Git er done! The redneck phrase that is still sweeping the nation some decades after its invention! Larry The Cable Guy, originator of said phrase is on the road again and this time he’s stopping at the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races! In a TheatreBloom exclusive interview we’ve taken a few minutes to get acquainted with the wild comedian and see just what it is that keeps him going with his funny business after all these years!
Thanks for giving us a moment of your time! If you just want to give us a quick introduction, we’ll get things going:
Larry The Cable Guy: I’m Larry The Cable Guy and I have been doing comedy— I went professional in 1988. I started in 1985. I started doing Larry The Cable Guy in 1991.
What is it about the Larry The Cable Guy persona that has made you stick with it for over 25 years?
Larry: It’s fun to do and it’s funny. It makes me laugh.
What is it that audiences have to look forward to with your upcoming show at the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races?
Larry: I’m a one-liner comedian. I don’t really stray much from what I do. I love making people laugh and telling jokes. I do one-liners.
What is it about comedy that made you want to pursue that as a career?
Larry: It was just something that I enjoyed. I loved all the old-time guys who did it before me. I enjoyed Henny Youngman and Milton Berle and Bob Hope and Phyllis Diller. I used to love that show Make Me Laugh when I was a kid. I can remember Howie Mandell being real young on there. I love that style of humor. I guess just got on stage one day and I got hooked.
You’ve had quite a successful career doing all sorts of stuff, TV work, animated voice work, stand-up. Do you have a preference as to which you enjoy more?
Larry: I like the live stuff. I hate being away from the house. I’ve been on the road for so long so that’s the only real downside of the live stuff, but I definitely like the live stuff. There’s nothing better than live performing. I mean everything else is great, Cars and TV and everything. But live performing is the most fun. I mean of every different aspect of stand-up that I do, having that live audience right there with you, that’s the best.
I know you just mentioned a few comedians you enjoyed when you were growing up. Do you have one in particular that you might say you look up to as a comedic idol or that you draw inspiration from?
Larry: I always like Gary Shandling, of course he passed away last year. He had the style that I like. I loved Steve Martin growing up. I read his book, it was really awesome, his stand-up book. There’s another guy, Nick Dipaolo, I like him a lot too.
What would you say is the big challenge of being a live stand-up comedian?
Larry: I think it’s about getting comfortable on stage. Getting going and finding your persona, it takes a while to get there, but once you get going it’s pretty easy. That comes after many, many performances, but once you’re up and going and armed with jokes the hardest part about getting up on stage was getting up on stage. Once you’ve been up a bunch and you’re used to it there’s really nothing too difficult about it.
Now we’ve talked a little bit about how Larry The Cable Guy is your stage persona. Are you and he very similar or are you very different?
Larry: No, they’re pretty different. Well, I don’t know. We started out completely different but over the years we’ve morphed into the same. When I first started doing it everything was made up. I wasn’t married, I didn’t have any kids, so I could just make up this whole life for this character. Then I got married and I had kids and I wanted to incorporate my wife and my kids into my act because there’s a lot of good stuff there. So he kind of morphed a lot closer to me. We started out pretty far apart but the act has gotten a lot tighter. There’s aspects of it that aren’t like me and aspects that are like me.
Do you have a favorite joke that you like to tell?
Larry: My act is all complete nonsense. It’s mostly one-liner jokes. I’m not a storyteller. I write one-liners and I do one-liners. I wouldn’t say I have anything that sticks out. It’s all ridiculous stuff. There isn’t really anything with substance that sticks out. Now Jeff (comedian Jeff Foxworthy) and I do some stuff together and then we tell stories at the end so I think people get to know me a little bit through those stories, but the jokes in my act are all complete nonsense.
Where would you say your vocal inspiration for Larry The Cable Guy came from?
Larry: I picked up my accent in college. I grew up on a farm in Nebraska in a small town of 1,200. I moved to Florida and I pretty much gravitated to the tractor kids and the redneck kids, the country kids. They had southern accents. I went to college in Georgia and they had southern accents. I’m a dialect chameleon. You put me in with a bunch of different people for a few weeks and I start sounding like them. I just picked it up, I can pop in and out of his accent any time I want, especially because that’s how me and my old buddies used to talk.
Git ‘er done! Where did that come from?
Larry: I just popped that out on the radio. It was my sign off. I didn’t really think much of it. “Whatever you gotta do, just git ‘er done!’ They’d ask— “what’s git ‘er done mean?” I don’t know. Whatever you gotta do just git ‘er done! I said it every day, every day, every day for many, many years. It just got popular.
What would you say is your favorite part of being a stand-up comedian?
Larry: I’ve always been a funny guy. It’s always fun to feel that satisfaction of writing a joke and then hearing people belly laugh at it. I think a lot of comedians are pretty insecure and always have to be the life of the party because of their insecurities. It makes you feel good and it makes you feel liked when they laugh. Everybody wants to feel liked and accepted, I guess. So hearing them laugh at what you’ve written gives you that feeling. It’s a good feeling. Getting on stage and commanding a crowd is like a conductor. The audience is the instrument and you’re the conductor. Anywhere you go you can make them do this or you can make them do that just with what you’re saying. It’s awesome.
Why do you want people to come out and see you at Hollywood Casino?
Larry: I want them to come out and laugh, have a good time, and enjoy themselves. They know who I am, they’ve seen my act before, they know it’s going to be funny. If you want a good night of entertainment, come on out and turn off the news and enjoy yourself for an hour.
Anything else you’d like to say about being a stand-up comedian?
Larry: I love being a stand-up comedian. Stand-up comedy has enabled me to make a good living out of something that I was blessed to be able to do. I’m glad that I stuck to it. It’s hard to do, a lot of people think it’s easy, it’s definitely hard to do. If you’re funny and you’re different and you work hard at it— if you treat it like a business and show up to perform when you need to perform you can be successful at it. I love it. It’s afforded me a lot of things in life that would probably never be attainable unless I capitalized on the talent that I had. I’m very thankful for it.
Larry The Cable Guy will be appearing on March 18, 2017 at the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races— 750 Hollywood Drive in Charles Town, WV. Tickets can be purchased here.
For more upcoming performances in the event center, click here.
Click here to see the TheatreBloom Exclusive Contest to win a pair of tickets to see Larry The Cable Guy Live on stage!