Entertainment

Bill Engvall talks clean jokes, getting older ahead of show at Alabama Theatre in Myrtle Beach area

Bill Engvall, known for co-starring in “Blue Collar Comedy” tours with Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy and Ron White, and reaching the finals in fall 2013 on the 17th season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” will share and stir smiles at 6 p.m. July 12 at the Alabama Theatre in North Myrtle Beach.
Bill Engvall, known for co-starring in “Blue Collar Comedy” tours with Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy and Ron White, and reaching the finals in fall 2013 on the 17th season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” will share and stir smiles at 6 p.m. July 12 at the Alabama Theatre in North Myrtle Beach. Courtesy photo

Calling the day after Father’s Day, at 8 a.m. Mountain Daylight Time from home in Utah, the Beehive State, Bill Engvall was buzzing with insight and perspective.

The longtime comedian, known for co-starring in “Blue Collar Comedy” tours with Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy and Ron White, as well as recording almost a dozen compact discs, and reaching the finals in fall 2013 on the 17th season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” will share and stir smiles at 6 p.m. Sunday at the Alabama Theatre in North Myrtle Beach.

Engvall said Father’s Day has “mellowed out” as he and wife Gail’s children – Emily, out on her own and living in Nevada, and Travis – have reached adulthood, yet the happy dad and husband this year enjoyed a day of golf and cooking out.

The author of “Just a Guy: Notes From a Blue Collar Life,” written with Alan Eisenstock and published in 2008 by St. Martin’s Press, Engvall said he had fun writing the autobiography and wanted to connect with “a lot of people who had a fairly normal childhood who turned out all right.” Its being out of print didn’t make him laugh, though, because he wished its rollout did not coincide with the debut of “The Bill Engvall Show,” a situation comedy that spanned three seasons on TBS.

Partnered with English native Emma Slater for “Dancing With the Stars,” and his wife cheering him on in the audience into the final four pairs standing, Engvall called this “reality show” experience “performing in its own right.” Flashing his comedic side, he opined if it were “a true dance competition, none of us would have asked to do it.”

Notwithstanding a knee replacement that resulted after his run on the series, Engvall appreciated the honor shared with Slater and the cast members, and if the show producers “called me today, I’d be there tomorrow.”

Asked about being funny without use of any curse words – which could be viewed as a special talent in this day and age – so the whole family can enjoy his slices of life, Engvall got serious, for just a second.

“I think people really appreciate it,” he said, “but I always tell people, I’m not ‘Disney on Ice.’”

His favorite sitcoms to watch span multiple generations: “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “Seinfeld,” Larry David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “Modern Family.”

Engvall said he found out early on about the importance of talking “about whatever you want, as long as it’s clean.”

Granted, he realizes, “senior citizens had sex, because we didn’t just magically appear,” yet people in an audience don’t need “graphic details” on the subject of making love and two people’s hearts charting their course as one.

Known long ago for his summary of the genders – guys’ basic needs of food, sleep and sex, and women focusing on details – and as stated in “Just a Guy,” Engvall said the show this weekend will yield a “sneak peak” of some content for his next comedy CD, planned as “Just Sell Him for Parts.” He said getting older, his vision on life in general has “changed a bit.” He said to expect some reflections about the “trials and tribulations” of “Dancing With the Stars,” kidney stones, life ahead with an empty nest and other inevitable effects of aging.

He thought back to writing “before I had kids,” then generating laughs as a father of youngsters, and “now that the kids are grown,” how “it’s a little different” to look at the world.

A native Texan, who began with career aspirations as a teacher, Engvall said he’s looking forward to this Grand Strand swing.

“I haven’t been to Myrtle Beach since I was a kid,” he said, remembering family times with “renting a beach house,” and activities such as catching crabs.

Thirty years of living in Southern California spurred a change of pace to relocate to Park City, Utah, and delving into such pastimes as golf and mountain hiking, and simply “loving life.”

Pondering something of late that made him think, “Here’s your sign,” Engvall delivered without a second wasted, because “God bless ’em,” such moments with people remain abundant.

He said from a farmer’s market, he and Gail had bought some raw shrimp for dinner, and the seller asked kindly, “You’re gonna cook these?”

Contact STEVE PALISIN at 444-1764.

If you go

Who | Bill Engvall

When | 6 p.m. Sunday

Where | Alabama Theatre, at Barefoot Landing, on U.S. 17 in North Myrtle Beach

How much | $55, $65, $75 or $125.

Other guest concerts | Mostly at 7 p.m.:

▪ Temptations and Four Tops, Friday, $49.95, $58.95 or $67.95.

▪ Mickey Gilley, Aug. 28. $34.95, $42.95 or $48.95.

▪ “The Ricky Mokel Show,” starring Grant Turner, Aug. 29. $29.95, $34.95 or $39.95.

▪ Clare Bowen and Charles Esten, from ABC’s “Nashville,” Sept. 5. $49.95, $57.95 or $65.95.

▪ Ray Stevens, Sept. 19. $49.95, $56.95 or $64.95.

▪ Kenny Rogers, Oct. 3. $54.95, $62.95 or $73.95.

▪ “John Mueller’s ’50s Dance Party – The Official Tribute to Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper,” Oct. 10. $29.95, $34.95, or $39.95.

▪ The Platters, Legacy of The Miracles, and The Coasters, Oct. 17. $34.95, $42.95 or $48.95.

▪ Loretta Lynn, Oct. 24. $44.95, $53.95 or $62.95.

▪ Annual Carolina Beach Music Awards, 3 p.m. Nov. 15. $40.95, $52.95 or $68. www.cammy.org.

▪ Eddie Miles’ “An Elvis Christmas,” Dec. 6. $22.95, $26.95 or $31.95.

“One the Show” | 7:30 p.m. several times every week, for $35.95, $43.80 or $49.25 ages 17 and older, or $17.95 ages 16 and younger; and through Sept. 3: free admission for as many as two children, 16 or younger, with a paid adult ticket.

Information | 272-1111, 800-342-2262 or www.alabama-theatre.com, and www.billengvall.com

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