1) What role did you play on the soap operas? I watched them once in a blue moon when I got a day off work but I never saw you. And where do you get all that energy? Do you have some special foods you are keeping secret?
I played the role of Bill Anderson, country singer, on the soaps. Wasn’t that a stretch? And, no, I don’t have some secret foods that give me energy. I do try to eat healthy, though, and I try to get eight hours sleep as often as I can. I try to exercise every day possible, and I laugh every chance I get. My work is something I enjoy, and combined with all the above, the love of my friends, fans, and family gives me all the energy I need.
2) I have two-part question: Who are the background singers on “Mama Sang A Song” and what inspired you to write such a tear jerker?
The vocal group was the Anita Kerr Singers, and Miss Anita’s is the beautiful, angelic voice that is predominately featured. I wrote the song because my mother inspired me so much as a youngster by singing the old hymns and gospel songs around the house. I didn’t mean for it to be a tear-jerker. I intended it as a tribute to a lady who brightened my world by singing from her heart.
3) You don’t ever mention Mary Lou Turner. How is she? Her children must be grown now with children and maybe even grandchildren of their own.
I don’t see Mary Lou very often, but your question inspired me to give her a call. She had just returned from a cruise with some of her label mates from Heart Of Texas records. She has a new record out called “Sentimental Music Journey,” she sings every other Sunday at the Cowboy Church in Branson, where she continues to live, and refers to herself as “semi-retired.” Her daughter, Leslie, is working as an RN in Rogers, Arkansas, and her son, Tommy, just retired after 22-years in the Navy. They both have children. Her husband, David, plays piano in and around Branson, playing dinner music at the Chateau on Saturday nights. She sounds happy, and I look forward to seeing her in October when I’m in Branson.
4) The only album Barbara Eden ever recorded was re-released on CD and colored vinyl in February. Your song, “I Get The Fever,” is included. Do you still get royalties on re-releases such as these?
I’m supposed to, but ask me again in about a year. I’ll let you know then whether I did or not.
5) How long did you live in Columbia, S.C.? My grandmother swore that she taught you at Taylor Grammar School on Laurel Street.
I lived in Columbia until shortly after my 8th birthday. I went to Schneider Elementary School in the Shandon area, though, so I’m afraid your grandmother was not one of my teachers. Sorry.
Thanks for some great questions this month. See if you can send me some more for April. My address is email@example.com or P.O. Box 888, Hermitage, TN. 37076. Stay curious.