Eleven People We'd Like To See As The Next Voice Of Big Tex.
Yesterday, State Fair of Texas spokeswoman Sue Gooding confirmed that Bill Bragg, the voice of Big Tex for the past 11 years, would not be returning to that post when the new, bigger, better, 21st-century version of statue will be unveiled later this year.
Though Bragg and his predecessor, Sonny Ray Stolz, both earned the iconic position through a contest, Gooding has already stated there will not be auditions for the next Big Tex voice this time around — although she still claims she'll be listening to all emailed submissions.
With that in mind, we'd like for the Fair to consider the following list of candidates for the position.
After all, since they're working with that giant new Big Tex budget and all, the Fair's organizers should be able to attract some pretty prime talent this time around.
That said, these notable Texans would perfect for the job as far as we can tell.
Why it makes sense: The current voice of TXU's advertising campaign, McConaughey owns a very appealing set of sweet southern pipes. If organizers really want to go a new — much sexier — direction this year, Matt's their man.
Why it probably won't work out: McConaughey is still very in-demand in Hollywood these days with four films currently in the works. Even if the State Fair could compete with his very handsome A-list salary, who is to say he'd even want the job in the first place? Isn't the public better served if those shirtless abs aren't locked away in a trailer for 12 hours a day?
Why it makes sense: Though he was the second of many actors to voice Barney the Dinosaur in the locally produced Barney & Friends, Joyner appeared in more episodes (75) than anyone else on the series. Plus, that recognizable voice is already kid-tested and mother-approved.
Why it probably won't work out: When he left Barney & Friends in 2001, Joyner moved to Los Angeles to further his acting career, which has found him voicing the very Barney-esque, rapping bear, Hip Hop Harry.
Why it makes sense: Shortly after Big Tex perished last fall, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings was quick to say, “We'll rebuild him and make him better than ever for the 21st century.” Hmm, sounds an awful lot like the intro to Majors' old television series, The Six Million Dollar Man, doesn't it? For those that don't remember that intro went, it went like this: “Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We can make him better than he was. Better… stronger… faster.” But let's not forget Majors' recent local tie as well: The actor was in town recently, filming episodes of TNT's Dallas.
Why it probably won't work out: Like McConaughey, Majors is still very much in-demand for his acting chops. And, like Joyner, he doesn't currently live in the state.
Why it makes sense: A member of KTCK 1310-AM The Ticket's highly popular “Dunham & Miller” morning show, Keith is no stranger to the microphone. And when the members of that show execute their annual bit of interviewing Big Tex on the air, Keith is the man responsible for executing the very convincing voice impersonation.
Why it probably won't work out: Even if Keith's version of Big Tex weren't full of overtly racist remarks, we doubt the other two members of The Ticket's Marconi-nominated morning show would be willing to sacrifice what is arguably the most popular member of their team for the duration of the fair's run.
Why it makes sense:Who doesn't love Dirk? The man delivered the city its first NBA championship, for Christ's sake. And don't you want your Big Tex to sound like he's tall? You're just not going to find a more beloved seven-footer in town. Period.
Why it probably won't work out: Even though his nickname is the Big German and the fair's run fits perfectly into the Mavs' offseason, Nowitzki's Texas accent is just awful.
Why it makes sense: Who's bigger in this country right now than Beyonce? The correct answer: Nobody. They don't call her the Queen Bey for nothing. Who cares if she's a woman? Dallas is, at times, a pretty progressive city. If a woman can voice Bart Simpson, why can't one pull off a convincing Big Tex?
Why it probably won't work out: We're still not ready for this jelly.
Why it makes sense: He fits all the criteria: He's a notable Texan; he lives in Dallas; he's got a very recognizable, southern voice; and, since he retired, he's not really doing much else at the moment, except for maybe painting dogs from time to time.
Why it probably won't work out: Somehow, we don't see the Secret Service signing off on this one. Plus, going from POTUS to the voice of Big Tex does somehow seem like a step backward.
Why it makes sense: No matter what you think of former North Texan Dr. Phil McGraw as a person/television personality, you've got to admit that he does boast quite the nice set of baritone pipes.
Why it probably won't work out: Having a Big Tex constantly harping on folks for eating too many Fletcher's corn dogs might not be the new direction the Fair's organizers quite have in mind.
Why it makes sense: The multi-platinum-selling country artist was once the king of the Nashville scene. In recent years, though, the North Texan has had several drunken — and sometimes nude — run-ins with the authorities. What better way for Travis to revamp his born-again image than by landing the Big Tex gig?
Why it probably won't work out: If Bragg was fired because the Fair was worried about protecting its branding, then organizers aren't likely to tap a scandal-prone boozehound as his successor.
Why it makes sense: He's just as popular as Nowitzki. Plus, this native Texan most certainly has that much-desired southern drawl that the Big German lacks. Also, his future with the Rangers remains somewhat in jeopardy.
Why it probably won't work out: C'mon. How are you going to coop Mr. Baseball up in a cramped trailer during a potential Rangers postseason run?
Why it makes sense: The beloved locally-based actor is well-known for his roles in Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles and that batch of once-unavoidable Rodeo Ford ads that included the tagline, “We don't care how you get here folks, just get here!”
Why it probably won't work out: Last we saw Gilliam, who describes himself as “76-years-young,” he was portraying his trademark cowboy persona in a “Harlem Shake” video. Actually, come to think of it, he just might be the perfect man for the job.