She’s been called country music’s wild child, the Texas tornado, country outlaw, Grammy winner, and, most recently, Country Music Hall of Fame inductee.
She’s played honky tonks, dive bars, arenas, the Fort Bend County Fair, Carnegie Hall, the Grand Old Opry, the Astrodome, and Super Bowl halftime shows. She has won major music awards in the ’70s, ’90s, and ’20s and had a #1 song in every decade since the ’70s, except for the 2010s.
She is Tanya Tucker and last year she celebrated 50 years in the music industry which began with her first single, “Delta Dawn”, in 1972. She was 13. She is back on tour promoting her 26th studio album, Sweet Country Sounds. Tucker is making a stop at the Heights Theatre for two shows on June 27 and 28.
She was scheduled to make a stop at the Heights in 2020, but Covid forced the cancellation of that tour.
Tanya Mother Tucker, as some of her T-shirts read, has a sizeable LGBTQ following. Her independence, doing it my way and I don’t care what others think, being through the fire, and surviving persona, have endeared her to a community constantly under attack.
Tucker has been a judge on RuPaul’s Drag Race, recorded singles with RuPaul (“This is My Country”) and Leslie Jordan (“When the Roll is Called Up Yonder”), and was the headline performer at Nashville Pride in 2022 where she brought local drag queens on stage with her as backup singers and dancers.
“Sweet Western Sound is another revelation and I’m excited to see what folks think of our new endeavor. It’s ALWAYS a trip working with Brandi Carlile and Shooter Jennings. I didn’t know if we’d be working together again on a new album after While I’m Livin’!! But we did it! Lots of new things we did this time, and I even co-wrote some of the songs, which means a lot to me. Brandi says we’re MAGIC together, and I’m starting to believe her!!!!,” says Tucker.
Excerpts from the bio released for the new album tell a story of a woman who didn’t always take the easy route to fame and fortune. “Only Tanya Tucker can claim a resume like that: one long on living, not judging, creating, not looking back. When 2019’s acclaimed While I’m Livin’ won the GRAMMY for Best Country Album, and its poignant single “Bring My Flowers Now,” not only won Best Country Song but was also nominated in the all-genre Song of the Year category. It was a powerful statement about authenticity, about staying power, and about greatness. But that doesn’t always make the follow-up any easier.”
Tanya Tucker has seen, done, and been places most people can’t imagine and she’s done it at a pace that would kill mere mortals. A child thrust into stardom with a series of precocious hits, the iconic “Delta Dawn,” “Would You Lay With Me,” and “Blood Red & Goin’ Down,” among them, she then released a pair of wild and brash rock records at 18, then returned to country music in her 20s to ultimately take the CMA Female Vocalist of the Year Award in 1991.
“And that approach to living is what makes her new album, Sweet Western Sound such a tour du force,” reads the preview of the new album. “Building on her collaboration with Brandi Carlile and Shooter Jennings (who co-produced Livin’), they dug deeper into the caverns and canyons of Tanya’s life. This time the music is bigger and more immediate, the reckonings more profound; but as always, the heart is strong, honest, and willing to tell the truth about it all.”
Speaking as a lifelong fan who has seen the never-married mother of three in concert at the Astrodome, Astroworld, Mo’s Place in Katy, Stampede Houston, Lake Charles, and Miller Outdoor Theatre, she never fails to totally entertain her audience. After all, she’s been doing it for over fifty years and seems as comfortable on stage as the Little Mermaid in water, especially if she is sipping on Cosa Salvaje, her name-branded tequila.