ItsNotYouItsMe Blog: The Beautifully Legendary Songstress Linda Ronstadt Spills The Tea In Revealing ‘CBS Sunday Morning’ Interview

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

The Beautifully Legendary Songstress Linda Ronstadt Spills The Tea In Revealing ‘CBS Sunday Morning’ Interview

The Beautifully legendary songstress Linda Ronstadt spills the tea in a very extremely revealing and quite endearing ‘CBS Sunday Morning’ Interview. Thee riveting profile once again reminds us of how truly astounding and vivrant and genuinely one of a kind talent Miss Ronstadt is! The following is a brassy and honest open conversation with the one and only veracious...

"In a touching, funny and inspirational conversation with CBS Sunday Morning’s Tracy Smith, Linda Ronstadt opened up about her battle with Parkinson’s, the disease that robbed fans of Ronstadt’s remarkable singing voice.

From the classic rock hits “(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave” and “You’re No Good,” to the acoustic country of “Telling Me Lies” and “To Know Him Is to Love Him,” performed with her Trio partners Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris, Ronstadt’s range as an interpreter and vocal powerhouse earned her membership in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.

Now 72, with streaks of purple in her light brown hair, Ronstadt revealed that although she can no longer physically sing the songs for which she is well-known, she does have one way to hear herself perform them (it’s not on her million-selling records — she never listens to those).

“I can sing in my brain,” she says. “I sing in my brain all the time. It’s not quite the same as doing it physically. There’s a physical feeling in singing that’s just like skiing down a hill. Except better, because I’m not a very good skier.”

Although Ronstadt’s humor shines through in the interview, there’s also the poignant revelation that by 2009 she retired from singing because, by that time, what she heard herself doing mostly onstage was “yelling” as her voice faltered.

These days, Ronstadt spends much of her time at home reading, a pursuit that has deepened her interest in political affairs. In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Ronstadt endorsed Michael Lewis’ bestseller The Fifth Risk. “It’s a great little civics lesson, to start with. It’s a real education in how the Cabinet works and what happens when it does its function, which it’s not doing now,” she said. “The ‘fifth risk’ is incompetence. For instance, the Secretary of Energy was a nuclear scientist, and Trump put in somebody who wasn’t even interested in the reports they prepared to hand over to the new administration. They didn’t even come in for a briefing. The Department of Energy, which I didn’t know before, takes care of all the nuclear weapons. Our nuclear arsenal is in the hands of the Department of Energy.”

Ronstadt’s first-ever live album, Live in Hollywood, taped for a 1980 HBO special, was issued last week. The LP collects 12 of the 20 songs performed in the special, many of which have been unreleased in any form until now.

Another story continues on via our comrades over at Billboard....

"It doesn't bother Linda Ronstadt that it's taken this long into her Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-lauded career to release a live album.

"It always seemed to me the best place you can record is in the studio so you can fix things if you make a mistake," Ronstadt, who's been sidelined from singing by Parkinson's disease, tells Billboard about the just-released Live in Hollywood, a 13-track set from an April 1980 performance at Television Center Studios in Hollywood for HBO. She was backed by a crack band that included Danny Kortchmar and Kenny Edwards on guitar, Bob Glaub on bass, Little Feat's Bill Payne on keyboards, Dan Dugmore on pedal steel, Wendy Waldman on backing vocals and Ronstadt producer and concert executive producer Peter Asher on percussion and backing vocals. Ronstadt recalls that the concert "was insufferably hot. It was a small studio and we had an audience, so it heated the room up quite a lot. And then they had really hot, really big lights on us.

"It's something that should've been considered, but we were brave little soldiers and pushed through it. But it was really too hot to make music."

Ronstadt herself "didn't know that this recording existed" until longtime producer John Boylan discovered the master tape last year. And even now she has ambivalent emotions about Live in Hollywood seeing the light of day.

"It was recorded for television, which is unfortunate because television compresses things so much," she explains. "So it didn't turn out to be a really hi-fi record. It turned out to be a television record." Ronstadt adds that she "just kind of smiled through it" when she heard the tapes. "I don't like to listen to stuff I've recorded," she says. "It's just another time, and it's a frozen in time kind of thing. I always think, 'Why did I sing that note like that? Why did I phrase it like that? Why wasn't it faster? Why wasn't it slower?' I always see things I would've corrected in the studio, so (listening to the recordings) is a fool's errand for me."

For fans, Live in Hollywood does capture Ronstadt at the end of the first phase of her pop music career. Shortly after the concert and her then-current Mad Love album, Ronstadt pivoted to the theater stage for an appearance in Gilbert and Sullivan's operetta The Pirates of Penzance, eventually hitting Broadway, and shortly after that moved on to albums of pop standards and then indigenous Mexican music. "I was looking for something new to do," Ronstadt recalls. "I liked pop music, but I had a lot of album-tour, album-tour, album-tour. I enjoyed making those records, but I was sort of done with it at that point. I was really excited about the idea of going to Broadway and singing operetta... and it was a long time before I came back to pop music with any enthusiasm."

Ronstadt isn't sure what else her vaults may yield in the future, either. "I'm away from the machinations of the record company dealings, so I don't know," she says. "They unearth stuff I don't even remember doing. I always shudder when I think about them bringing something out of the vault because it's something we rejected for some good reason back then. I don't have a lot of say in it, really."

Ronstadt, who performed her last concert during 2009 after noticing she was having problems with her voice, was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 2013 and now cannot sing at all -- not even in the shower, she recently told CBS Sunday Morning. "I'm not afraid of dying. I'm afraid of suffering," Ronstadt told the show. She said she's learned to accept help from other people, and she busies herself now with watching operatic performances on YouTube and working with the Los Cenzontles Mexican Arts Center in San Pablo, Calif., which helps teach Latin American youth about their culture; She'll be leading a trip to Mexico with the group later this month.

Ronstadt is also working with two others on a writing project about the Sonoran Desert, which straddles the U.S.-Mexico border in the southwest.

"These (projects) tend to come up naturally and in sort of an organic fashion. I don't go looking for them," Ronstadt says, adding that she tries not to bemoan the loss of her music career. "It just seems so long ago, it was another person," she notes. "I don't have the same life now. I tried my best. I like to think that I gave it an earnest shot but, y'know, you can never be completely satisfied. It's always what would you do the next time -- you can improve this, you can improve that. But I can't create new (music) anymore, so I think about other things. And to be honest I have more home life now, and I like that better."" -

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