Top 79 Carlene Carter Quotes

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“I’ve always wanted to make records that rock like hell. But also, I’ve never wanted to compromise that Country place deep inside.”

― Carlene Carter

“I love to be surrounded by nature.”

― Carlene Carter

“I love rock n’ rollers.”

― Carlene Carter

“Don’t try to be like somebody else. You’ll be miserable. You need to be yourself, and don’t ever get a big head.”

― Carlene Carter

“I always have to just be myself. Anything else, I’m not happy, and it comes out musically.”

― Carlene Carter

“I believe everything falls into place as it’s supposed to.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’m a bubbling brew of emotions, but mostly, I’m an optimistic person.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’m really about my family and really proud of being a Carter.”

― Carlene Carter

“I have great stories. I am going to write a book.”

― Carlene Carter

“MusiCares was really good to me. I can’t say enough how MusiCares helps other people. They really, really helped me. They have the greatest groups and support for musicians in recovery.”

― Carlene Carter

“My mother has always been open about all kinds of music and entertainment. She wanted us to see that it was not just country music and the Grand Ole Opry.”

― Carlene Carter

“My Smiths, my Carters, the Cashes – everybody embraced me and held my arms up when I couldn’t do it myself.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’m kind of a perfectionist about my songwriting. If I don’t mean it, I don’t think it’s any good.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’ve had a few ditty hits.”

― Carlene Carter

“I moved back to Tennessee in ’86 or ’87. That’s when I worked with the Carter Family because I really wanted to understand my roots.”

― Carlene Carter

“Lots of girls marry at 16 in Tennessee.”

― Carlene Carter

“There was a period where I was a little scared that I’d blown my chance.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’ve matured as a writer and human being. I’ve got some wisdom under my belt.”

― Carlene Carter

“I do feel I’m responsible to carrying on the music. That’s what I was charged with as a kid. When I was a little girl, I was told, ‘When we are gone’ – when you’re a kid, you never think they’ll ever be gone – ‘you have to keep the music alive, the Carter Family songs, and add your own songs.’”

― Carlene Carter

“I was thinking about it: so many of my stories are about my family life, not about being related to a lot of famous people. That’s my grandma, that’s my mama, my daddy, my aunt, my uncle, my stepdaddy. I’d probably tell them even if they weren’t well known.”

― Carlene Carter

“I started playing piano when I was 6, ukulele at 7.”

― Carlene Carter

“I always wanted to be the rockin’est country chick in the universe.”

― Carlene Carter

“If someone gets married at 15, they’re either dumb or pregnant. I was both.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’m pretty much an open book.”

― Carlene Carter

“My songs are about who I am.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’ve always had wanderlust to try and do different things, but I always return to the music of the Carter family.”

― Carlene Carter

“There are no rules when it comes to songwriting, so I’d turn Carter family songs from the 1930s into pop songs.”

― Carlene Carter

“If someone asked me to do something I didn’t want to do or didn’t think was right, I wouldn’t do it.”

― Carlene Carter

“Sometimes, it’s good to stick to your guns.”

― Carlene Carter

“There’s something unnatural about losing a sibling when they’re young.”

― Carlene Carter

“I don’t know how I got out of some of the scrapes I was in. But I know that there’s some sort of plan.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’ve always been one of those people – once I start something, I have to get it all out, because it gets me.”

― Carlene Carter

“I like things all shined up and rocking with hooky pop choruses.”

― Carlene Carter

“I don’t really have any ditties left in me anymore.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’d had three husbands by 23. The second was a songwriter who couldn’t handle the fact the little lady was doing better than him.”

― Carlene Carter

“I like to do one thing at a time and do it to the best of my ability.”

― Carlene Carter

“I don’t have any regrets at all.”

― Carlene Carter

“It’s all for a reason and all happened the way it was supposed to happen.”

― Carlene Carter

“One good thing is I was instilled with really good values. My mom treats everyone the same.”

― Carlene Carter

“Musically, I always wanted to experiment.”

― Carlene Carter

“I think, looking back, there was a lot of fear of success in me. When you are successful, you have to keep it up… it requires you to be responsible, and I had been pretty irresponsible.”

― Carlene Carter

“I always knew I would make the record that I made in ‘Carter Girl.’”

― Carlene Carter

“I can laugh and cry at the drop of a freakin’ hat – all at the same time.”

― Carlene Carter

“Everyone deals with loss. I’m no different, but we all find our ways of coming through things. Is it tough? Of course, but you find the strength to push on through.”

― Carlene Carter

“I fly from the seat of my pants, basically.”

― Carlene Carter

“I’ve always been one to throw caution to the wind, and my motto has been, ‘Never have a dull moment.’ Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t, but I don’t think I’d have it much differently.”

― Carlene Carter

“I challenged myself to carry on the style of guitar that my grandmother did: the Carter scratch.”

― Carlene Carter

“Working with Mellencamp, I made new fans, people that may have never heard of me. They may have heard I was related to the Carter Family or Johnny Cash somehow, but what they got was pure Carlene.”

― Carlene Carter

“Grandma and Mama showed me that you always have to give as much as you can, no matter what.”

― Carlene Carter

“I just know what I want, and I’m willing to butt heads with folks to get it.”

― Carlene Carter

“I was always in a big hurry to do everything. Before I was 20, I was married twice and had two kids. But I don’t regret any of it. I learned a lot about myself. I had a lot to say for someone my age, real early on.”

― Carlene Carter

“It’s a matriarchal family, the Carters. A.P. was the original head of the Carter family, but the women were always strong. There were no questions asked in that regard; you had better be strong.”

― Carlene Carter

“I got into photography when my kids were little, and I continued talking pictures over the years.”

― Carlene Carter

“In the late ’70s, I was falling into the middle lane. I was way too country to be rock, and way too rock to be a country act.”

― Carlene Carter

“The first five albums I did, I tried a little bit of everything. I was trying not to conform at all.”

― Carlene Carter

“Basically, I grew up watching Carter girls on stage, watching my grandmother, my mom and my aunts perform. They used to say, ‘Okay, Carter girls, you’re on!’”

― Carlene Carter

“I wanted to play rocking country music, and when I started out in the late Seventies, it took me a couple of albums to figure out how to do that.”

― Carlene Carter

“Be yourself. And every person is unique.”

― Carlene Carter

“Eccentricity has never been discouraged in our family.”

― Carlene Carter

“Whenever I’ve not known what to do, I’ve always gone back to the Carter Family because there was nothing like singing with my aunts and my mom to my grandma.”

― Carlene Carter

“My grandma passed in ’78, and that’s the year I started recording. It’s also the year that my dad retired from his career. So it’s funny how torches get passed on, and you feel a responsibility to be connected to the music that they did and try to carry it on in your own way.”

― Carlene Carter

“The first time I went on stage as an adult was touring with the Johnny Cash Show. I’d sang as a child. But my grown-up initiation was as part of that band.”

― Carlene Carter

“I learned how to sing in front of a lot of people and to hone my skills alongside some of the greatest performers of all time.”

― Carlene Carter

“Whenever I get to a point I’m so tired that I forgot the verse of a song, I know I’m burnt out.”

― Carlene Carter

“I feel the audience are friends that have come to see us. That was always how we look on it in the Carter Family. I’ve never suffered stage fright.”

― Carlene Carter

“When I’m on stage, I know exactly where I am. It’s not an ego thing or anything like that, but I am more in my body and aware of myself and aware of what I’m doing, and I feel more from that, from sharing the music.”

― Carlene Carter

“Even city people have ancestors who had their hands in the dirt.”

― Carlene Carter

“I grew up on the side of the stage. I never had a fear of an audience. I never felt like they were separated from us. We were all in the living room, and it happens to be a big living room. I continue to operate on that assumption.”

― Carlene Carter

“A lot of people said I was a rebel. I wasn’t.”

― Carlene Carter

“I never, by any regard, ever denied any part of my family roots.”

― Carlene Carter

“Sometimes I get emotional when I’m doing ‘Lonesome Valley’ or ‘Wildwood Rose.’”

― Carlene Carter

“I wood-shedded for a year to play Grandma’s simple stuff. It’s not that simple, and I don’t use picks the way she does. But I played them as authentically as I could, with the flat-picking.”

― Carlene Carter

“Hopefully, people will rediscover real country music. After all, it’s in my blood.”

― Carlene Carter

“I hate parameters. They immediately alienate a bunch of people.”

― Carlene Carter

“Music should be judged on what you hear, not what you think you might hear.”

― Carlene Carter

“When I first came out, country wouldn’t touch me because I was way too rock, and rock wouldn’t touch me because I was definitely country.”

― Carlene Carter

“I grew up quick because my family was away a lot, and I took care of my sister. Then in my 20s, I went through my teens, with these ‘wild abandon’ things.”

― Carlene Carter

“My mom is a great entertainer.”

― Carlene Carter

“You can have a big hit and not get rich.”

― Carlene Carter
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