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A Satisfied Mind: The Country Music Life of Porter Wagoner Hardcover – May 1, 1992


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Rutledge Hill Pr (May 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558531335
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558531338
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #228,051 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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He's always been a big fan of Porter's and enjoys the reruns of his TV shows.
Sandra Ryder
This is a fantastic read not only for Dolly fans, but for those interested in Porter Wagoner, or those wanting to know more about the country music business.
Terrance Richard
Based on solid research, some cooperation from Porter, and many interviews, Steve Eng simply tells the amazing story of Porter Wagoner's amazing life.
W. Thomas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By W. Thomas on July 28, 2000
Format: Hardcover
You have got to read this book! If you like country music. You have got to read this book. If you like the weird side of country music then you have to read this book. Even if you think you know Porter Wagoner this book will give you information that will amaze you.
A rat nibbled part of his ear off when he was a child. He took the engagement ring pretty Miss Norma Jean threw back at him, when he refused to get a divorce, and had it made into a ring for Mel Tillis. He produced an album for preacher Tony Alamo on which Tony sings duets with his dead wife, who Tony had promised to raise from the dead. He brought James Brown to the Opry, and he performed country music to a disco beat. He pioneered the attempt to bring country music to crossover audiences.
This book is not yellow journalism. Based on solid research, some cooperation from Porter, and many interviews, Steve Eng simply tells the amazing story of Porter Wagoner's amazing life. If more of America read this book and knew the facts about Porter, he would take his rightful place as a premiere icon of country music in popular culture.
In here you will find the true story of Porter songs with cult followings like "The Rubber Room" and "George Leroy Chickashea". You'll also hear the unlikely story of his first big hit, "Satisfied Mind". Dolly Parton fans will find loads of information on her years with Porter.
As you can tell, I love this book. I can't imagine a better one being written, although I hope someday that Porter himself will release the autobiography which he has described as "too hot" to publish. But even then you will need this book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Terrance Richard TOP 500 REVIEWER on December 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover
If they ever make a movie based on the life of superstar Dolly Parton I am sure the producers will wisely look here for some neat information and anecdotes on Miss Parton. "A Satisfied Mind" is the autobiography of country music star Porter Wagoner, but if your a Dolly fan or biographer this book contains loads of info on the early years of the biggest superstar Nashville has ever produced. Steve Eng documents Porter's early life in West Plains, Missouri and his eventual signing to mega label RCA Victor in the 1950's. However, the bulk of the book details in implicit fashion Porter's discovery of Dolly in 1967, her joining his TV and road show that same year, and Porter's persistence with RCA to sign Dolly to the label, much to the chagrin of the label as they felt she couldn't sell records. It was Porter's statement to RCA that if Dolly lost money for them they could take monies from his own royalties, that Dolly became an RCA recording artist. Eng goes behind the scenes of the famous Porter/Dolly duet team, the biggest in country music history, their tireless hours of perfecting both the duo albums and Dolly's solo LP's, their constant touring, Dolly's signing over nearly half of her mutimillion dollar publishing empire to Porter in 1969, and their eventual split, involving broken hearts, bitter words from Porter about his protege, a terrible lawsuit that nearly destroyed Dolly financially, and their eventual forgiveness of each other's shortcomings in the late 1980's. There is more info here on Dolly's early years in Nashville than any other book written on her, including her own memoirs published in 1994. This is a fantastic read not only for Dolly fans, but for those interested in Porter Wagoner, or those wanting to know more about the country music business. Steve Eng has written a fascinating account on one of the more contoversial male singers to ever come out of Nashville.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Allene Phy-Olsen on May 27, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Eng is a constantly provocative writer, with insights into popular culture that resonate far beyond the immediate subject. This is one of the best biographies ever written of a country music star.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Review King on March 13, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
You'll get insider information about Country Music when you read this biography of Porter. I thought there was a great deal of info about Dolly Parton here also, but then the two of them where such a big part of each others lives. If you like to know what went on behind the scenes that produced some of the great people and songs of Country Music, here's another book for you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Birtch on January 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was very good. I could hardly put it down. All the things I had wondered about (was he ever married, did he have children, what was his childhood like) all of this is here and incredibly interesting. I knew he and Dolly Parton had a falling out years ago and I always wondered what caused it. Was it romance or business...its all here. Great book, enjoyed it a lot.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mcgivern Owen L on January 19, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Steve Eng's "A Satisfied Mind" must have been a labor of love to produce. The text is loaded with stories, stories and more stories. Author Eng has loaded in as many quotes and anecdotes as is humanly possible. SM is a virtual mini- history of country music. For example, country's Freddy Hart was a Marine in WW2, a bouncer in a Phenix City, AL nightclub, a dishwasher in New York and a karate instructor for the LAPD. He crossed paths with Porter by writing "Skid Row Joe". And Porter actually had a recording of "The Battle of the Little Big Horn" with `cannon balls a flyin' patterned on the success of Johnny Horton's "The Battle of New Orleans". It 'deservedly' failed to make the charts.

The carefully researched biography traces the life of country icon Porter Wagoner from his childhood in West Plains, MO well into the 1980s. Porter died of lung cancer in 2007, just after his 80th birthday. As an illustration of his diligence, the author conducted some 150 interviews, duly listed in the extensive appendix. There are 6 pages of source notes and a 14 pages of discography, where this reader located a gem of an album, "Porter Wagoner and Skeeter Davis Sing Duets". (This reader reviewed that one separately). Finally, there is a long list of approximately 200 folks who helped Mr. Eng in various ways. Furthermore, there are extensive photos of Porter over the years. Most of these of these are surprisingly clear. There are even renderings of the products PW used to promote on his long running TV shows most notably Black. Draught Laxative, Solstice Cough Syrup and Cardui Tablets. Mr. Eng has left few stones unturned in his portrayal of the man from West Plains. As an example, to pin down a former Dolly Parton residence, Eng searched through old Nashville telephone directories!
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