Originally from Tennessee, comedian Billy Wayne Davis has been performing and touring for the better part of a decade. He has worked with some of the biggest names in comedy, including Colin Quinn, Lisa Lampanelli, Louis C.K. and Mitch Hedberg. Davis has even toured as the feature act for national headliner Ralphie May.
The first thing you’ll notice about Billy Wayne Davis (heretofore referenced as BWD) is that he has a very brassy southern drawl. It’s a low soothing rich textured voice with a hint of hillbilly and redneck to it. BWD and I are both Southerners. We get it. You have preconceived notions about us. Like, yeah you think we’re funny but only in a “Oh listen to that adorable fella’ from the South trying as hard as he can to enunciate” kind of way. Well, Stereotype Sally, BWD is funny. So sit down and learn you something while listening to his new eponymous self-titled CD Billy Wayne Davis, produced in conjunction with Rooftop Comedy.
Often times the people who can make fun of things best are the people who are the closest to the experience. On his track “Rednecks and Gay Dudes” he makes the joke, “Rednecks and gay dudes hate each other…What I’ve noticed, though, is what they hate more than each other—sleeves.” As a comedy fan I immediately went to the Larry the Cable Guy persona with a cut-off flannel and just started laughing. A little while later Davis goes back to the joke saying, “Gay people are redneck kryptonite.”
His stories span his travels from Wichita, Kansas, to Texas, to Buckley, Washington, which according to Davis, “It’s a place. People live there evidently.” These anecdotes also include a somewhat sketchy incident with the Trans-Canadian border patrol. From there he shares his thoughts on musician Bob Marley. While partaking (or should I say “partoking”) of Mr. Marley’s favorite activity that wasn’t playing music he ponders the question of how Marley might have been different if he did cocaine instead of marijuana.
“Then it hit me,” Davis says. “He’d be Lil Jon.” BWD jokingly mimics the crowd’s reaction, saying, “What! The dude from Robin Hood?”
Perhaps BWD’s best moment comes near the end of the CD when he tells a story about getting arrested by a Washington State patrolman for driving under the influence. When he’s taken in for booking he’s asked his occupation, the question he’s been dreading. “Stand-up comedian” he replies. Upon these words the officer covers his name tag. I won’t spoil the name for you, but I guarantee you, if ever there was proof that destiny is a real thing, it’s evidenced in this joke.
Comedy fans everywhere should give Davis’ molasses-y drawl a listen. He’s a pariah standing on the outskirts of his own society preaching sermons of hilarity and human fallibility. Pick this CD up and see if you can’t find his remaining Southern sensibilities pleasing. No dipping tobacco or pointy white hats required.