"A r t i s t   C o n n e c t i o n "
"Tanya Tucker"
"The Original Delta Dawn Girl"
Born in Texas in 1958, "Tanya Tucker" inherited a love of country
music from her parents, particularly her dad, Beau.  When Tanya
became a budding singer at a young age, Beau was determined to
land her a recording contract.
Dad kept pitching Tanya's tapes from the family's new home in
Las Vegas, finally catching the ear of Nashville producer Billy
Sherrill, who signed Tanya to a contract when she was only 13.
The first song he gave her was "Delta Dawn," the moving story
of a depressed woman.
"I didn't really understand what the song was about.  I knew some
lady had gone crazy and was wandering the streets wearing an old,
faded flower.  But the concept of losing a lover and going insane
over it was beyond me.  I liked the words and the musical feel of
the song, though."
At her first recording session for "Delta Dawn,"
March 17, 1972, Tanya introduced herself to her all-star studio
band by announcing, "I know my part, boys!  
Do you know yours?"
That year, "Delta Dawn" landed in the Top 10, and by 1973
Tanya had her first No. 1 with "What's your Mama's Name."
Soon everyone would know 'her' name.  She went on to add
nine more No. 1's to her list, and in 1991, the Country Music
Association named her Female Vocalist of the Year.

"I have 'Bette Midler' to thank for the song that
became my first hit record, because Billy Sherrill
happened to be watching Johnny Carson one night
and heard her sing "Delta Dawn."  Billy had never 
heard of Bette Midler before, but he loved her voice 
and wanted to sign her to a recording contract.  He 
called Al Gallico in New York and asked him to 
track her down.  Bette had just signed with Jerry 
Wexler at Atlantic Records, and when Al called 
Billy back and told him so, Billy said, "Well, let's 
find that song, 'Delta Dawn,' and I'll cut it on 
that little girl from Nevada."


"Delta Dawn" is the song I most often close my show with, and it is still
one of the most requested.  I'll go to my grave thanking whatever angel got
Billy to tune to the Johnny Carson show that night.  It made me a star 
back then, but it made me the proudest a few years ago.  I was playing a
show in Texas and received a note that there was a little girl with Down's
syndrome in the audience who wanted to come backstage.  When she and
her parents got there, her dad told me that until she was eight years old she
never spoke.  They bought one of my tapes and were playing it around the
house, and one day, the little girl stood in the middle of the room and
began to sing "Delta Dawn."  And she has spoken ever since.  I teared up,
it was such a miracle.  It also reminded me that music can be a
powerful thing.


Bette Midler's version of the hit song, "Delta Dawn" has always
been a favorite!  Her recording can be found on 
"The Divine Miss M" and "Live at Last."








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