Bob Saget Set to Host ‘Nashville Squares’

Comedian counts Johnny Carson, Gene Rayburn among his game-show host inspirations
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Game show CMT’s Nashville Squares begins on CMT Nov. 1. It’s Hollywood Squares with a country twist, and Bob Saget hosts.

Saget, a comedian, was host on America’s Funniest Home Videos and game show 1 vs. 100, and was in the cast on Full House. He said he’s been a fan of country music forever, at times incorporating quirky country songs into his standup act. That includes a tune from his 2007 tour called “My Dog Licked My--”, well, use your imagination. In Nashville Squares, Saget plays a song called Corn’s My Meat. He describes that one as “a vegan song.”

Saget counts Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson (“That voice, you go, oh!”) and Chris Stapleton (“I just think he’s another level”) among his top country acts. Tanya Tucker, he added, “is one helluva legend.”

Saget said the producers offered to let him riff as the host. “They said, we want you to do what you do,” he said. “When someone says that to me, I get excited.”

He described “a lot of screwing around” on the set. The celeb guests enjoy a cocktail or two on the show, said Saget, which loosens up the mood a bit. Guest stars include Carson Cressley, Gary Busey, Kyle Busch, Tanya Tucker and Ty Pennington.

Saget’s inspirations in terms of game-show hosts include Johnny Carson, who hosted Who Do You Trust?, and Groucho Marx, who hosted You Bet Your Life. He also mentioned Peter Marshall of Hollywood Squares and Gene Rayburn, who hosted Match Game. “The long stick mic,” he said. “You gotta like him for that.”

The host said getting Nashville Squares off the ground happened fairly easily. “It was really effortless,” Saget said. “If you’re having fun, the idea is, [viewers] will as well.”

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