Junior Samples (real name Alvin Samples, Jr.) (1926-1983) was an American comedian best known for his 14-year run as a cast member of the TV show Hee Haw.
Samples (born in Cumming, Georgia) was a stock car racing driver who went on the radio at the age of 40, and told a story about catching the largest fish ever seen in his home town. The story was a humorous fraud, and the recording of this radio story became a best-selling novelty record.
He was asked to become part of the 1969 cast of Hee Haw, and created a bumbling personality -- he often slurred his way through delivery, messing up jokes and forgetting lines -- more in line with Andy Kaufman or GG Allin than traditional comedy. In this way, Samples did much to contribute to the post-Laugh Insurrealist comedy of the show, with its strange combination of absurdistkitsch and down-home non-sequitors.
The gigantic Samples, whose weight sometimes neared 400 pounds, was on Hee Haw for 14 years, until he died of a heart attack at the age of 57 in 1983. He was nominated for two Comedian of the Year Awards from the Country Music Awards in 1969 and 1970, and released a number of other comedy albums.
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