Mandrell performing in a USO show in 1986
|Born||Barbara Ann Mandrell
December 25, 1948
Houston, Texas, U.S.
|Other names||The Sweetheart of Steel|
|Spouse(s)||Ken Dudney (m. 1967)|
|Genres||Country, country pop|
|Instruments||Vocals, pedal steel guitar, banjo, accordion, saxophone|
|Labels||Columbia, ABC/Dot, MCA, Capitol|
|Associated acts||George Jones, David Houston, Louise Mandrell, Irlene Mandrell, Lee Greenwood|
I'd love to be in a feature film, and I don't just mean in a starring role – it could be a small part. And I would like to act in television, to do comedy and drama.
I've always been one for show business. I like performing, and I used to get criticized for having production value. But now it's all that! People need to get what they pay for! Otherwise, just listen to recorded music.
I'm a very competitive person, and I always competed with myself. Every year, I'd take six weeks with my band, crew and choreographer to put a new show together. We'd spend eight hours per day, seven days per week putting a show together to beat the last year's show.
I just like doing silly girly things. If I wrap a gift, I like to use specials ribbon and hot glue, silk flowers and things.
When I had my television show, 'Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters,' it was my high hope to convert people to country music. It is wonderful and contagious!
I'm no intellect. I'm no preacher. I'm an entertainer. And If I don't get up there and entertain people, I'm not giving them what they paid for.
I don't know what the future holds, but I know that God holds tomorrow, so it is exciting. Even when I have hard things happen, He loves me so big, so much. I come through it and I grow from it, because He has got me.
I've been told by a lot of people after concerts that they felt the show was just for them. And I try to make it that way.
There will come a time when the public will tire of me and let me know it. That's when I retire. But so far, I've continued to grow. I keep pushing myself to improve.
In my garden, which is a big garden, I have one part that is my bird garden, and every morning, 365 days a year, they get buckets of food – for the birds, for the squirrels, the chipmunks and the turtles in the summer.
What I do miss that I don't get anymore? You're going to think I'm crazy, but you want the truth, so here it is. The lights! I miss the spotlights. I don't mean it figuratively. I mean it literally. I love the feeling of lights.
For the next approximately three years, I have got Nathan to take care of. I know that once he graduates from high school, he will be off doing whatever it is he is going to be doing – probably playing ice hockey.
I have lots of favorite shows, but not reality! I don't like reality TV so much. I'm saddened by people who don't show respect to each other and to themselves. It's horrible. Unfortunately, that's demonstrated a lot on reality television.
We're only here to love God and each other. I'm not saying I've never gotten angry at anyone. I do. But you've got to forgive and move on.
It's an exciting life. I don't know where God is leading us. I just know that He opens doors and He closes the doors, and it is always the best for us.
That's what I loved about show business, no two days were alike. It's an exciting life.
The greatest gift God has given me is the capacity of love for people. I have so many faults, but caring about people is not one of them.
I am not saying that I'm happy about what's going on right now in our nation, but I am at peace and I am comforted because I know that He's on the throne. That is good enough for me.
It seems to me that unless you or someone very close to you has had a bad head injury, you really can't fathom it. You have no concept of what it is all about. It was so difficult for my whole family, not just me.
We had to go all through the night thinking that our baby was dead. When God showed him to us, he wasn't dead, he was sucking his thumb. God had him safe and sound. He is a miracle. He is so healthy, so perfect, and God has really, really blessed us.
And they just saw me on that and – from the time I was 11 until I was 12, I guess. And then when I had just turned 13, they asked me if I wanted to tour with Johnny Cash back East.
Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette, Dolly Parton and I were the first female headliners, where we would book our own opening acts. Before that, it was a standing joke that it was more like we had 'pretty little girl singers' opening for a male headliner.
You won't see me at a microphone singing and tapping my foot. I spend a lot of money on sets, costumes and sound. I believe people deserve a show. I'm a singer, musician, dancer. I work hard, and I'm soaking wet when I come off.
I learned mainly through television, but I learned how to do mosaic, where you can buy stones or things of that nature. But also where you bust the tile to decorate pots for flowers or table tops. Lots of different things. Wherever you want it, you can mosaic just about anything. It took me about two weeks to do a big birdbath.
By our Heavenly Father and only because of God, only because of God. We're like other couples. We do not get along perfectly; we do not go without arguments and, as I call them, fights, and heartache and pain and hurting each other. But a marriage is three of us.
I realize we're not promised tomorrow. Believe me, I realize that. But if God blesses me and lets me stay, I love my life so much, it is such a good life. I am eager to throw myself at His feet, but I don't want to get on the first busload that is going.
That is the exciting thing: I don't know what God has given me for tomorrow.