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Animals have a much better attitude to life and death than we do. They know when their time has come. We are the ones that suffer when they pass, but it's a healing kind of grief that enables us to deal with other griefs that are not so easy to grab hold of.
As anyone who goes into dog-rescue knows, it is not a for-profit business, but the rewards are priceless for me.
As citizens we have to be more thoughtful and more educated and more informed. I turn on the TV and I see these grown people screaming at each other, and I think, well, if we don't get our civility back, we're in trouble.
Country taught me how to sing, it put me on a path. But I was never going to be locked into a formula. I don't want to be considered a current country artist.
I don't ever worry about whether I'm being true to my country roots. My country roots were adopted. I never worry about what I can do and what I should do. I just do what I want to do.
I have just enough people paying attention that I have the freedom to be in charge. And I have a great record company - Nonesuch understands what I'm about.
I was a folk singer who became totally over the edge with country music. I found my voice and style working with Gram Parsons. I learned how to listen to George Jones records and the Louvin Brothers.
I'm blessed to be able to work at something that I'm good at, and that I love. It's not something I take for granted.
I'm even able to have kind of a little bit of a second career in dog rescue. Doesn't pay anything, but it's become a real passion for me.
I'm not a trained musician. When folks talk about 'Well, you go to this or that' - the tenor, or the third part - I don't really know what they're talking about.
In 1974 I was trying to get my first little band together. That year marked kind of a traumatic point in my life, but I had a lot of support from friends and family and a lot of good things ended up coming out of it.
The only time I ever appeared in the 'Enquirer' was for a piece about people who let their hair grow gray. I guess I'm not much of a wild child.
There's a certain grace in accepting what your life is and embracing all the good things that have been - but there's still an expectation of good things to come. Not necessarily what you expected.
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