Who Is Jeff Foxworthy?
Born on September 6, 1958, in Atlanta, Georgia, Jeff Foxworthy eventually quit his job to become a comedian. Foxworthy became famous as an opening act for country music superstars Garth Brooks and Emmylou Harris. His books have sold more than one million copies. His first recording, You Might Be a Redneck If... went quadruple platinum. In 1995, he starred on the sitcom The Jeff Foxworthy Show. He followed with gigs hosting popular television shows such as Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? (2007-10), The American Baking Competition (2013), The American Bible Challenge (2012-14), and as judge on Bring the Funny (2019).
Comedian, radio personality and talk show host Jeffrey Marshall Foxworthy was born on September 6, 1958, in Atlanta, Georgia. Foxworthy himself is from the South, but his father was a computer executive at IBM, and the family lived in the suburb of Hapeville, Georgia. Foxworthy claims that although his father had a high-level professional job, he displayed many of the traits Foxworthy would later describe as being "redneck."
Foxworthy was a class clown during his youth. In his spare time, he listened tirelessly to the recordings of comics like Bob Newhart and Flip Wilson, veteran comedians who didn't use profanity in their acts. Foxworthy was also a competitive football player in high school, playing in an aggressive manner that led to frequent visits to the local emergency room, but his slight build kept him from continuing in the sport.
Foxworthy planned to follow in his father's footsteps by majoring in computer technology at Georgia Tech and working at IBM. Yet he discovered that he gained more enjoyment from making co-workers laugh than working with computers. He eventually quit his job to devote his life to being a comedian. With the support of his wife, Pamela Gregg Grethe — a former actress he had met during one of his shows — he went on the road, laying the groundwork for his later success.
'You Might Be a Redneck If'
At a club date in Detroit, Michigan, Foxworthy discovered his comedic voice. Next to the club was a bowling alley offering valet parking; he was struck by the irony and immediately went to his room and compiled a list of factors that would make a person a redneck. For example, you might be a redneck if: "You ever mowed your lawn and found a car" or "You stare at a can of orange juice because it says concentrate."
Foxworthy has been very successful in marketing his comedic insights into the identification and spoofing of rednecks, which he defines as a "glorious absence of sophistication." Foxworthy has parlayed his brand of humor into his own huge popularity. With a television situation comedy, several recordings and many books, Foxworthy has become virtually a household name.
A&E Biography Special
Biography: Jeff Foxworthy – Stand Up Guy, premiering May 28 at 10/9c, will bring Foxworthy together with his close friends of more than 30 years – fellow comedians Kathleen Madigan, Ron White and Larry the Cable Guy – for an informal conversation about his life and how his family, friends and faith helped him get to where he is today. The one hour special will feature rarely seen photos and videos from Foxworthy’s personal archive and additional interviews with his manager Larry Burns and Jay Leno. Watch a preview:
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