After our prior interview with Brian Christopher, where we discussed how his channel got started and how it’s grown over the last 5 years, we were left with more questions and wanted answers. URComped CEO, Craig Shacklett, linked up with the BCSLots star at the beautiful Choctaw Casino and Resort- Durant to dive deep into his travels, further growth, and events such as meet and greets and group slot pulls. Listen to podcast version.
Topics discussed include:
- Recent Milestone- Congratulations on 300,000 subscribers!
- Travel Schedule
- Meet & Greets
- Group Slot Pulls
- Choosing slot machines to play
- Favorite amenities
- Casino Promotions with Brian Christopher
- Catch Phrases (“RUDE!” “BANZA!”)
- Rudies Cruise!
Full Transcript Below
(1:05-1:15) Craig Shacklett: Hello everybody. Craig Shacklett here with URComped. We’re at Choctaw Durant. And I am with the man, the myth, the legend, Brian Christopher. How are you, sir?
(1:15-1:16) Brian Christopher: I’m great. How are you Craig?
(1:16-1:29) CS: I’m good. Thanks for doing this… We did this a couple months ago. I really enjoyed that first interview. We talked about how your slot channel got started. How it’s grown over the last… What 5 years now?
(1:29-1:31) BC: 4 and a half. Almost 5.
(1:31-1:34) CS: 4 and a half and you’re about to hit a major milestone, right? We’re talking about it at lunch.
(1:34-1:40) BC: I mean by the time they see it we’re going to hit it. It’s within 24 hours probably. 300,000 subscribers.
(1:40-1:45) CS: 300,000 subscribers. I know everyone watching right now they’re clapping. “Really? I can’t believe it.”
(1:45-1:55) BC: I know. It’s good to see you though, Craig. Because last time we had to do it virtually. And we’re getting closer. We’re now 6 feet apart. One day will be available to shake hands again.
(1:55-2:20) CS: As opposed to a thousand miles apart. I’m very curious about… It used to be you were having to ask a casinos for permission, “Hey. Can I please film?” I don’t know. It seemed too+ suspicious. Now, you’re being put up in a place like this at Choctaw Durant. Absolutely gorgeous. Tell us about these trips. How many of these trips are you doing now?
(2:20-2:49) BC: We’re basically doing at least 1 trip a week. This property we’re actually here for 6 nights total. And then we’re flying to another property for a further 5 nights. So that’s 1 week there. But sometimes a couple in a week. We’re just going all over the place. We want to showcase as many casinos as we can. We want to show everyone every kind of… I want to hit every casino in the world eventually. Nice. But 1 casino at a time.
(2:49-2:54) CS: So what’s your schedule like on a trip like this?
(2:54-3:42) BC: We are here for 6 nights right now. First day was basically just travelling. The next few days, we do a lot of filming on the floor. We film 5 regular videos for our channel. And we just do some challenge videos. We’re also shooting some live premieres that will go out. So it may seem like a little bit like you’re only shooting 10 videos that takes us a couple days to do all that. And then on top of that, we hold events. We did 3 meet-and-greets yesterday because social distancing can’t have 1 big one anymore. So we just spread it out so everyone can have room. And then we’re doing 4 group slot pulls as well. We’re doing it as really big, giant open space. So everyone’s got 6-feet-apart markers on the floor. So we can still do our group pulls. We have 4 of those to do as well.
(3:42-4:01) CS: We’re about to start one. The crowd is already starting to build. We got about 15 minutes before the group pull. What is your feeling before an event? I feel like I’m getting a little adrenaline. It’s like before a basketball game or something. So what’s your feeling? Is it like before you go on stage you get little butterflies?
(4:01-4:30) BC: I still get a little bit of butterflies. I’ve done now about a hundred and twenty group pulls. I’m pretty used to it for the most part. But even when I was back as an actor jumping on stage at the very beginning you get the butterflies. But as soon as you step out it’s like, “Alright. It’s showtime. Let’s go. Let’s have some fun.” And everyone is so cool when it comes with these things. They’re just happy to meet you. And then they get to spin with you and have some fun. So we’re basically as a bunch of friends just hanging out.
(4:30-4:44) CS: It’s awesome. So aside from the group pulls, when you’re walking around you’re doing all these films you’re telling us about one, I won’t spoil it, but it sounds like an awesome video that’s going to be released in Christmas. How do you decide which games to play?
(4:44-5:08) BC: I just play everything I can. I want to show all the newest and greatest games out there. But I also want to show some of the older classic games and all their favorites. It might be my channel. But it’s actually their channel. I’m playing what they want to see. I don’t have a list of games that I have to play or want to play. I just literally start on one end of the casino and walk my way all the way through to the other end of the casino.
(5:08-5:24) CS: I’m not being paid to say this but Choctaw is a beautiful resort. There’s a lot of stuff to do here. I know a lot of places you go are big resorts. What do you like to do when you’re not playing? What are some of the amenities you like to take advantage of?
(5:24-5:51) BC: Well, here at Choctaw, for example, they have a beautiful outdoor pool area with cabanas. So usually we’ll jump into the cabana. It’s too cold for those right now. The pool is closed. But I love taking advantage of that. They also have bowling alley here. So I love to challenge Brit to a little bit of bowling. There’s a movie theater if I wanted to here. I don’t have time for that though or an arcade. But for most of the trips, I don’t leave the property. So it’s more about the experience of the restaurants for me.
(5:51-6:08) CS: Like you said, you’re doing a lot of these promotions travelling around the country where they’re bringing you in. Anything pop to mind like creative promotions casinos have done with you. Beyond just like, “Hey. We got Brian Christopher here.” Any cool co-promotions you could think of?
(6:08-6:45) BC: We’ve done some couple fun things when we went to Coushatta in Louisiana for the first time. They did a thing called, “Beat The Slot Guru.” And there was an announcement on the PA system. And everyone that had their players card in had a chance to be competing against me in a slot tournament basically. And you had to beat the slot guru. So that was a lot. That was unique for me. That was fun. I ended up beating them all though which was a kind of embarassing. Because it takes zero skills. At the end I started slowing down my spins so that maybe someone can overtake me. And a few of them did in the end. But that was something fun and unique for me.
(6:45-6:55) CS: Well, it builds up your credibility as the slot guru. You got to commend the champ. Do you only play slots? Do you ever sit down at a table game just to mix it up?
(6:55-7:32) BC: Predominantly, just slots. I can only film on slots generally unless they have a special permissions. I do enjoy Roulette and Blackjack. I prefer to play Blackjack like at the tables with my friends though. Like we do our Rudies Cruises with you guys. And that’s my favorite time to play at tables. Because the whole table is basically Rudies members and all of our friends, right? And because for me playing Blacjacks it’s a skill-based game all of a sudden. You don’t want to make the wrong move because it affects everyone elses hand. And if they do the wrong move and it affects your hands. So thats why I just geared towards going to play slots. Zero skill involved which I love.
(7:32-7:55) CS: So we had lunch before this. The Guy Fiere’s. Great restaurant. And one of the waitresses was like, Wait. I thought I recognized you Brian” she started. And then we got out and then somebody else waved to you. You’re a celebrity around here in the casino. Do you ever like when you’re traveling from Southern California to here to wherever, do you get recognized outside of the casino?
(7:55-8:11) BC: It’s happening more and more. I’d say like almost 50% of my Lyft drivers know who I am now which is weird. I guess drivers like to watch YouTube. I don’t know. But generally like out and about in the city going to the grocery stores or wherever it’s not as not as common.
(8:11-8:35) CS: So thank you for the mask. Upside down. Upside down. Looks great Breathes great. So the catchphrases you have. What is that like? When? Is it something that happens and then you know right away like, “Wow. That was good.” How did these come about?
(8:35-9:14) BC: It just came out out of nowhere. Like the banza one came out of nowhere. And as we were premiering that video everyone’s like, “We need a Banza shirt. Where do we get the banza shirt?” And by the end of that live premiere there was a banza shirt in the store. Because they asked for it, they got it. Random things. I told Britt today during filming. I’m like, “I have no control over what comes out of my mouth.” I really don’t. And today I said something and I’m like, “Uh oh. They’re going to ask for a t-shirt out of that one.” What was it? “We’re leaving with a profit in our pants,” is what I said. I think I meant to say like “in our pockets” or something. But it came out “profit on our pants.” And I’m like, “They’re going to try and twist that one into a t-shirt for sure right now.”
(9:14-9:20) CS: That sounds like something I’d say about my 2-year-old. We need a diaper change.
(9:20-9:21) BC: That’s a loss. It’s not a profit.
(9:21-9:35) CS: Well, I know we’re coming up against… Wow. The crowd is building. So how does it work? So for someone who hasn’t done a group pull. So walk us through.
(9:35-10:12) BC: They sign up. You put it on your website. They will sign up. That’s what they do. They sign up in advance. Because these ones they fill up all the time. So we generally fill up about 25 people for a group slot pull. Everyone shows up. We all put in the exact same amount of money. So this group right now is a 200-dollar one. Then we have a 500-group. And we have a 1,000-dollar group. We all put in the money together into one high-limit slot machine. And then we all get to do the same amount of spins at the machine. So it’s a 200-dollar group pull. We’re doing 20-dollar spins. Everyone gets 10 spins a person. And at the end of that, once everyone has an equal amount of spins, we cash out whether up or whether we’re down. And we evenly split the money.
(10:12-10:15) CS: Nice. And did Choctaw do this just for you?
(10:15-10:38) BC: They did. They literally pulled games off of the gaming floor and put them in this whole mezzanine area. It’s the best idea we can come up with to make sure everyone was socially distanced properly. So we literally have markers on the floor over 6 feet apart from each other. So that way we can still have our fun. It may be a pandemic. But darn it. We’re going to have some fun.
(10:38-10:46) CS: That’s right. Well, we’ve got some fun ahead. And praying its February on… What ship are we on?
(10:46-10:47) BC: Oasis of the Seas.
(10:47– 10:52) CS: So we’re hoping we’ll have some fun at sea. And we also have one next August.
(10:52-10:54) BC: Independence of the Seas.
(10:54-11:17) CS: The Rudies Cruises. They’re always a blast. What I love is the music videos. How did you come up with the idea for that? First one. How did you plan out? Walk us through the creation of a Rudies Cruise music video.
(11:17-12:19) BC: Well, it actually started before the Rudies Cruise. Did a music video with my family. We did a family trip to Malta in Europe. And we were grouped like 30 people. And I was literally at the gym one day working out and I had a song in my ears and it was so catchy. I just started visualizing this music video. I just sent it to my family. I’m like, “Here’s your lyrics. Go learn them. We’re gonna do this.” I’ve never done this before. And we went for it. It was pre my YouTube channel too. And so when the first Rudies Cruise was coming on… Second Rudies Cruise was coming on I’m like, “You know I should probably do that for this group.” And I went through trying to find the right song. Because most songs are copywritten that we can’t use on YouTube or the video gets taken down. So I had to find one that would work for YouTube. I found one and it went wild. And I think that music video was the main reason that people wanted to join us for the next one.
(12:19-12:25) CS: So we’ve got the Queen song. We’ve got Chumbawamba.
(12:25-12:26) BC: That’s it right now.
(12:26-12:27) CS: Do you have anything in mind?
(12:27– 12:41) BC: Well, I told them I’d probably do something a little different for the next cruise because we’re gonna have to wear masks. So we can’t really lip-sync. You can’t just like pretend you’re singing. Maybe you can. I don’t know. So I said we’ll come up with something a little more unique. See what we can come up with.
(12:41-12:42) CS: So less lyrics. So just beat tequila.
(12:42-12:47) BC: Tequila. Genius. Done, done and done. Love it.
(12:47-12:57) CS: Well Brian, I know you’ve got your… This crowd is growing by the minute. You’ve got your slot pull. I’m getting butterflies just waiting for it. Thanks for carving out some time before your slot pull to talk on the show.
(12:57-13:07) BC: My pleasure. I always have time for you, Craig.