George Wallace grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, in a religious family… so it made sense that one of the first appearances he made was dressed in the robes of a Preacher. His monologue that night was an improvised send-up of the many Bible-belters he had watched as a youth…and he was a natural. He killed. A comedic star had arrived.
As George tells it, he wanted to be a comedian from the age of six. After his mother passed away when he was sixteen, he entered the workforce, and soon attended college at the University of Akron, graduating with a degree in marketing. He was soon after hired for what would be a short-lived job in advertising.
George’s dream of being a comedian had a strong hold on him. He eagerly left the advertising field and began performing stand-up, making a name for himself as a comer and eventually getting a job writing for The Red Foxx Show.
Writing comedy wasn’t enough and after only a year on the show, he found he longed for the stage. He went back to stand-up (starting on the same day and on the same stage as Jerry Seinfeld) and began winning numerous awards, including the prestigious American Comedy Award for “Best Stand-Up Comedian.” He opened for Diana Ross and other acts, did tons of television, guested on the Tonight Show quite often (Johnny Carson loved him), did every talk show and eventually guest starred in a multitude of sitcoms, dramas and feature films. And his gentle social commentary proved successful on radio, where he was a recurring guest on many morning drive shows.
Like many comics from “back in the day,” George eventually found a permanent home in Las Vegas, where he’s become a fixture at The Flamingo. One of his bits has been to walk onstage with a pad and a pen and “check off” the new jokes he wrote that day. Other comics have since borrowed that affectation. He’s also credited with creating the “Yo Mama” joke concept and it continues to be a highlight of his act today. His other famous bit, “I Be Thinkin,” encourages audience participation where George selects individuals in the crowd to go one on one with him. Needless to say, people have trouble catching their breath.
“What lazy S-O-B invented the Clapper? What do I have to invent so I don’t have to get off my lazy butt and go over and flip that light switch. My father had a Clapper 30 years ago—me.”
“All the buses now that want exact change…I figure if I give them exact change, they should take me exactly where I want to go.”
George is one of the most likeable talents on the circuit. He will always sign an autograph or take a picture and his shows can include giving away prizes like his CD’s or DVD’s. He loves the spontaneity of never knowing what will happen at a show. He prides himself on being a constantly evolving comedian and has said no one will ever see the same show twice. He follows through with that promise each and every time.
(Larry Dorfman is the author of “The Snark Handbook” series. Follow him on Twitter @SnarkHandBook and on Facebook here. For more comedy news and exclusive interviews visit our AmericasComedy.com Facebook fan page and follow us on Twitter @AmericasComedy!)
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About the Author: Lawrence Dorfman is the bestselling author (Yeah, right) of The Snark Handbook; The Snark Handbook: Insult Edition; The Snark Handbook :Sex Edition; and the forthcoming Snark Handbook: Politics and Government Edition (really good at the whole naming thing, eh?). He honed his snark chops while working in publishing for more than 30 years. Like you really care.