On Jan. 9, at 8 p.m., the Crown Theatre will play host to one of the nation’s hottest touring comics. Ron White is bringing his Nutcracker Tour to Fayetteville for one night only. This tour follows on the heels of the success White had with his A Little Unprofessional Tour that made a tour stop in Durham last year.
White described this show as being very similar to the ones that have been so popular and successful in the past.
“This is a full blown, Ron White, smack you in the mouth hour and twenty minutes of comedy, which is what I always do,” White said, while adding, “There will be a little bit of stuff from my last record, because people won’t let me quit doing it, and then tons of new stuff.”
White’s last album, A Little Unprofessional, was released back in 2012, and according to him, could very well be his last.
White said, “I don’t know if you will ever see another one. The real experience of the show is to see it live, there is really no reason for me to release it through television or an album. I doubt I’ll release another album. I have released five and that is more than most comedians have ever done. I don’t know that I will release another one, but I say that every time.”
For White, touring is his preferred way of life. He speaks very highly of his fans and is very grateful for the success they have given him.
“I never quit touring… I have been one of the top three highest grossing comics in the country for 11 years in a row,” he said. “People ask me when I am going to quit, since I am 58 now. I tell them that my fans will let me know.”
White concluded, “As long as they are still coming out, I’m still going to do it. I love doing this so much, I can’t imagine a life without that kind of interaction. It is very addicting to have that much attention from that many people while you are talking. It is a very tough thing to walk away from.”
Apart from his individual touring success, White found tremendous success in his past as a part of The Blue Collar Comedy Tour. The tour, which he did with fellow southern comedians, Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall and Larry The Cable Guy from 2000 through 2003 catapulted White to another level of success.
It was that tour that caused his now famous routine “They Call Me Tater Salad” to really became a hit with audiences.
When asked about the true origins of his “Tater Salad” alter ego, White shared, “The first person to call me Tater Salad was a guy named Ross Hoskins, when we were on the USS Conserver in Hawaii at Pearl Harbor. We were having a family day on the ship and having a picnic on the front of the ship. Our cook was a horrible cook, but he made good potato salad. Actually, it was the ONLY thing I liked. On the ship, they boiled steaks; it was just horrible food. This guy (Hoskins) was down there at the picnic and they were eating all the potato salad because everything else sucked. So I called down to him and pleaded with him to come up to my station to relieve me before they ate up all that tater salad. From then on he started calling me Tater Salad.”
The origin of his Tater Salad nickname is not the end of the military connection for White, either. He is very outspoken in his support for the men and women of the armed forces.
White said that his latest endeavor for the troops will be out in the spring. White said, “I have been doing this thing called Ron White’s Celebrity Salute to the Troops. We are filming our fifth one for CMT in March. We are working to continue to bring awareness to the fact that this country is still at war. Those young men and women are our responsibility and that is something we need to live up to as a nation.”
Another set of trademarks of a Ron White show is his cigar and bottle of fine liquor that he partakes of while performing. That cigar and liquor, like his shows, have grown and improved as the years have gone by.
White talked about that evolution of his cigars and drink of choice, “Early on, the cigars tasted like cigarettes, because that’s what they were. From the very beginning I started with a beer and a cigarette because I couldn’t figure out what to do with my hands. Also, taking a sip or a puff was a great reason not to be talking, it’s a great pause. Then I went and quit smoking cigarettes and with the $70 a month I am saving, not smoking cigarettes, I’m now smoking $700 worth of cigars. I don’t even know what I am going to do with all that money I am saving by quitting cigarettes, I haven’t decided.” As for the types of cigars he smokes White noted, “I only smoke good cigars but I don’t smoke Cuban cigars. I would never do anything as Un-American as smoke a great cigar.”
His current drink of choice while onstage has evolved from the can of beer to his current first choice, Number Juan Tequila Extra Anejo; he owns the company.
When asked why fans should come out to the show instead of just popping in one of DVDs White said, “If you go to a show, it is more interactive than if you were seeing that show on television. The energy of the room is very contagious. It is easier to get caught up in it.”
White went on to say that, “If fans are familiar with my work and have never seen me live, it will be fun. White did offer up a warning about the content of the show as only he could in saying, “Don’t bring your kids to my show, and I won’t come to your house and cuss.”
Tickets for the show are available through Ticketmaster and the Crown Complex Box Office. Also, be sure to ask about the “200 Proof” VIP Experience and the “100 Proof” VIP Experience. Each package comes with premium seating, autographed DVDs and lots of other extras including a meet and greet after the show with White himself.
Photo: Ron “They Call Me Tater Salad” White brings his unique brand of comedy to the Crown Coliseum for an evening of hilarity.