A character-driven stand-up act can be difficult for performers to maintain. As a comedian, it becomes increasingly difficult to keep the material fresh while staying true to your persona. And for an audience, the character can become tedious (as in Larry the Cable Guy). Yet Etta May remains Etta May. Over 25 years, shes as sassy and outrageous as shes ever been. The self-proclaimed Trailer Park Goddess still sells out clubs. May has been a winner of the American Comedy Awards Stand-Up Comic of the Year. She has appeared on MTV, Oprah, Comic Strip Live and CBS Sunday Morning. She regularly travels with the Southern Fried Chicks comedy tour, alongside Sonya White, Mia Jackson and Trish Suhr. This weekend at The Caravan, May will be recording her latest album Box Wine and Gas Station Chicken.
LEO: Lets start with a little bit about your home life, Etta.
Etta May: Four kids and a husband. My oldest boy, hes 17. His name is Bud. Corona, shes 16. Millers 13. And little Jack, hes 8. Because after three kids, I graduated to harder liquor.
You have talked about motherhood and raising kids. Who has more sass? You or your 16-year-old daughter?
Oh hell, no contest, my daughter! Shes gonna make a good stripper one day, though. She really is. Shes working at Hooters, right now. Which Hooters is like junior college to move up to all-nude down by the airport. So Im not worried about her. Thats the best part of having underachieving children. Theres no college bill in my future.
Is she going to be a Southern Fried Chick like her mother?
Oh no, she has no sense of humor. So no she wont be a Southern Fried Chick. Shes gonna be a White Trash Heifer.
How would you define a Southern Fried Chick?
A Southern Fried Chick is someone who is obviously from the South. But its a woman who has a sassy attitude with truth and conviction behind it. Because if you dont buy your line of bull, no one else will. We may not always be right, but were never wrong. You know that old saying? We rule the roost, and our husbands drink a lot.
Speaking of your husband. What must it be like to be married to Etta May?
Well heres a good how-do-ya-do. For our anniversary, he bought me a Fitbit. He was so excited. He swore to God he got it right. When he gave it to me, he had such love in his eyes. He said: Baby, I love you. And all I heard was: You big, fat hog. Its funny what men say and what women hear.
Maybe he was just listening to your act. You do talk a lot about losing weight.
Or lack thereof.
Hows that going?
Not good. Im the white-trash Oprah. You know how Oprah has lost and gained weight 75 times. Im in the larvae phase of Chunky Butt Oprah right now.
I know you dont like getting dieting advice. But do you have any diet advice to give?
I dont know. I have a skinny friend, and she says she weighs herself every day. If shes a little off, shell take it easy for a couple days. But for her, thats cutting down from two Tic Tacs a day to one. Shes really thin. But I cant weigh every day, and most fat women cant. If I get on the scale and Ive gained weight now Im depressed and want a Big Mac. I get on the scale, and if Ive lost weight, hell, I want to celebrate with a Big Mac. So its a no win situation.
I feel like you would be someone who keeps up with the Kardashians.
Heres whats wrong with this: Whats Kim Kardashian known for? A big butt. I got twice the butt. Ill put my butt against hers any day. And mine has more personality, because it has more dimples in it. When my butt smiles, its as cute as Shirley Temple. You know what I mean?
Thursday, May 2527
1250 Bardstown Road
$20 | Times vary