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28 October 2014

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Otis Lee Crenshaw

Rich Hall as Otis Lee Crenshaw

"The best moment in your life - or any man's life - is when that women walks into a room full of people and stares across that sea of faces into yours and says, 'He's the one'. Most the time it's happened to me has been in a police line-up..."

The bourbon-soaked jailbird Otis Lee Crenshaw was created by Emmy award-winning comic Rich Hall in 1998.

A singer-songwriter, Crenshaw conforms to the worst stereotypes of American trash, hailing from Tennessee and leaving a string of broken marriages - all to women named Brenda.

Following a bravura performance at the Edinburgh Festival in 2000 - which bagged him a Perrier award - Hall brought his character to BBC TWO for a one-off show boasting whisky-laced songs, plus his thoughts on women, trailer parks and Southern white trash.

Filmed at London's Comedy Store, the show was part musical concert, part stand-up and part improv.

Chatting to members of the audience, Hall cleverly drew out information about their lives, which he then turned into songs, such as 'Big Dennis' ("There ain't a whole legacy of folk songs about office managers, is there Dennis?").

Other numbers performed included 'She Calls It Stalking, I Call It Selective Walking', his ode to mobile home dwellers 'Trailerland', musings on child abuse 'Uncle Muncle' and love song 'Do You Remember? (Well I Don't Cos I was Drunk)'.

During the show, he's joined by fellow comic Bill Bailey, and welcomes onto the stage Johnny Cash... played by Sean Lock.

Reflecting on his creation, Hall muses, "Otis can get away with stuff that I as a comedian couldn't. The best thing you can say about him is that he's an interesting, if frustrated, musician. He does really have something to say and by God people are going to listen".


Sean Lock
Johnny Cash
Rich Hall
Otis Lee Crenshaw
Bill Bailey
Stebbington Bailey


Rich Hall
Tom Poole
John Tiffney
Addison Cresswell
executive producer
Joe Norris
executive producer
Helen Parker
executive producer

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