The reason she’s gonna be successful is because of how painful she took her loss,” he said, referring to USC’s Elite Eight loss against UConn this past spring. “See, when you come in the league and you hurt that bad, you use that to fuel you for the rest of your career. She will remember that feeling for a long time, and she’ll come back.”