Bill Engvall

William Ray Engvall Jr. (born July 27, 1957)[1] is an American comedian and actor best known for his work as a stand-up comic, his signature "Here's Your Sign" bit, and as a member of the Blue Collar Comedy group.

Bill Engvall
Engvall performing at the USO Gala in the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C. on October 7, 2010
Birth nameWilliam Ray Engvall Jr.
Born (1957-07-27) July 27, 1957
Galveston, Texas, U.S.
Years active1988–present
GenresCountry comedy
observational comedy
Subject(s)Southern American culture
everyday life
Mary Gail Watson (m. 1982)
Notable works and rolesBlue Collar Comedy Tour
The Jeff Foxworthy Show
Country Fried Home Videos
Delta Farce
The Bill Engvall Show
Lingo (2011 Run)

Early life

Bill Engvall was born in Galveston, Texas. Following graduation from Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas, Engvall attended Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, intending to earn a bachelor's degree and become a teacher.[2] While at Southwestern he was a member of Xi Chapter of the Kappa Alpha Order. Engvall left college without graduating and worked a series of jobs, including tour guide at Inner Space Caverns, and disc jockey in a Dallas, Texas nightclub.[3] It was while working as the club DJ that he first ventured into stand-up comedy at amateur and open mic nights around Dallas.


In 1990, Bill Engvall moved to Southern California to dedicate full-time to comedy. Early notoriety came from hosting the cable show A Pair of Jokers with Rosie O'Donnell and an appearance on The Golden Palace where he played Blanche's son Matthew, a stockbroker turned aspiring comic. Other early appearances included hosting A&E Networks An Evening at The Improv as well as stand-up routines on The Tonight Show and the Late Show with David Letterman.[4]

A career breakthrough happened in 1992 when Engvall was named Best Male Standup at the American Comedy Awards. His first role as a series regular came soon after when he was cast in the ABC series Delta, starring Delta Burke. However, the show only lasted one season and Engvall returned to making the rounds of comedy clubs and the occasional television appearance until 1996, when he was cast with fellow comic and best friend Jeff Foxworthy in the NBC version of The Jeff Foxworthy Show. Signed by Warner Bros. Records in 1996, Engvall released the first of a series of highly successful comedy albums, Here's Your Sign, based on his signature stage bit. The album was certified Platinum and peaked at #5 on the Billboard Country album chart, thanks in part to the single and music video of the same title on which he collaborated with country singer Travis Tritt.[5]Eight more comedy albums followed, including Dorkfish in 1998, and the most recent, 2009's Aged and Confused.

In 2011, he also attended the NASCAR After The Lap event in Las Vegas.

Blue Collar Comedy Tour

In 2000, Jeff Foxworthy and Engvall launched the first of six Blue Collar Comedy Tours.[6] The tours also featured Ron White and Larry the Cable Guy and were largely responsible for their breakout success. Each of the six years of the tour were very successful and spawned three films, a satellite radio show, and a television show titled Blue Collar TV on The WB Network.

Game show host

On June 6, 2011, Engvall began a new chapter in his career as he took over as host of the re-launched Lingo on GSN.[7]According to an interview in American Profile magazine, Engvall said that he jumped at the chance to host the show, citing the fun that his friend Foxworthy had hosting Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? Engvall had been a fan of Lingo when it aired a few years previously before ending in 2007, admitting that his wife always beat him to the answers. When asked if there were any plans to have buddies Foxworthy or Larry the Cable Guy appear on Lingo, he replied, "You never know! I would love to have them on the show because it would be a blast. I would really dig that."[8]

Dancing with the Stars

In 2013, Engvall was announced as a contestant on the 17th season of Dancing with the Stars paired with professional dancer Emma Slater.[9] In the first week, he danced the Foxtrot and received a score of 18. The second week was Latin week and he saw some higher scores from the judges receiving a 21 for his Jive. And the third week of competition, Bill saw his highest score of 24 with a Paso Doble to the Lone Ranger theme song. Throughout the rest of the show, the judges usually placed Engvall and Slater at the bottom of the leaderboard, but an enormous fan base kept them in the competition, resulting in higher-scoring contestants, e.g. Christina Milian, Snooki, Brant Daugherty, Elizabeth Berkley, and Leah Remini being voted out instead.

On November 18, Engvall and Slater made it to the finals, along with Amber Riley, Jack Osbourne and Corbin Bleu. The two finished in 4th place.

Personal life

Bill and Gail Engvall (born August 5, 1960) have been married since December 18, 1982. They have a daughter named Emily (born November 24, 1986), a 2008 graduate from the University of Puget Sound, as well as a son, Travis (born June 25, 1991), a 2015 graduate from Northern Arizona University; both of whom are often mentioned during his routines. Engvall resides in southern California when not on tour and maintains a blog for the Los Angeles Angels on the website of Fox Sports West.[10][11]



Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales thresholds)
US Country US US Comedy
Here's Your Sign[A] 5 50
  • US: Platinum
  • Release date: October 13, 1998
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
16 119
  • US: Gold
Here's Your Christmas Album[B]
  • Release date: September 28, 1999
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
Now That's Awesome
  • Release date: August 22, 2000
  • Label: BNA Records
14 133
Cheap Drunk: An Autobiography
  • Release date: September 24, 2002
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
Here's Your Sign Reloaded
  • Release date: November 11, 2003
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
37 12
A Decade of Laughs
  • Release date: October 26, 2004
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
27 183 1 [C]
15° Off Cool
  • Release date: February 27, 2007
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
16 93 1
Aged and Confused
  • Release date: October 6, 2009
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
29 159 2
Them Idiots: Whirled Tour
(with Jeff Foxworthy and Larry the Cable Guy)
  • Release date: March 13, 2012
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
45 1
Ultimate Laughs
  • Release date: March 9, 2014
  • Label: Warner Bros. Records
Just Sell Him For Parts
  • Release date: February 6, 2017
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US Country US CAN Country
1997 "Here's Your Sign (Get the Picture)" (with Travis Tritt) 29 43 72 N/A
"Warning Signs" (with John Michael Montgomery) 56
1998 "It's Hard to Be a Parent" 72
"I'm a Cowboy" 60 Dorkfish
"Here's Your Sign Christmas" 50
1999 "Hollywood Indian Guides" 72 N/A
2000 "Blue Collar Dollar"
(with Jeff Foxworthy and Marty Stuart)
63 Blue Collar Comedy Tour
"Now That's Awesome"
(with Neal McCoy, Tracy Byrd and T. Graham Brown)
59 Now That's Awesome
"Shoulda Shut Up" (with Julie Reeves, uncredited) 71
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Other charted songs

Year Single Peak positions Album
US Country
1999 "Here's Your Sign Christmas" (re-entry) 39 Here's Your Christmas Album
2000 "Here's Your Sign Christmas" (re-entry) 46

Music videos

Year Video Director
1997 "Here's Your Sign (Get the Picture)" (with Travis Tritt) Jim Yukich
"Warning Signs" (with John Michael Montgomery) Peter Zavadil
1998 "I'm a Cowboy"
"Here's Your Sign Christmas"
1999 "Hollywood Indian Guides"
2000 "Blue Collar Dollar" (with Jeff Foxworthy and Marty Stuart) Thomas Smugala
"Now That's Awesome" Peter Zavadil

List of works


  • Just a Guy: Notes from a Blue Collar Life, St. Martin's Press 2007, ISBN 0-312-36267-6


Year Title Role Notes
1982 Split Image Student
1984 Not for Publication Second photographer
1990 Designing Women Bill Episode: "Tough Enough"
1992–1993 Delta Buck Overton 17 episodes
1993 The Golden Palace Matthew Devereaux Episode: "Say Goodbye, Rose"
1996–1997 The Jeff Foxworthy Show Bill Pelton 14 episodes
2003 Blue Collar Comedy Tour: The Movie
2004 Blue Collar Comedy Tour Rides Again
2004 Here's Your Sign Live Live
2004–2006 Blue Collar TV Various 47 episodes
2005 Mobile Home Disaster
2006 Blue Collar Comedy Tour: One For the Road
2006–2009 Country Fried Home Videos Host
2007 Family Guy Duke Dillon (voice) Episode: "Boys Do Cry"
2007 Delta Farce Bill Little
2007–2009 The Bill Engvall Show Bill Pearson 30 episodes
2008 Country Fried Planet
2008, 2015 Celebrity Family Feud
2008 Bait Shop Bill Dugan Video
2009 Strawberry Wine
2009 Cowboy Dreams Bill Short
2009 All's Faire in Love Mr. Mendelson
2009 CMT Music Awards Host
2010 Leverage Duke Penzer Episode: "The Boost Job"
2010 Bed & Breakfast: Love is a Happy Accident Pete Sullivan
2011 Lingo Host
2011 Hawthorne Det. James 'Jimmy' Dupree Three episodes
2012 Kiss at Pine Lake Frank McDowell TV movie
2013 Bounty Hunters Bill 12 episodes
2014 Do It Yourself Dale TV movie
2015 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire
2015 Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! Gary Martin Hays TV movie
2015 Catching Faith Coach Z
2015–2016 Celebrity Name Game Himself / Celebrity Player Three episodes with Nicole Sullivan
2016 Hell's Kitchen Himself / Restaurant Patron Episode: "8 Chefs Compete"
2016 The Neighbor Troy
2016 Wish For Christmas Santa
2016 Last Man Standing Reverend Paul Three episodes
2017 Mr. Invincible Eddie King In post-production


  1. "Bill Engvall: Biography". TV Retrieved 2011-06-05.
  2. "The Bill Engvall Show bio". Archived from the original on 2012-01-06. Retrieved 2011-06-05.
  3. "Bill Engvall biography". Retrieved 2011-06-05.
  4. "Bill Engvall biography". Retrieved 2011-06-05.
  5. "The Bill Engvall Show bio". Archived from the original on 2012-01-06. Retrieved 2011-06-05.
  6. New York Times
  7. GSN Bringing Lingo Back with New Host
  8. American Profile newsmagazine. Article title: "Q&A with Bill Engvall". June 5, 2011
  10. An interview with Bill Engvall: blogging, acting, a new outlook. Archived April 25, 2012, at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 2011-06-11
  11. Main page of Bill Engvall's LAA Blog Retrieved 2013-09-30
Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Alexandra Raisman & Mark Ballas
Dancing with the Stars (US) semifinalist
Season 17 (Fall 2013 with Emma Slater)
Succeeded by
James Maslow & Peta Murgatroyd
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