Nadia Ramlagan interviewed Barbara Martin Stephens for her most recent edition of the Yesterday’s Wine podcast. They spoke at length about Barbara’s book, Don’t Give Your Heart To A Rambler, where she tells her story of living and working with Jimmy Martin when she was a young woman.
Their discussion brings out many of the insecurities and uncertainties that bedeviled Martin throughout his career, and how Barbara helped him both personally and professionally while they were together. Stephens has a comfortable, unassuming speaking style, and this interview put me in mind of the audio version of the book, which Barbara reads herself.
Ramlagan studied radio production at Duke University, and has worked in the industry in her native Baltimore. There she assisted and produced for the Marc Steiner Show on WEAA, and on a variety of independent projects of her own. She has since moved to Lexington, KY where she is reporting for WUKY, in addition to her podcasting efforts.
Don’t Give Your Heart To A Rambler has created something of a stir in the bluegrass and country music community, as it pulls no punches, and leaves no stone unturned in describing Jimmy’s appetites and the many temptations he yielded to in his life.
Barbara also shares some unreleased recordings of Jimmy performing live at New River Ranch in Rising Sun, MD on the podcast.
You can listen to their conversation below, or download it from iTunes to hear at your leisure. At iTunes you can also subscribe to receive all the episodes of Yesterday’s Wine, or you can search for it using the podcast apps on your phone or tablet.
Print and audio versions of the book are available from Barbara’s web site, and paperback and ebook editions from the publisher, University of Illinois Press. She has also released one chapter for free listening on YouTube.