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  • Writer's pictureMike Conway

Tanya Tucker, Brown County Music Center, 9/19/19

I was feeling some nostalgia for the wonderful Little Nashville Opry when I bought tickets to see Tanya Tucker in Brown County. The Opry, which burned down ten years ago, brought in all the old country stars whom the radio stations had forgotten. At the time I got the tickets, I had no idea what an amazing story brought Tanya to Nashville, IN or even anything about the venue where she's be playing. All I knew was she was on the radio starting in my teenage years and I don't remember ever seeing her live in concert.

After buying the tickets, I started reading about how Shooting Jennings and Brandi Carlile got Tanya back in a recording studio for the first time in a long time. The new project, "While I'm Livin'," is a wonderful album, reminiscent of the work Rick Rubin did with Johnny Cash or Glen Campbell's last album, "Ghost on the Canvas."

Tanya's show at the Brown County Music Center is one I'll never forget. She had a great band backing her up and she did a smattering of the big hits she had over the decades. But when she got personal about her life and this new chapter in her career, you could feel how much she puts into the songs. In turns, she was funny, serious, sad, and even seemed a bit overwhelmed by everything going on now.

She brought down the house with a song she said she had been working on for decades and could never finish. She took her idea to the recording session and she and Brandi Carlile finished the song, "Bring My Flowers Now," and put it on the album, the song also providing the title of the album. With just a keyboard and her voice, Tanya brought that very personal song to life, with the crowd on its feet cheering at the end. Of course she ended the show with a bit of Amazing Grace that transitioned into her first, and most memorable hit, "Delta Dawn."

Tanya Tucker also proved she is a bona fide old-school country star with her crowd interactions. When one fan brought her up a gift bag, she first put it aside, then said she had to look to see what was inside. She proceeded to sit down to put on the earrings that the fan had brought her. At the end of the show, she spent more than a half hour meeting her fans from the stage while the band kept playing. My knees hurt just watching how many times she leaned down, crouched, or even laid on the stage so people could get their selfies or have an album or shirt signed.

The new Brown County Music Center in Nashville, IN is a great place to see a show. Looking forward to more music at this new venue.

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