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Home #Hwoodtimes Interview with Country Music Songwriter, Singer & Musician Suzi Ragsdale

Interview with Country Music Songwriter, Singer & Musician Suzi Ragsdale

By  Judy Shields

Rancho Cucamonga, California (The Hollywood Times) – 09/29/2020 – “It was fun filming the video here at my place with the creek that runs through it and having my English bulldog “Tex” in it was special to me,” Suzi Ragsdale told The Hollywood Times during a Zoom interview.

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Check out the YouTube video here: [NOTE: I do apologize to Suzi and you the viewers, that the video quality is somewhat off, but her voice comes through quite well]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbCjifbyiNo

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Suzi Ragsdale’s New Release Ghost Town Arrives October 9th – Veteran Nashville singer-songwriter’s first in 10 years; “Wildflowers” video out NOW

Nashville, TN – If there were resumés for musicians, Suzi Ragsdale ’s would certainly end up on the top of the stack. After taking part in her first recording session while in kindergarten, Ragsdale has been on a wild ride through the music industry where she’s written songs for the likes of Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert , sang background on recordings for everyone from Loretta Lynn to Hank Williams Jr., and toured as a member in the bands of iconic songwriters Guy Clark and Darrell Scott; and that’s not even mentioning Ragsdale’s own albums she’s released since her two duet records with Verlon Thompson in 1993 and 1995.

Now, in 2020, it’s been a decade since Ragsdale has released her own music, but that only magnifies the refreshing and reassuring wisdom, compassion, and humor of her new EP, Ghost Town. Out everywhere on October 9th, Ghost Town is delivered in a wild-honey-coated voice that echoes Ragsdale’s Southern roots; an all-encompassing expression of the mind-body-spirit connection that speaks right to the heart.

American Songwriter premiered Ghost Town’s first single, “Wildflowers,” celebrating the “…percolating percussion, wistful slide guitar, and silky vocals” as “effortless.” Watch the “Wildflowers” video here and pre-order Ghost Town here .

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Suzi Ragsdale performing with her father Ray Stevens

Produced by Ragsdale’s long-time collaborator, Sam Frank, and in part by her father, the legendary songwriter Ray Stevens, Ghost Town kicks off with the rollicking and infectious “Bonfire,” an ode to decluttering and simplifying both the mind and the home, which ends with a celebratory dance around the flickering pyre. On the EP’s affecting title track, lingering memories of “fairytales, fantasies, and lies” haunt the present. Throughout the instantly memorable “Loved and Won,” Ragsdale recites a litany of famous couples, both real and fictional—“Johnny and June, Scarlett and Rhett, Yoko and John, Romeo and Juliet” in the opening verse—and turns the oft-heard “it’s better to have loved and lost” on its ear. The percussive and thoroughly uplifting “Live Until You Die” assures us in its opening line that even the daily rigors of “Eat, drink, sleep, wash, rinse, repeat” are preferable to the alternative.

“Though not intentionally written to be so, this group of songs has a common thread of transformation—of accepting what’s out of our control, but without resignation,” says Ragsdale. “Instead, rising from the proverbial ashes with perseverance and strength, humor, and grace.”

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Ghost Town closes, appropriately enough, with “The Ending,” a candidly poignant track in which she muses that when it comes to spoilers, whether they reveal the last chapter of a book or the inevitable dissolution of a marriage, ignorance of the outcome might prove the more blissful option. Driven by a swirling, heart-piercing melody, it is a prime example of the mind-body-spirit connection found in Suzi Ragsdale’s inspiring and memorable work.

“I want it to make me feel something,” she says of her goal with each new composition. “If I get enough time away from it and then let it surprise me again, to give me goosebumps and make me cry happy tears with the pleasure of having done it, that’s what I’m going for. If I’m going to ask other people to spend their time listening to me I want it to be good enough to do that.”

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Ghost Town Tracklist:

Bonfire
Ghost Town
Loved and Won
Live Until You Die
Wildflowers
The Ending

REVIEW

Suzi has an amazing voice, that reaches into your soul, spirit and heart.  I hear a hint of K.D. Lang, Loretta Lynn and Gretchen Wilson.  You don’t want to miss the opportunity to get your hands on her upcoming EP Ghost Town. It will be out in time for your holiday shopping.  Get a copy for yourself and one for your music-loving friends and family.  Support all songwriters by purchasing the actual CD! You can burn it to your listening devices or just enjoy it on the CD player as it was intended for.

Songwriters are the ones who give you the words that bring memories, inspiration and even tears.  These songs, combined with amazing music from talented musicians, is what country music is all about.  It helps us to get through the day and life!

Check out this awesome and entertaining music video of Suzi’s song Live Until You Die. It is fabulous, funny and great musicians too.  See if you can spot her famous father.  Suzi does steal the show!

 

About Suzi Ragsdale

In the recording studio, Suzi Ragsdale has always been an in-demand backing vocalist, heard on more than 60 albums by an impressive array of artists that includes Loretta Lynn, Pam Tillis, Kathy Mattea, Suzy Bogguss, Ian Tyson, Tom Paxton, Watermelon Slim, Hank Williams, Jr., Jo-El Sonnier, and many others. As a songwriter, artists including Dierks Bentley, Miranda Lambert, Jamey Johnson, Rodney Crowell, Hal Ketchum, Lari White, Darrell Scott, Anne Murray, Billy Dean, rock duo Nelson and more have cut her material. Ragsdale also toured as a member in the bands of iconic songwriters Guy Clark and Darrell Scott, the latter of whom produced 1998’s Future Past , her solo debut album. Ragsdale recorded a pair of duet LPs with her ex-husband, Verlon Thompson, before releasing a pair of eclectic EPs, Best Regards and Less of the Same, produced by Tim Lauer. While the release of her solo material hasn’t been extremely prolific, it has always been wide-ranging and impressive, and her latest, Ghost Town— out October 9th, is no exception.

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