If ever there were a comic geared to one particular demographic, Bill Engvall is he. Hailed by many fans as one of the true protégés of Jeff Foxworthy (with whom he has often performed), Engvall caters to fans of "redneck comedy" -- one-liners and anecdotes about pickup trucks, beer guzzling, tailgating, deer hunting, and assorted acts of blue-collar mayhem. Oddly, Engvall (unlike, say, Larry the Cable Guy) often sports a far more polished look than many of his contemporaries with the same brand of material. Through it all, Engvall remained imminently successful and racked up a massive and loyal fan base of American everymen.
Born William Ray Engvall Jr. on July 27, 1957, in Galveston, TX, the future comedian/actor reportedly moved around a great deal with his family as a tyke. Engvall acted in local productions as a child and adolescent, then launched a series of successful routines at the Dallas Comedy Corner. He moved to Los Angeles with his wife in 1984, and first gained public recognition some time later with an appearance on the popular CBS sitcom Designing Women in the very early '90s and a guest-star spot on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (the mecca for standup comedians) just prior to Carson's departure. In 1992, Engvall landed a recurring role on the short-lived sitcom Delta (with Delta Burke as a struggling country singer); he played Buck Overton, the husband of Delta's cousin and number one fan, Lavonne (Gigi Rice). Unfortunately, ABC canceled that program after less than one year.