In 2010, Guinness listed "Larry King Live" as the longest-running talk show in a stable and consistent time slot, right before he decided to step down from late night.
After he retired from "Larry King Live," he did a series of specials for CNN, but as of earlier this month, that partnership also came to an end.
"Except they have to pay off on my contract," King said, explaining, "I did four specials, but this year we've got a political season coming and so much attention devoted to it. The specials we did, it just didn't work right."
He acknowledged, "There's a sadness to it, but it was an amicable parting."
It's bittersweet and has led to some new things, like the standup tour. Telling stories is something King has been doing for most of his career. Even while he was doing television and radio, he did a lot of guest speaking at conventions and sales meetings. Many of them, he said, were just plain dull.
"I tried to liven them up a little."
He developed a repertoire of stories. King's nephew Scott Zeiger, a Broadway show producer, suggested he could take those stories and turn them into an act they could take on the road.
"We're having a great time," King said. "I tell stories about growing up as a kid and stories about things that happened off the air. It's a real 'evening with,' and sometimes, if the theater is set up for it, we take questions from the crowd."
King's show at the Keith-Albee will also include a Q-and-A session following his performance.
King said he's never shied away from asking a question. Talking with the famous really didn't make him nervous.
"Basically, it's the same thing with that old cliché about how everybody puts their pants on one leg at a time. The president gets up and has breakfast just like you do. Sure, he has an interesting job, but most people think their jobs are interesting."
What makes people interesting to talk to, he said, is conflict.
"We all have things we have to deal with. We all have worries. It's maybe a different scale, but if you're worried about something big that's going to happen to you, that's the same thing as [President] Obama worrying about Iran.
"How you deal with that, that's what's fascinating to me."
Still, King said he has his regrets. There have been questions he wished he hadn't asked.
"Oh, when I was 22 and very young and very inexperienced, I had a priest on a show," he said. "I asked him how many children he had."
"Today that would be relevant, but then it was ridiculous."
Want to go?
WHAT: "Larry King: Standing Up"
WHERE: Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Thursday
INFO: 800-745-3000 or www.ticketmaster.com
Reach Bill Lynch at ly...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5195.