Meet El Paso Comedian Sam Butler, Refried Comedy

Photo courtesy of Sam Butler

To be honest, I really wasn’t sure where to begin when it came down to writing about Sam Butler. I even told him he was a hard guy to write about! I’m not completely sure why because he’s really nice and funny. Some other key qualities the comedian offers is being a hard worker and extremely humble. He also gave me a lot of good information that was new to me. I may have also caught a strong case of writer’s block or perhaps a combination of the all of the above!

Don’t be surprised if you see Butler on national/worldwide TV specials in the future. He plans on taking his career that far or hopefully further! I’m sure it’s very possible because he doesn’t give up. Despite the past turmoil in his career and personal life, he continues to pursue comedy; even if he gets bombed off the stage! Butler mentioned he now has an excellent support system. His wife, Vicky Butler and fellow colleagues help him achieve success. He said his wife pushes him to do his best and give it all he’s got.

Butler has two daughters from a previous marriage. He said comedy has always helped him get through the hard times throughout his life. Prior to doing comedy full-time, Butler taught at El Paso’s Socorro High School and Keys Academy, an alternative school for at-risk students. Aside from comedy, he also owns a welding business.

“We live in a tough world with a lot of hardships. Comedy is taking a break from reality, Butler said.”

Butler is somewhat of a hidden treasure in El Paso. Well come to think of it, he really isn’t. He’s made appearances on local TV and radio stations. He performs at different venues in El Paso, Los Angeles, and other cities around the country. Sam also plays a huge role for Refried Comedy. He is Refried Comedy CEO Richard Villa’s right hand man. Villa has performed at many venues around the world, along with making appearances on HBO and Comedy Central specials. These are only a few of his accomplishments. Butler met Villa when the two performed at The El Paso Comic Strip in past years. A huge turning point in Butler’s career was when he and Villa did a show with Christopher Reid from 90’s hip-hop duo Kid ‘n’ Play a few years back.

“Refried Comedy started as a Latino based comedy show. The very first one started in Hollywood. It was known as Refried Fridays at the Hollywood Improv. It was the number one show in Hollywood. It sold out for 12 years in a row. Some of the biggest stars in comedy would drop by and do a spot on the show, he said.”

Comedians like Dave Chappelle, Gabriel Iglesias, George Lopez and Drew Carey performed at Refried Comedy shows in Hollywood. Besides El Paso and Los Angeles, Refried Comedy hosts shows in other cities such as Las Vegas and New York City. Butler said the company expects more expansion worldwide. Refried Comedy is already doing shows in different cities across Mexico and they eventually plan on touring Europe very soon. The group also helps up and coming local comedians get their name out there and perform. Butler jokes about everyday issues. For example, being broke and doing the walk of shame at Walmart. His Facebook page usually has jokes on it.

Refried Comedy El Paso typically hosts shows on a monthly basis at local restaurants, pubs and hotels. From April 9-12, Los Angeles based comedian Jason Collings will headline their shows at the following locations: Dominic’s Italian Restaurant, 6901 Montana, Inn of the Mountain Gods Casino in Mescalero, New Mexico, Shamrocks Irish Pub, 1618 Pleasanton Road, Fort Bliss and Hilton Garden Inn Las Cruces, 2550 Don Roser, Las Cruces, New Mexico. Tickets are $12 each and can be purchased at:

Collings made appearances on the Tonight Show and “Running Lines with Lenoci.” You can catch his episodes on YouTube. For more info, check out Refried Comedy El Paso’s Facebook page.

Like other comedians I’ve met, Sam’s love for comedy started at a young age. He grew up watching Mexican comedians like Chespirto and American comedians on Saturday Night Live. He began his own comedy routine in 2009.

“At a certain point I may have to leave El Paso but my family and roots will always be in El Paso.” “A lot of comedians have very fancy introductions before they go on stage. They may be describing some of their credits and their TV appearances but not me. All I ask before I go up on stage is that they say I’m from El Paso, he added.”



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