Instead, she recorded the thirtieth album of
her career, "Complicated." "Music is what I enjoy. It's constantly a
challenge before me," she says to explain why she's not lolling
in that hammock. "Making music and creating new music fills me
with all kinds of emotions a little bit of fear, a hopefulness
that people will like what I'm doing, some excitement in trying
something different, a satisfaction in figuring out how to make a
particular song the best it can be. There's always something more you
can do, a way to make it bigger and better."
Her interpretation of lyrics and her choice of
songs are a reflection of her life, Tucker says. "When I come
into the studio for a new album, it's just naturally going to be
different because time has passed. As you go on with your life and
have different experiences you can't help but indulge them when you're
singing. They are a part of you."
Tucker has also put her life experiences down on
paper, in her autobiography, "Nickel
Dreams" (Hyperion). Working with
writer Patsi Bale Cox, Tanya has produced a book that takes an
uncompromising, honest look at her life.
Tanya Tucker has plenty to write about. She decided at age
six that she would sing, and told her father so. "I wasn't forced
to do anything," she says. "My dad and I have always had an
understanding. If I wanted something, whatever it was, he'd say 'well
let's see what we can do.' He would never say 'No, that's impossible.'
He would make it happen as long as I did my part."
Her part in starting a singing career meant
traipsing through Nashville with her father Beau, trying to get
someone in the music business to listen to her. Before she even hit
her teens, Tucker would belt out songs for industry big shots and hear
cold-hearted assessments of her talent spat right in her face.
Perseverance paid off, and at age 13, Tucker's
rendition of "Delta Dawn" made her a star. In 1976, at age
15, she had her first greatest hits collection, a Grammy nomination
and a Rolling Stone cover with the headline, "I-E, I'm
Tanya Tucker, I'm 15, You're Gonna Hear From Me." The headline
was prophetic. Unlike so many teen sensations, Tucker stuck with
singing and continued to chalk up hits.
Tanya Tucker signed with Capitol Nashville in 1985, and
immediately made the top of the charts with "One Love At A
Time... Just Another Love" and "I'll Come Back As Another
Woman." With each album, she reinforced her status as one of
country music's premier stylists. In 1991, four songs from her
platinum-selling "What Do I Do With Me" became huge hits,
including the Grammy-nominated "Down To My Last Teardrop."
She won Female Vocalist of the Year honors at the 1991 Country Music
Association Awards Show, but was unable to accept because she was in
the hospital after giving birth to her son Beau Grayson. Her next
album, "Can't Run From Yourself," also went platinum, and
her video for "Two Sparrows In A Hurricane" won an Academy
of Country Music Award in 1994.
She is the youngest woman in pop or country history
to have a boxed set of her music available to the public.
In addition to her own albums, Tanya Tucker has
contributed her talents to a number of tribute projects in the last
few years. She is constantly in demand for guest appearances: She
performed at the World Cup Opening Ceremonies in 1994 (to a worldwide
television audience of two billion viewers), did the half-time show at
the Super Bowl in that same year and in 1996, and CBS chose her to sing
the theme song for their NASCAR racing broadcast.
"I really don't think of myself as a
star," she says. "I'm just a working mom. Still, things
happen that amaze me sometimes. I went to Norway on tour, and I've
never seen people act the way they did. It was like The Beatles or
Elvis was on stage. There were 30,000 people screaming and crowding to
the front of the stage. People were passing out. I counted 20 to 25
people being carried out. It was so strange. We had to stop the show
to calm the crowd down."