"Oh, this terrible war," wrote his great-great-grandfather, Thomas Gaillard. "Who can measure the troubles -- the affliction -- it has brought upon us all?"
To this real-time anguish in voices from the past, Gaillard offers a personal remembrance of the shadow of war and its place in the haunted identity of the South. "My own generation," he writes, "was, perhaps, the last that was raised on stories of gallantry and courage . . . Oddly, mine was also the one of the first generations to view the Civil War through the lens of civil rights -- to see . . . connections and flaws in Southern history that earlier generations couldn't bear to face."
Frye Gaillard, who wrote extensively about Carter at the Charlotte Observer, was among the first to take the Carter postpresidency seriously and to challenge many accepted conclusions about Carter's term in office. Carter was not an irresolute president, says Gaillard, but rather one so certain of his own rectitude that he misjudged the importance of "selling" himself to America. Ranging across the highs and lows of the Carter presidency, Gaillard covers the energy crisis, the Iran hostage situation, the Camp David Accords, the Panama Canal and other treaties, and the new diplomatic emphasis on human rights.
Carter's established priorities did not change once he was out of office, but he was far more effective outside the strictures of presidential politics. Gaillard's coverage of this period includes Carter's friendship with Gerald R. Ford, his work through the Carter Center on disease control and election monitoring, and his association with Habitat for Humanity.
Prophet from Plains locates Carter in the tradition of Old Testament prophets who took uncompromising stands for peace and justice. Resisting the role of an above-the-fray elder statesman, Carter has thrust himself into international controversies in ways that some find meddlesome and others heroic.
Born into deep poverty, married at thirteen, mother of six, and a grandmother by the time she was twenty-nine, Loretta Lynn went on to become one of the most prolific and influential songwriters and singers in modern country music. Here we see the determination and talent that led to her trailblazing career and made her the first woman to be named Entertainer of the Year by the Country Music Association and the first woman to receive a gold record in country music.
Now, in I Lived To Tell It All, George Jones supplies a no-holds-barred account of his excesses and ecstasies. How alcohol ruled his life and performances. How violence marred many friendships and relationships. How money was something to be made but never held on to. And, finally, how the love of a good woman can ultimately change a man, redeem him, and save his life.
The Story of a Life with Strings Attached
Brad Paisley is one of country music’s leading men—admired as a recording artist, a performer, a songwriter, and a guitar slinger. This was not always so. In Diary of a Player, Paisley for the first time fully retraces his entire musical and personal journey to date. And it all began with a loving grandfather who gave eight-year-old Brad Douglas Paisley a Sears Danelectro guitar—the Christmas gift that would alter Brad’s life forever. In Brad’s own words, we read his emotional tribute to his late great “Papaw,” Warren Jarvis, who sparked his dream come true:
When I was eight I got a gift from my grandpa. No coincidence that around that time I also got an identity. See, no matter how I have changed, learned, and evolved as a person, the guitar has been a major part of it, and really the only constant. A crutch, a shrink, a friend, love interest, parachute, flying machine, soapbox, canvas, liability, investment, jackpot, tease, a sage, a gateway, an addiction, a recovery, a temptress, a church, a voice, veil, armor, and lifeline. My grandpa knew it could be many of these things for me, but mostly he just wanted me to never be alone. He said if I learned to play, anything would be manageable, and life would be richer. You can get through some real tough moments with that guitar on your knee. When life gets intense, there are people who drink, who seek counseling, eat, or watch TV, pray, cry, sleep, and so on. I play.
In his inimitable pull-no-punches style, Trace gives us the state of the union as he sees it, from the lessons of his boyhood in small-town Louisiana to what he’s learned headlining concerts around the world. Trace has worked oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, been shot in the heart, been inducted into the Grand Ole Opry, and braved perhaps the greatest challenge of all: being the father of five daughters. And shaped by these experiences, he’s sounding off.
• I’m incredibly frustrated with the state of American politics. If there were a viable third party, I’d seriously consider joining it.
• If anybody wonders who the good guys are and who the bad guys are in this world, just look at the way we teach our children as opposed to the way the fundamentalist Muslims teach their children.
• Organized labor now exists for the sake of organized labor, and not for the workers it once protected.
• I believe the easiest way to solve the illegal immigration enforcement problem is to go after the employers who hire illegal aliens.
• As a society, we’re unwilling to sacrifice our luxuries and our conveniences in order to conserve. We won’t change until we’re forced to.
• The war on terror is like herpes. People can live with it, but it’ll flare up from time to time.
Brash, ballsy, persuasive, and controversial, A Personal Stand isn’t just the story of Trace Adkins’s life; it’s the story of what life can teach all of us.
From the Hardcover edition.
"I'm so excited about Terry's new book."---Dolly Parton
From the Foreword by Ken Mansfield
"There are many stories about Waylon . . . the family man, the creative genius man, the quiet man, the king-of-the-six-day-roar-man, the uncommon man, the legendary man, the bad-ass man . . . they are all in this book."
In a signed copy of his autobiography, Texas-born country "Outlaw" icon Waylon Jennings penned a personal note to his son Terry: "I did my best. Now it's your turn." Two decades later, Terry Jennings finally completes the true story of his father's remarkable, unvarnished life with Waylon: Tales of My Outlaw Dad.
Born when Waylon was only nineteen, Terry came of age just as Waylon's career hit the stratosphere with hits like "I've Always Been Crazy" and "Good Hearted Woman," one of his famous Willie Nelson duets. Terry dropped out of high school and joined his dad on tour, and the two became more like brothers than father and son. On the road, they toured with legends like Nelson, Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, and Jessi Colter, Waylon's fourth and final wife. Together father and son led a hard-partying lifestyle centered around music, women, and drugs.
Waylon's success--critical acclaim, bestselling albums, sold-out tours, and even TV stardom on The Dukes of Hazzard--was at times eclipsed by his demons, three divorces, crippling debt, and a depression that Terry traces to the premature death of Buddy Holly. (Waylon was supposed to be on Holly and Ritchie Valens's doomed flight.) Through it all, Terry worked on the touring crew, helped manage Waylon's career, and became one of his father's closest confidantes. Debunking myths and sharing incredible never-before-told stories, this book is a son's loving and strikingly honest portrait of his father, "the greatest Outlaw country musician to grace this earth" and an unlikely but devoted family man. Waylon: Tales of My Outlaw Dad will resonate for generations of fans.
The twentieth century had three great female singers who plumbed the darkest corners of their hearts and transformed private grief into public dramas. In opera, there was the unsurpassed Maria Callas. In jazz, the tormented Billie Holiday. And in country music, there was Tammy Wynette.
"Stand by Your Man," "D-I-V-O-R-C-E," "Take Me to Your World" are but a few highlights of Tammy's staggering musical legacy, all sung with a voice that became the touchtone for women's vulnerability, disillusionment, strength, and endurance.
In Tammy Wynette, bestselling biographer Jimmy McDonough tells the story of the small-town girl who grew up to be the woman behind the microphone, whose meteoric rise led to a decades-long career full of tragedy and triumph. Through a high-profile marriage and divorce, her dreadful battle with addiction and illness, and the struggle to compete in a rapidly evolving Nashville, Tammy turned a brave smile toward the world and churned out masterful hit songs though her life resembled the most heartbreaking among them.
Tammy Wynette is an intimate portrait of a music icon, the Queen of Heartbreak, whose powerful voice simultaneously evoked universal pain and longing even as it belied her own.
We'll hear of the great love stories ranging from Johnny Cash and June Carter in the 1960s to Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood, who married in 2005. We'll get the truth of the tragedies that led to the loss of three stars all in the same month, starting the rumor of the "Opry Curse." We'll learn how after being stabbed, shot, and maimed, Trace Adkins calls his early honky-tonk years "combat country," and we'll find inspiration from DeFord Bailey, an African American harmonica player in 1927 crippled by childhood polio who rose to fame as one of the first Opry stars. Our hearts will break for Willie Nelson, who lost his only son on Christmas Day, and soar for Amy Grant and Vince Gill, who found true love.
Based on over 150 firsthand interviews with the stars of The Grand Ole Opry, these are stories that tell the heart of country--the lives that are lived and inspire the songs we love.
Now, in Without Getting Killed or Caught: The Life and Music of Guy Clark, writer, producer, and music industry insider Tamara Saviano chronicles the story of this legendary artist from her unique vantage point as his former publicist and producer of the Grammy-nominated album This One’s for Him: A Tribute to Guy Clark. Part memoir, part biography, Saviano’s skillfully constructed narrative weaves together the extraordinary songs, larger-than-life characters, previously untold stories, and riveting emotions that make up the life of this modern-day poet and troubadour.
He was there at the beginning of bluegrass. Yet his music, forged in the remote hills and hollows of Southwest Virginia, has even deeper roots. In Man of Constant Sorrow, Dr. Ralph Stanley gives a surprisingly candid look back on his long and incredible career as the patriarch of old-time mountain music.
Marked by Dr. Ralph Stanley?s banjo picking, his brother Carter?s guitar playing, and their haunting and distinctive harmonies, the Stanley Brothers began their career in 1946 and blessed the world of bluegrass with hundreds of classic songs, including ?White Dove,? ?Rank Stranger,? and what has become Dr. Ralph?s signature song, ?Man of Constant Sorrow.? Carter died in 1966 after years of alcohol abuse, but Dr. Ralph Stanley carried on and is still at the top of his game, playing to audiences across the country today at age eighty-one. Rarely giving interviews, he now grants fans the book they have been waiting for, filled with frank recollections, from his boyhood of dire poverty in the Appalachian coalfields to his early musical success with his brother, to years of hard traveling on the road with the Clinch Mountain Boys, to the recent, jubilant revival of a sound he helped create.
The story of how a musical art now popular around the world was crafted by two brothers from a dying mountain culture, Man of Constant Sorrow captures a life harmonized with equal measures of tragedy and triumph.
This book is a detailed assessment of her music as a singer and songwriter over the last forty years, and author Stephen Miller discusses how she shrugged aside the male-dominated world of Nashville in the early 1960s to take hold of her career, sell millions of albums and appear in films with Jane Fonda, Burt Reynolds and Sylvester Stallone.
Smart Blonde: Dolly Parton throws new light on her private life - her mysterious and closely guarded relationship with her husband Carl Dean, and her lifelong friend Judy Ogle as well as her seeming love of cosmetic surgery. This is the story of an artist and performer who is deadly serious about music but is often seen as frivolous about her image. The updated version of this Dolly Parton biography includes details of her Glastonbury 2014 performance, the cherry on the cake of her illustrious career. Finding new fans and putting on a characteristically entertaining show for old ones, the UK tour led to her most recent album being her biggest-selling album in the UK ever.
This incredible detailed Dolly Parton biography is a must for all fans, old and new, of this jewel in country music's crown. Boasting an authoritative account of her ongoing career, this is the only biography on the legendary lady, the queen of country, the philanthropist and perfect performer.
Streissguth delves into the country music scene in the late '60s and early '70s, when these rebels found themselves in Music City writing songs and vying for record deals. Channeling the unrest of the times, all three Country Music Hall of Famers resisted the music industry’s unwritten rules and emerged as leaders of the outlaw movement that ultimately changed the recording industry.
Outlaw offers a broad portrait of the outlaw movement in Nashville that includes a diverse secondary cast of characters, such as Johnny Cash, Rodney Crowell, Kinky Friedman, and Billy Joe Shaver, among others.
With archival photographs throughout, Outlaw is a comprehensive examination of a fascinating shift in country music, and the three unbelievably talented musicians who forged the way.
Starting out as a studio musician Campbell contributed to countless Sixties and Seventies records. His solo career as a country singer produced the classic hits ‘Galveston’, ‘By The Time I Get To Phoenix’, ‘Wichita Lineman’ and ‘Rhinestone Cowboy’.
He had a successful US TV show and co-starred with John Wayne in the 1969 film version of True Grit but gradually came unravelled after a series of failed marriages and descent into serious substance abuse.
Suffering short term memory loss even as he was inducted into The Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005, Glen Campbell had few constants in his life. One of them was the co-author of this book, his daughter Debby who witnessed it all as a long-time member of his touring band and was even around for the start of his decline into Alzheimer’s disease.
It makes this loving but unflinching reminiscence of a multi-talented musician and country singer doubly poignant.
Fox spent hundreds of hours observing, recording, and participating in talk and music-making in homes, beer joints, and garage jam sessions. He renders the everyday life of Lockhart’s working-class community in detail, right down to the ice cold beer, the battered guitars, and the technical skills of such local musical legends as Randy Meyer and Larry “Hoppy” Hopkins. Throughout, Fox focuses on the human voice. His analyses of conversations, interviews, songs, and vocal techniques show how feeling and experience are expressed, and how local understandings of place, memory, musical aesthetics, working-class social history, race, and gender are shared. In Real Country, working-class Texans re-imagine their past and give voice to the struggles and satisfactions of their lives in the present through music.
Menconi draws on early interviews with Adams, conversations with people close to him, and Adams's extensive online postings to capture the creative ferment that produced some of Adams's best music, including the albums Strangers Almanac and Heartbreaker. He reveals that, from the start, Ryan Adams had an absolutely determined sense of purpose and unshakable confidence in his own worth. At the same time, his inability to hold anything back, whether emotions or torrents of songs, often made Adams his own worst enemy, and Menconi recalls the excesses that almost, but never quite, derailed his career. Ryan Adams is a fascinating, multifaceted portrait of the artist as a young man, almost famous and still inventing himself, writing songs in a blaze of passion.
White examines the roots of Taylor's anguish, and his recurring problems with heroin and alcohol. There is an epic family history, an exploration of the stories behind Fire And Rain, and a frank account of the artist's time spent at Apple Records and Warner Brothers. With contributions from Paul McCartney, Carly Simon, Sting, the Taylor family and many other key figures, this edition is destined to become the definitive biography of the troubled hero. There is also an epilogue concerning the memorial concerts arranged by Taylor for the late author White, as well as an extensive discography and bibliography.
In this hugely entertaining memoir, Benson looks back over his life and wild ride with Asleep at the Wheel from the band’s beginning in Paw Paw, West Virginia, through its many years as a Texas institution. He vividly recalls spending decades in a touring band, with all the inevitable ups and downs and changes in personnel, and describes the making of classic albums such as Willie and the Wheel and Tribute to the Music of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys. The ultimate music industry insider, Benson explains better than anyone else how the Wheel got rock hipsters and die-hard country fans to love groovy new-old Western swing. Decades later, they still do.
More than fifty years ago, Willie Nelson’s beloved Christmas song “Pretty Paper” first hit the airwaves. And for all these years, Willie has wondered about the real-life Texas street vendor, selling wrappings and ribbons, who inspired his song. Who was this poor soul? What did his painful trials say about our loves, our hopes, our dreams in this holiday season—and in the rest of our lives?
It’s the early sixties and Willie Nelson is down and out, barely eking out a living as a singer-songwriter. The week before Christmas, he spots a legless man on a cart, selling wares in front of Leonard’s Department Store in Fort Worth, Texas. The humble figure, by the name of Vernon Clay, piques Willie’s curiosity, but Vernon is stubbornly private and—despite Willie’s charming queries—has no interest in telling his story. Willie is tenacious, though, and he eventually learns that Vernon is a fellow musician, a fine guitarist and singer.
When Vernon disappears, he leaves behind only a diary, which tells an epic tale of life-altering tragedies, broken hearts, and crooked record men, not to mention backroad honky-tonks, down-home cooking, and country songwriting genius. Deeply moved and spurred on by Vernon’s pages, Willie aims to give the man one last shot at redemption and a chance to embody the holiday spirit.
From the Hardcover edition.
His pure tenor voice, amazing guitar playing, and superb songwriting skills have earned Vince Gill eleven Grammies and seventeen Country Music Association Awards--making him the biggest CMA winner of all time. But it's the man behind the music who inspires so much love and devotion from his fans and his peers. Humble, wholesome, funny, and kind, Vince Gill is a superstar with heart--and his numerous volunteer activities raise millions of dollars for charity every year.
From his childhood as the son of a banjo-playing judge in Oklahoma to his roots in Kentucky bluegrass music . . . from his years in Los Angeles as the lead singer for the acclaimed group Pure Prairie League to his first forays into Nashville . . . from his mastery of bluegrass, rock, pop, and country to his acclaim as the host of the annual Country Music Association Awards national telecast . . . here is the heartwarming story of an inspiring man who gives his all for the future, for the fans, and . . .
FOR THE MUSIC
Vince Gill has won eleven Grammy Awards and seventeen Country Music Association Awards and has sold more than fifteen million albums worldwide.
From the Paperback edition.
This interdisciplinary collection of essays is the first book-length effort to examine how gender conventions, both masculine and feminine, have structured the creation and marketing of country music. The essays explore the uses of gender in creating the personas of stars as diverse as Elvis Presley, Patsy Cline, and Shania Twain. The authors also examine how deeply conventions have influenced the institutions and everyday experiences that give country music its image: the popular and fan press, the country music industry in Nashville, and the line dance crazes that created the dance hall boom of the 1990s.
From Hank Thompson's "The Wild Side of Life" to Johnny Cash's "A Boy Named Sue," from Tammy Wynette's "Stand by Your Man" to Loretta Lynn's ode to birth control, "The Pill," "A Boy Named Sue" demonstrates the role gender played in the development of country music and its current prominence.
Meticulously researched and lovingly written, it is a look at a world and a culture that, rather than passing, has continued to exist in the music that is the legacy of the Carters—songs that have shaped and influenced generations of artists who have followed them.
Brilliant in insight and execution, Will You Miss Me When I'm Gone? is also an in-depth study of A.P., Sara, and Maybelle Carter, and their bittersweet story of love and fulfillment, sadness and loss. The result is more than just a biography of a family; it is also a journey into another time, almost another world, and theirs is a story that resonates today and lives on in the timeless music they created.
In a masterful biography laden with new revelations, veteran country music journalist/historian Rich Kienzle offers a definitive, full-bodied portrait of legendary country singer George Jones and the music that remains his legacy. Kienzle meticulously sifted through archival material, government records, recollections by colleagues and admirers, interviewing many involved in Jones’s life and career. The result: an evocative portrait of this enormously gifted, tragically tormented icon called “the Keith Richards of country.”
Kienzle chronicles Jones’s impoverished East Texas childhood as the youngest son of a deeply religious mother and alcoholic, often-abusive father. He examines his three troubled marriages including his union with superstar Tammy Wynette and looks unsparingly at Jones’s demons. Alcohol and later cocaine nearly killed him until fourth wife Nancy helped him learn to love himself. Kienzle also details Jones’s remarkable musical journey from singing in violent Texas honky tonks to Grand Ole Opry star, hitmaker and master vocalist whose raw, emotionally powerful delivery remains the Gold Standard for country singers.
The George Jones of this heartfelt biography lived hard before finding contentment until he died at eighty-one—a story filled with whiskey, women and drugs but always the saving grace of music.
Illustrated with eight pages of photos.
This book strips away layers of myth to illuminate the cultural milieu that spawned such seminal blues and jazz musicians as Blind Lemon Jefferson, Buster Smith, and T-Bone Walker and that was also an incubator for the growth of western swing.
Expanding upon the original 1998 publication, this Texas A&M University Press edition offers new research on Deep Ellum’s vital cross-fertilization of white and black musical styles, many additional rare historical photographs, and an updated account of the area in the early years of the twenty-first century.
Musicians by trade, Slim and Howdy have each come to a figurative crossroads in their lives. As fate would have it, they meet at these crossroads, never realizing it's a turning point in their lives. Forced by circumstances to share a truck, they take to the road in pursuit of a common goal--to make it as musicians on the country music circuit.
But it seems no matter where these two travel, trouble finds them. Whether it's turning the tables on a crooked card shark who takes everything they have, or fending off the raging boyfriend of that friendly gal from last night, the guys are constantly needing to outwit the world. And when their friend and boss Jodie Lee disappears, their resourcefulness will truly be tested. Each of the guys has his theory, but they'll need to work together to get to their friend before time runs out.
For Cash, as for many celebrities, renown was the product of both hard work and luck. Often a visionary and always a tireless performer, he was subject to a whirlwind of social, economic, and cultural countercurrents. Nine Choices explores the tension between Cash's desire for mainstream success, his personal struggles with alcohol and drugs, and an ever-changing cultural landscape that often circumscribed his options.
Drawing on interviews, archival research, and textual analysis, Jonathan Silverman focuses on Cash's personal and artistic choices as a way of understanding his life, his impact on American culture, and the ways in which that culture in turn shaped him. Cash made decisions about where he would live, what he would play, who would produce his albums, whether he would support the Vietnam War, and even if he would flip his famous "bird" -- the iconic image of Cash giving the finger which is now plastered on posters and T-shirts everywhere -- in the context of cultural forces both visible and opaque. He made other decisions in consultation with a variety of people, many of whom were chiefly concerned with the reaction of his audiences.
Less a conventional biography than a study of the making of an identity, Nine Choices explores how Johnny Cash sought to define who he was, how he was perceived, and what he signified through a series of self-conscious actions. The result, Silverman shows, was a life that was often tumultuous but never uninteresting.
From Oklahoma small town girl to platinum recording artist, Carrie Underwood has transformed before America's eyes like a character in a modern fairy tale. Though Carrie began singing at the precocious age of three in her church choir, by the time she was twenty-one, a career in singing was far from her mind. Instead, the college senior was looking forward to graduation and pursuing a career in broadcast journalism.
One fateful day in 2004, though, Carrie looked up the audition locations for the fourth season of American idol. With no professional singing experience, Carrie was certain she would not be chosen to go to Hollywood. Much to her surprise, however, judges Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, and Randy Jackson loved the country sound of the small town girl. In 2005, Carrie breezed through the competition to become the fourth American Idol.
The fairytale wasn't quite over yet. Since her American Idol victory, Underwood has become one of the biggest names in country music, making three platinum albums. Underwood has won multiple Billboard Awards, Country Music Awards, American Music Awards, and five Grammy Awards. She has crisscrossed North America several times, performing in front of sold-out crowds to millions of fans.
Who is this singer with the incredible voice, the youngest ever artist ever nominated for a Country Music Association Award, and winner of the Grammy Award for Best New Artist? Jo Sgammato traveled from Nashville to LeAnn's hometown of Pearl, Mississippi, then followed her path to Dallas and beyond to reveal her inspiring life. From singing at eighteen months through dazzling performances at talent shows, opry stages and sports arenas, here is the heartwarming story of a determined young singer and an American family whose dedication made A DREAM COME TRUE.
From the Paperback edition.
This enhanced edition includes:
Exclusive video footage prepared specifically for the enhanced eBook that has never been seen before. Rare audio clips.
"[Peterson] restores to the music a sense of fun and diversity and possibility that more naive fans (and performers) miss. Like Buck Owens, Peterson knows there is no greater adventure or challenge than to 'act naturally.'"—Ken Emerson, Los Angeles Times Book Review
"A triumphal history and theory of the country music industry between 1920 and 1953."—Robert Crowley, International Journal of Comparative Sociology
"One of the most important books ever written about a popular music form."—Timothy White, Billboard Magazine
Sparked by public outcry following a proposal to pull country music and the Opry from WSM-AM in 2002, Craig Havighurst scoured new and existing sources to document the station’s profound effect on the character and self-image of Nashville. Introducing the reader to colorful artists and businessmen from the station’s history, including Owen Bradley, Minnie Pearl, Jim Denny, Edwin Craig, and Dinah Shore, the volume invites the reader to reflect on the status of Nashville, radio, and country music in American culture.
This book recounts the fascinating life of Roni Stoneman, the youngest daughter of the pioneering country music family, and a girl who, in spite of poverty and abusive husbands, eventually became "The First Lady of Banjo," a fixture on the Nashville scene, and, as Hee Haw's Ironing Board Lady, a comedienne beloved by millions of Americans nationwide.
Drawn from over seventy-five hours of recorded interviews, Pressing On reveals that Roni is also a master storyteller. In her own words and with characteristic spunk and candor, she describes her "pooristic" ("way beyond 'poverty-stricken'") Appalachian childhood, and how she learned from her brother Scott to play the challenging and innovative three-finger banjo picking style developed by Earl Scruggs. She also warmly recounts Hee Haw-era adventures with Minnie Pearl, Roy Clark, and Buck Owens; her encounters as a musician with country greats including Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash, June Carter, and Patsy Cline; as well as her personal struggles with shiftless and violent husbands, her relationships with her children, and her musical life after Hee Haw.
A volume in the series Music in American Life
Johnny Cash's popularity seems to have reached new heights during 1994, making this Catalog, along with the two earlier discographies, invaluable to fans, who will appreciate the comprehensive coverage. That coverage includes over 1,000 song titles on 228 different record labels, 431 singles, 108 extended-play albums, 1,408 long-play albums, and 254 compact discs from the United States, Canada, and 26 foreign countries.
A celebration of music and storytelling, other contributors include Hal Ketchum, Janis Ian, Mark D. Sanders, Tom T. Hall, Marshall Chapman, and Robert Hicks, among many other notable Nashville luminaries.
“I learned early in life that country is not a place on a map. Country is a place in your heart. In your soul. In the very depth of your being.” —Bill Anderson
“One of the things I like most about country life is that nothing much has really changed . . . My grandchildren and I are still walking and hunting in the same woods and fishing in the same creeks as I did with my father.” —President Jimmy Carter
“Food was at the heart of our home. And, other than those troublesome vegetables, I loved all of it. We fried everything—we’d have even fried water if we could’ve.” —Keith Anderson
“I can’t imagine what my life would have been without peaceful days, mountain streams, homegrown and home-cooked food, country church, and all-day singing with dinner on the grounds with family and friends.” —Dolly Parton
“Growing up country—there’s nothing like it. It’s growing up with your grandmother and granddaddy around . . . it’s a lot of love when you need it, great cooking in the kitchen, and always being real.” —Eddie Montgomery
Blackberry pie on the window ledge. The Grand Ole Opry on the radio. Sunday dinners on the table. Families swinging on the front porch after a hard day’s work. It’s all part of the country way of life.
Here, legendary country music singer Charlie Daniels introduces and edits a collection of heartfelt essays from an all-star cast of contributors on what it means to grow up country.
United by a love of music, these notables show us that country means more than just the twang of a guitar. They share a belief in hard work, integrity, strength of character, and having the courage not to quit. The stories here tell of rustic upbringings and rich spirits, of parents who believed in tough love and old-fashioned common sense, and of a strong sense of community, pride in your country, and a love of the natural world.
You’ll get an intimate glimpse into the lives of:
Country music royalty and all-time greats: such as Dolly Parton, Barbara Mandrell, Brenda Lee, Dobie Gray, and Lee Greenwood
Southern rock gods: such as Gary Rossington and Donnie Van Zant
The newest crop of stars: such as Sara Evans, Toby Keith, and Clint Black
Special guests: such as former president Jimmy Carter, and seven-time all around rodeo champion Ty Murray
These snapshots show how living country has allowed our favorite singers, songwriters, and stage performers to make a career out of doing what they love while never forgetting that when you’ve grown up country, home isn’t just a place where you live, it’s a state of the heart.