RICH Hall is well known in the UK and is probably best known for appearances on the likes of QI, Have I Got News For You and Never Mind the Buzzcocks.

But the American comic – known for his dry wit, grouchy demeanour and material with a political sting – said it is on the stage where he thrives.

He said: “I just love the live experience. On stage, you get much longer than you do on TV to do a completely thorough performance piece.

“On shows like QI or Have I Got News For You, you’re just part of the process, and next week someone else will be on. You try and keep your head above water on those programmes, but after they are finished, viewers just wonder what’s on next. A panel show is a commodity, and people have forgotten it half an hour later.”

Rich reckons if fans go to see him on the road, it changes the dynamic entirely.

The 64-year-old, who was the inspiration for The Simpsons character Moe Szyslak, added: "If you have gone out of your way to go to a live show and spent two and a half hours in the theatre, chances are you’ll be talking about it on the way home.

“It’s no different from going to live music. Watching a musician live is a completely different experience from listening to his song on the radio. You have more of an artistic and emotional investment in the live performance. That’s what I love about it.”

The current tour Rich Hall's Hoedown, which is coming to Parr Hall on June 21, culminates in a tongue-in-cheek, foot stomping celebration of Americana.

He is no stranger to the guitar and won the Perrier Award at the 2000 Edinburgh Festival when he performed as his country and western-singing Tennessee alter ego, Otis Lee Crenshaw

Rich said: "The response has been astounding. I’m enjoying doing this particular show so much. The reaction has been very rousing. People come up to me afterwards and say, ‘I’d seen you on TV, but I didn’t realise you were this funny’. That’s the most satisfying response. At the risk of turning into the Willie Nelson of comedy, I don’t want to stop doing this show."

The comedian is also well known for his series of documentaries such as Rich Hall’s Countrier Than You, Rich Hall’s Presidential Grudge Match, Rich Hall’s Cattle Drive and Rich Hall’s Gone Fishing.

His most recent documentary Rich Hall’s Working For The American Dream aired on BBC Four in July and was met with acclaim and on BBC Radio Four he presented Rich Hall’s (US Election) Breakdown for BBC Radio Four,

But despite his many projects, Rich has no time for comics who think that TV takes precedence over everything else.

He added: “A lot of comedians can’t wait to get off the road, leave behind the crappy dressing rooms and the long drives and get back to the TV studio.

"But in the TV studio you just aren’t in control in the same way. People like Jerry Seinfeld and Chris Rock always want to get back to stand-up. They still want to be out there on the road, where you can be a one-man performer, director, writer, producer and editor.

“It sometimes sounds like a crime to go on the road all the time. But for me it’s the proof of the pudding. You hone your show every night. The great thing is, people who come out to see you enjoy the show, and then they come back.

"They trust you that the show is going to be good when they come to see you again. That’s really gratifying.”

So what can audiences expect from the Hoedown?

The first half of the show is an examination of the 'catastrophe' President Trump is wreaking on the world.

Rich said: “I love the fact that Trump is President. It’s great for comedy, even though it’s dreadful for the rest of the world and humankind.

“But people expect me to talk about it. You can’t avoid talking about Trump because he infiltrates every part of our world like a weevil. He’s like an egg sac which has bored into every aspect of our lives.”

Rich says he has to be fleet of foot when tackling the subject of Trump.

He added: "My material keeps changing because the guy changes every day on a whim. No Trump joke has any shelf life at all. It’s good for three hours – then it’s out the window. Jokes about the wall, for instance, are so last year. But at least it keeps you on your toes.”

The second half is a riotous tribute to the delights of Americana. With his band, the comedian performs around 10 songs, many of which are improvised based on material gleaned from the audience in the first half.

Rich said: “The people in the front row realise that they will be targets, but they will also be serenaded. I like to find a couple who have been married for a long time and write a song about how they first met.

“You have to keep your mind open to improvise. The best moments come when the audience say to themselves, ‘I didn’t see that coming.’ You paint yourself into such a corner that the audience think, ‘How is he ever going to get out of that?’ And then you escape. It’s a real challenge, but that’s what makes it funny.

“Sometimes I stumble, but that can be funnier than when you nail it. It’s very disposable material. It’s funny in the moment, but you can’t do it tomorrow.”