PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (July 12, 2012) – Veteran stand-up comedian Bob Nelson, who has appeared on shows hosted by Johnny Carson, David Letterman, Regis Philbin and Merv Griffin, has a new performance home at the Comedy Barn in Pigeon Forge.
Nelson performs at 5 and 8 p.m. nightly except Mondays.
Nelson opened for Rodney Dangerfield for eight years and was featured in two of Dangerfield’s HBO showcases. He is also known for appearances on the “Bananas” comedy television show.
“He is one of the best comedians performing today, has great fans and is a very funny guy,” said David Fee, president and co-owner of the Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group.
Nelson was a theater major and did summer stock at Nassau Community College on Long Island, N.Y.
“I was always the class clown,” Nelson said. “I was always trying to make people laugh in different ways, and I did very physical Jerry Lewis-type of stuff. It was always in me – a gift from God.
“Right out of high school I was working as an amateur clown with circus acts doing juggling, trapeze and trampoline,” Nelson said. “I almost joined the circus but found I could make more money as an amateur clown.”
Red Skelton was Nelson’s mentor.
“I wanted to be a family comic and not do dirty material, and Red encouraged me at a time when the whole industry was tilted against conservatives. He told me, ‘You are a clown like me.’ He praised me for not cursing.”