Tanya Tucker Kicks Off 2016 Tour This Month
Catching Up with Tanya Tucker
The last time Up To Tempo caught up with country music superstar Tanya Tucker, she was embarking on a nationwide tour. After taking a break at the end of 2015 to be with family for the holidays, Tucker is gearing up for another leg of her North American tour. Kicking off her 2016 tour in Shipshewana, Indiana on January 29th, Tucker took some time out of her busy schedule to speak with Up To Tempo's Brooklyn Brown-Sater.
|(Photo: Webster & Associate)|
I must say first off, the last time I interviewed Tanya Tucker, I was understandably nervous. I've listened to her music my whole life. This was more than an interview. This was a fan getting the chance to talk to one of her idols. The cool thing about Tanya Tucker is that she speaks with such humility that she quickly puts any nervous reporter at ease. I was thrilled when I was asked to do more promotion with her, and also less nervous. Speaking over the phone, Tanya talks to you in that recognizable raspy Southern drawl like she's talking to a friend.
Brooklyn Brown-Sater: Hi Tanya! Thanks for taking time to catch up with us. We've had such a great response from our last interview. How's the tour going since we last spoke?
Tanya Tucker: "Oh it's good. Everything's going good."
Any new or surprising things happening on the road?
"Oh well there's always something coming up. We're just getting over Christmas, and you know, kinda got lazy because of Christmas and New Year's. Kicked back. But now we've gotta get our tight jeans on and get out on stage. So we're getting back to what we really do. Our first date is at the end of this month. We're looking forward to getting back on the road.
That's the show at the Blue Gate Theater in Indiana, right?
"That's it, that's the one. We'll be coming in from Nashville. It's kind of cool when we can go out and work for several days and then come home for several days. It doesn't always work that way though. Sometimes you might do a couple shows and then be off a couple weeks. You feel like your starting over again. The dates are coming in. It looks like we might be doing 100 dates or so. I gotta get my hiking boots on, get ready, and climb the mountain."
Last time I spoke with you was for your Halloween show in Carmel, Indiana. You surprised your audience for the encore dressed as Dolly Parton.
(Laughing) "Well... I attempted to dress up like Dolly Parton."
It was great. And you covered a couple of her songs. "Coat of Many Colors" and "I Will Always Love You." The video that was posted online of you "I Will always Love You" got such a great response. I believe Dolly even tweeted about it.
"Really? Wow, I didn't even know there was a video of me doing that song."
"Really? Oh, wow, I haven't even seen it. Where do you see it?"
It was posted on YouTube and I think it was on your Facebook page as well.
"On my Facebook page? Wow, huh, I'll have to check that out."
It was nice that you covered it in your own fashion, but gave it that Tanya Tucker flavor. What other things can we expect?
"Well that was a last minute thing. So you never know. It's always last minute. (laughs) I don't have anything right off the top of my head that I'm working on. Just rehearsing. We're always working on making our music better. You know? Always practicing. I've got a good little band. Lord no, I don't know what else is gonna happen. You never can tell... We're always coming up with something."
Traveling on the road can sometimes be rigorous and tiring. You're on the road and away from home for long stretches of time. Are there any 'must haves' while you're touring?
"My dogs. My dogs travel with me everywhere. I take three, well, four with me at all times."
Just for fun, what are three items that will always be found in your purse?
"My phone. Depending on how big my purse is, my mini iPad. Lip gloss. Oh, and a little wooden cross from a monastery I carry everywhere with me."
You have an extensive catalog of songs. What would be your favorite song of yours?
"'Delta Dawn' is always going to be my favorite. I think it's just a great, great song. I don't get tired of singing' it. There's some songs that I recorded that I don't really get to perform; they're not good stage songs. We have to pick and choose what we perform, but 'Delta Dawn's my favorite."
I love that song. That's the first song of yours I heard, but I have to say my favorite is "Can I See You Tonight?"
"Oh yeah that's a good one!"
I blare that in my car and my mom used to sing "San Antonio Stroll" to me.
"That's a good one too. Yep. Those are two big requests we get. We get all kinds of requests for songs that I've thought people had probably forgotten about. We aim to please."
If you could sing with anyone, who would be your dream duet?
"Oh gosh! Now that's a big fat question because there's a lot of people on that answer. Gosh... I have a list of people. Eric Clapton. I wanna do something with him. Bob Dylan wants to do something. I'd like to do something with Tom Petty. I'd like to sing with Loretta. It'd be great to have a duets album. I'd love to sing with Tom Jones, too. I love his singing. That's a few of 'em. But, I have a whole list for sure. Merle Haggard's on it too."
You mentioned Loretta Lynn.
"Well, Loretta Lynn was my big hero. She was the one that I sang all of her songs when I was a kid and now she's one of my best friends. I've gotta go out and see her. I've been meaning to spend the night with her. One thing leads to another and all of a sudden we're 80 years old and she's my light. She's my little 'Retty. It's almost surreal because I used to watch her every Thursday night on the Wilburn Brothers' show when I was a kid. To know her and be able to call her or go see her is such a great thing for me. I just worship her. I think she's just a wonderful person and I just lover her to death."
We spoke about Dolly earlier. You actually worked with her in the 90's on her song "Romeo." What's something that sticks out about her?
"Well, Dolly is just like a little porcelain doll. So much incredible talent comes out of such a beautiful body. A beautiful person. She just has it all together. She's one talented lady. I really look up to her."
You've been in the business since the 1970's. What do you think it is about you that has kept your longevity going and your fans coming back?
"Gosh, I don't know, but I'm glad they do. I'm just glad they do. I've thought about that and I just don't have an answer. I guess perseverance; just not giving up. At any moment, it would be an easy thing for me to just stop. Some things come up that aren't so great or fun, but you get up on stage and do the best show you can do and go onto the next show. We leave them happy and hope they'll come back.
Well, you always leave us happy! Can't wait to see you January 29th at the Blue Gate Theater in Shipshewana, Indiana!
"I'm looking forward to it too Brooklyn! Looking forward to seeing you again."
Blue Gate Theatre
Rama, ON, Canada
Casino Rama Resort
Newberry Opera House
Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park
The Tarrytown Music Hall
Chatham Township, NJ
Plant City, FL
Florida Strawberry Festival
Municipal Auditorium of Greenville Texas
Bossier City, LA
Margaritaville Resort Casino___________________________________________________