100 Ways to Beat the Blues

100 Ways to Beat the Blues

by Tanya Tucker


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How do you beat the blues?

We all have moments in life when we're down, lonely, or just plain sad. It's part of being human. Just as everyone is different, everyone has a unique way of beating the blues.

For anyone who needs a bit of inspiration, a smile, or a friendly pat on the back, Tanya Tucker and ninety-nine friends offer this heartwarming collection of their personal recipes for beating the blues. President George H.W. Bush yells at the television. Loretta Lynn makes herself a fried bologna sandwich. Sir Arthur C. Clarke explores the infinite universe of fractals. NASCAR's Geoff Bodine cleans the house. Seventy celebrities such as Kris Kristofferson, Wynonna Judd, and Garth Brooks and thirty ordinary folks such as a farmer, a private detective, a doctor, and a retired gospel radio-show host share what lifts their spirits and remind us of all the joy life has to offer.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780743282857
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication date: 03/07/2006
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Tanya Tucker was born in Seminole, Texas, and achieved international fame at the age of thirteen when her first single, "Delta Dawn," soared to the top of the charts. Considered to be one of the great song stylists, she has become one of music's most beloved icons. Her recording catalog includes more than a hundred solo and compilation albums; she has been honored with the highest awards country music can offer and has received numerous awards for her work outside music. When she is not on tour she is at her Tennessee farm with her three children: Presley, Grayson, and Layla, as well as assorted dogs, cats, and horses.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: The Two-Hour Blues

Tanya Tucker

Any entertainer will tell you that when you get on that tour bus, you sometimes feel you are leaving the problems of the real world behind. You're out there on the road where problems with the plumbing at your house, or the lawn that needs mowing, or the important call you haven't returned are miles away. They'll usually be waiting for you upon your return, but still, it's out of sight, out of mind. But the one thing you can't outrun on the road is the blues. The blues travel fast. They'll catch up.

Getting up onstage and feeling the love of your fans goes a long ways toward holding the blues at bay out there on the road. So does getting a call from an old friend, listening to the radio and hearing a great song, or discovering a new artist whose music you love. The sound of rain on the bus's roof always cheers me up. Sometimes, if it's raining when I come in off the road, I linger on the bus a little longer — not to stay out of the rain, just to hear that pitter-patter sound on the roof.

But other times you have to reach down inside yourself and really come up with a powerful solution to the blues. In my case, inspiration comes from my family. My children, of course, always bring me up. A hug, a smile, an "I love you, Mom." And then, I can always look to my parents, to their lives and strengths.

Mother and Daddy came up poor and proud, and raised me to believe in myself, no matter how bad things looked. In the late 1930s, my mother's family, the Cunninghams, moved from Abilene, Texas, to work on a ranch near the New Mexico border, in Gains County, Texas. They worked with the horses and cattle, picked cotton, and tended to the watermelon patches. Then the ranch owners struck oil, and, like so many other Texans, Mother's family started working in the oil fields. It was there that Mother met my father, Beau Tucker. In 1943, the two married. Mother was fifteen years old, but from that day on, she was Daddy's support system. She packed up and moved with him as he chased work all over the Southwest.

When I was nine years old, we drove up to St. George, Utah, where Daddy had heard of jobs in construction. The jobs were there, but it was an unstable, on-again, off-again industry. At one point we were about as poor as a family could get, living in a beat-up trailer and eating government cheese. Then Daddy lost his job, Mama got sick, and we fell a hundred and fifty dollars behind on our rent. One morning Daddy cranked up his old Ford truck and went out to look for work while I stayed home from school to take care of Mama. All of a sudden, there was a knock on the door. I answered it, and two big men in suits burst into the living room and started yelling at Mama about the rent. She tried to explain that Daddy was on the verge of getting another job, but they weren't in a mood to listen. They were in a mood to kick us out.

I yelled and cried, but those men dragged Mama outside, sat her down on the curb, and padlocked the doors to that beat-up trailer. She and I stayed huddled together for two hours before Daddy got home. As it happened, he had found a job, and was able to get a small advance. He rented us a furnished room, and we had a roof over our heads again.

But for two hours I had been as lowdown as I have ever been in my life. I will always remember that feeling, knowing that for the want of a hundred and fifty dollars strangers could leave my mother in her housecoat, sick and coughing, by the side of the road and I couldn't do a damn thing about it.

I started singing professionally that same year. Four years later, at the age of thirteen, I had my first hit record. My family has never wanted for anything since. So when I get the blues over some real or imagined problem, I picture Mama on the curb in St. George, Utah. And that's when my spirits soar in the knowledge that it will never happen again.

So my advice is this: If you've got the blues, look back over your life. Think about other hard times and how you overcame them. Then give yourself a pat on the back.

I promise you'll feel better.

Copyright © 2005 by Tanya Tucker

Table of Contents


1. The Two-Hour Blues Tanya Tucker

2. The Wrong Motorcycle Blues Roseanne

3. Perking Up the Blues Myrtle Todd

4. Sweeping Away the Blues Geoff Bodine

5. How We Beat the Blues George and Barbara Bush

6. The Finite Blues Sir Arthur C. Clarke

7. On the Road Blues James Gregory

8. An Alternative to the Blues Willie Nelson

9. The Walter Mitty Blues Robert Timmerman

10. The Faces of the Blues Gayle Sayers

11. The Backseat Blues Wesley McNair

12. The Late-Night Blues Loretta Lynn

13. The Broken Heart Blues Ian Duncan

14. Two Words for the Blues Eric Burdon

15. The Army Blues James Gordon Bennett

16. The Front Porch Blues Rodney Ammons

17. The Blues and Richard Harris Eva Juel

18. Giving Away the Blues Morgan Fairchild

19. The Waylon Blues Wendy Rodrigue

20. The Helping Hand Blues Brenda Lee

21. The Dark Side Blues David Prowse

22. Rolling Over the Blues Pat Schroeder

23. Laughter and the Blues Burt Reynolds

24. Blues of the Heart Daniel Wolff

25. The Good Medicine Blues George Stevens Jr.

26. The Positive Side of the Blues Gene Pitney

27. Quinnie's Blues Dinah Johnson

28. The One-Time Blues Rita Coolidge

29. Shane Beats the Blues Tim Sandlin

30. Friends Can Beat the Blues Dr. Michael Obenski

31. Beating the Blues Daily Garth Brooks

32. The Cinematic Blues Dan Lauria

33. How Farmers Beat the Blues Dave Stapleton

34. The Insignificant Blues Joan Jett

35. The Blues and the Fiddle Doug Kershaw

36. The Jurassic Blues Tom Rymour

37. The Jack Daniel's Blues Paul Sylbert

38. The Warm Weather Blues "Weird Al" Yankovic

39. Swinging Away the Blues Jean Atwood

40. The High Altitude Blues Andrew Stevenson

41. The Duet Blues Chad & Jeremy

42. Hugging Away the Blues Gretchen Wilson

43. When Friendly Angels Get the Blues Terri Derington

44. Around the Farm Blues George Jones

45. How to Dodge the Blues Terry Kay

46. Planting the Blues Phil Richardson

47. Country Music Beats the Blues Jerry Orbach

48. Three Steps Ahead of the Blues Donna Fargo

49. The Food Blues Dr. Joyce Brothers

50. The Starting Over Blues Kristina Copkov

51. Organizing the Blues Wynonna Judd

52. How to Beat the Blues in L.A. Stephanie Germain

53. The Mystery of the Blues Thomas Patrick Straw

54. The Creative Blues Tommy James

55. The Broken-Down Bus Blues Gerald Williams

56. Cooking Up the Blues Ty Herndon

57. The Espionage Blues Sherry Sullivan

58. The Healing Blues Jesse Colin Young

59. Jade's Message for the Blues Helen Vroon

60. How Horses Lick the Blues Lynn Anderson

61. Partying Away the Blues Troy Body

62. The Polka Blues Cure Steve Popovich

63. The Other Side of the Blues Judy Henske

64. Riding Out the Blues Nicole McBreairty

65. Dousing the Blues Bobby Braddock

66. The Night Jimmy Smith Lit Up the Blues Porter Fox

67. The Creepy Blues Taylor Dayne

68. The Writing Blues Jeffrey A. Carver

69. The Rainy Blues Delbert McClinton

70. The Sheltering Blues Laura Gilpin

71. The Starry Night Blues John Lappen

72. The Vietnam Blues Shad Meshad

73. Honky-tonk, Muzik, and the Blues Big & Rich

74. The Yorkshire Blues Chris Simpson

75. The Lawn Mower Blues Little Richard

76. The Map-Crease Blues David Logan

77. The Unbeatable Blues Kris Kristofferson

78. Dissecting the Blues Paul Gahlinger

79. The Friendly Blues Billy Bob Thornton

80. Fly-Fishing Through the Blues Macye Lavinder Maher

81. Outriding/Outplaying the Blues Bret Michaels

82. The Ageless Blues Patsi Bale Cox

83. The Texas Hold 'Em Blues Daniel Negreanu

84. The Sunday Blues Cathie Pelletier

85. Outjumping the Blues Charles Barkley

86. The Swamp Blues Carl Hileman

87. Blues for Sale Robert Westwood

88. The Blues Is the Blues Jerry Lee Lewis

89. The Unemployed Blues Jay Heckman

90. The Sidecar Blues Wally Lamb

91. The Scam Letter Blues Brad Christensen

92. The Boring Blues Kinky Friedman

93. The Four-Legged Rescue Blues Nancy Parker Simons

94. The Positive Blues Rocky Blier

95. Aldo and the Blues Hal Kant

96. Burning Down the Blues Blake Shelton

97. The Blue Heaven Blues José Eber

98. Escaping the Blues Ray "Boom Boom" MancinI

99. The Corner of Joy and Peace Blues Tammy Faye Messner

100. The Tucker Children Beat the Blues

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