Thankful for 2019

2019 has been such a fun and adventurous year for us. Rod and I were blessed with so many more wonderful opportunities to travel around the state of Arkansas and sing at festivals, schools and senior centers. We are very excited to announce that after working hard the past five years on composing and recording we now have released our debut country album. “Rod and Carol Country Music” which will be available to hear at CDBaby and YouTube in a few short weeks.

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Carol and Rod Patriotic

We have used this fun picture for all our business cards so naturally it became the front of our Cd album cover. It was taken by Cindy Reyes at a patriotic program we sang for at the Children’s Library and Learning Center in Little Rock.

Patriotic Rod and I sang a patriotic program at the Jacksonville Air Force Base Children’s Library in the summer time 2018 and 2019.

We attended the June 3, 2019 Arkansas Country Music Awards and were thrilled to see nominations for Darian Stribling -producer/engineer (from where we record at Blue chair Recording Studio in Austin, Arkansas) and Tim Crouch who won The fiddler of the year award. He has played violin and several other instruments on every single one of our songs. All I can say is we have been blessed -Awesome!

Oh our album has one song that is a standard. It was the very first song I recorded in Nashville when I was a teenager, It is beautiful and the title of it is “ARKANSAS” composed by Damon Black in the 70’s. I choose to record it again because I loved it so much. Its about a young girl and her memories about a 40 acre farm. I was raised on a 40 acre farm in Madison county. I milked goats. We had about 40 goats and many had to be milked every day, twice. I remember my life on the farm fondly.

The other songs on the album are composed and recorded by Rod Ragsdale and myself. titles: “Something I Never Had” “Nothings Better Than You” Thought Wed Have More Time” Full of Class” “Where You Go” “Soldier” and “Clapping Hands”

We sang at the Arkansas Goat Festival this past October held in PerryVille. Wow must have been 8,000 people by days end, plus goats.

 

I sang the national anthem for the Alzheimer’s Walk for the Cure.  Craig O’Niell from channel 11 TVNews was the MC.  We also see him every year when he becomes the star of “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” and we are the Who-Ville singers. Actually after five years Rod got pretty excited to show off our new Cd to The Grinch. The two men always sit here in between shows and share a joke or two, it has become tradition.

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Singing at the Arkansas Goat Festival in Perryville, Arkansas October 2019.

Singing at a family Christmas banquet at Brookdale senior living in Little Rock.

I love recording in the studio and being creative with a brand new song idea. Engineer Darian Stribling is amazing and we lean on him for advise for much of it. Tim Crouch adds all the finishing instrumental touches. We are very blessed to have such a great team.

Banjo from Victory radio in North Little Rock invited us to sing live one afternoon and we ended up talking and singing for almost the whole two hour show. Banjo was and still is a great entertainer and a really nice fellow to call our friend. I use to be a disc jockey when I lived in Hawaii.  It was fun being in this studio and seeing how things have changed now that things are more digital. I really enjoyed being a disc jockey.

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We got into the elevator one day at FoxRidge Senior Living and this sign was taped up next to all the months activities. We are regulars for a many Happy Hours at senior Centers around Central Arkansas. A very fun time to sing, tell jokes and stories to some of the kindest audiences ever. Plus this wonderful golden generation thinks that we are just youngsters. We most often leave with big smiles on our faces from something someone said or did. Always so glad we came.

We also got to travel much more around the state this past year and hope to expand in 2020. (I guess we better do it while we are still ‘youngsters’.) Also with Little Rock, NLR, Maumelle, Bryant, Sherwood, and Conway, we also sang in Star City, Pine Bluff, Camden, Perryville, and Hot Springs. We are very hopeful to get up to Northeast Arkansas and Madison county in 2020.

When we are in Camden we always stop in at Woods Place to have lunch. Highly recommended. Thanks to James and Patty Woods, owners and friends.

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Well these are just some of the over 140 times we sang this past year at festivals, senior centers, schools, libraries, churches, book stores and radio shows. As well as highlights such as the Arkansas State capital, Holiday House, Children’s Library GrinchFest, The Little Rock Zoo, The Good Earth Pumpkin Festival, Outlet Stores, Jacksonville Air Force Base and Alzheimer’s Walk for the Cure. We are thankful for so many who took part in having us be apart of these special events. We love music and the opportunities it gives us to interact with the young and the young at heart.

We hope you will check out our music by going to YouTube and CdBaby online. May God richly bless you in this brand new decade -The Roaring ’20’s has come again!

God has been good to us. He has met our needs and kept us healthy to continue. (I had a medical emergency this past summer which landed me in the hospital for five days. It was a serious situation and I did not take for granted my recovery. More about that later.)

We are thankful for our life’s work and finding each other.

Thankful for our families, (My youngest son graduated from college and is an RN that works at the Arkansas Heart Hospital.  My five children and I added it up and realized that we have had a someone, including me, in college for the last 20 years – happy end of an era. More about that later.)

I am thankful for my job as a music teacher at Saint Mark’s and all the children and teachers that make my life absolutely joyful.

Rod and I are thankful for this great country America, where we have opportunity like no other.

We pray that our music  and stories will touch people and that sometimes we will cause them to sing and laugh along the way.

Blessing to you

Carol and Rod

Singing Trips

Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney enjoy singing for our greatest generation. To do so they traveled to senior centers all over Central Arkansas and added Star City, Pine Bluff, Hot Springs and Camden in the past couple of months. The music they play is a journey back through memory lane by singing songs from the roaring 1920’s, American Doo-Whoop 50’s, soft rock ’60s,  Country, Blues, Broadway, Patriotic, Folk and Gospel. Memory Care Centers especial benefit from this music therapy as faces lite up and they start singing along. For independent living centers its a fun variety show where folks laugh at Rod’s country style jokes and good family fun.

Carol and Rod Patriotic

To contact for programs in the state of Arkansas write carol.dabney@yahoo.com

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A note found in the elevators at FoxRidge Chenal.  Carol and Rod sing for senior communities and centers as often as once a month and get to know folks. They have a very fun time of it. Everyone sings along. They will learn request for the next month. They also enjoy doing themed programs such as Hawaiian Luaus, Mardi Gras, Christmas, Easter parades and family dinners.

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Rod setting up for Patriotic Program at Long Meadows in Camden July 2019

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Singing for a huge family dinner at Presbyterian Village in Little Rock

Playing for the folks at Woodland Heights

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Rod and Carol enjoy entertaining  for the greatest generation. They have done so much for our country and we honor them. May God bless you all this 4th of July. Happy Birthday America.

Carol and Rod sing July '18

  • God Bless America -Love Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney

http://www.caroldabney.com

Music by Rod and Carol

Music by Carol Dabney and Rod Ragsdale. We met at a Fall Festival in 2014. Rod was playing music and I was teaching music at St Mark’s Day School. We started paying music together right away. We had both just lost our mom’s to Alzheimer’s and were independently playing music for nursing homes, so we just continued this amazing mission together, b/c singing for the greatest generation of Americans is a blessing to us. Presently we are regularly singing for over 30 different venues of this kind each month, as well as festivals and children’s libraries.

Carol and Rod Patriotic

I played the ukulele and Rod plays the guitar and harmonica.

Rod and harmonica

My day school children just love Mr. Rod when he comes to do our annual Veteran’s Day program and he plays his harmonica and shows them some magic tricks. Rod served in the Navy and was in the golf industry for over 35 years. He has one son that works at Disney World as a golf pro. instructor. Now that Rod is retired he can sing with me every day after I come home from school.

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I love teaching music at St. Mark’s Episcopal Day School in Little Rock Arkansas. I have five children and nine grandchildren. I lived in Hawaii for 20 years and that’s why I play the ukulele. I have been a radio disc jockey and music resource teacher at many schools and churches. This picture was taken at don Roberts School in Little Rock.

Rod and cabin

This is where we met. The Plantation Cotton Festival in Scott, Arkansas. That’s Rod getting ready to go on ‘stage’ and sing. He asked me out that day and we have been together ever since. I know what you’re thinking, and Yes!  he is as cute as pecan pie. This country singer sitting in front of this amazing cabin was more then I could stand, so I scooped him right up . See, I was raised on a goat farm in Madison county and so this is my cup of tea. I love this cabin and I love the country.

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Of course we composed our own wedding song from the book of Ruth… “Where You Go, I will go. Where you live, I will live. Your people will be my people and your God will be my God.” We were recording music at Blue Chair Recording studio in Austin, Arkansas with a talented engineer Darian Stribling. He was helping us record audiobooks and songs for children and presently we are working on a country album. All our music has beautiful violin music played by noted musician Tim Crouch. He makes the arrangements come to life. I wish we could record more, but its costly, so we pay as we go, recording whenever we have extra money in the kitty.

This beautiful picture was taken by Rebekah Schmitz at the school where I teach

  • side note here: Both Darian and Tim have been nominated for the Arkansas Country Music awards to be held in Maumelle June 3, 2019. Very excited and proud to know them.

    We are having so much fun with music.

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  • This is at FoxRidge Chenal

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We even did a bit of a road trip this year. During Thanksgiving break we sang in Camden Arkansas where Rod went to school. This was sponsored by Woods Catering. We sang for the nursing homes and the library. 140 children turned out to have Christmas stories read to them, sing Christmas songs, and see a bit of Mr. Rod’s magic.

Carol and Rod Woods place

We also traveled to Star city during Spring Break and what a sweet town. We have plans to return several times this summer and fall. Looking forward to that.

Carol at star City

Singing Patriotic shows at the Air Force Base in Jacksonville library, and we will return July 11. Patriotic show at  Sherwood Elmcroft.

We sang Christmas songs and read a Christmas story for children “Twas The mouse Before Christmas” a Christmas tale I wrote and Rod and I sang. A film producer and writer friend of mine John Elchier captured the storytime and put it on YouTube.

Also Rod became the singing Santa at a Christmas in July program at Andover Place

( that’s why he has shorts on)  don’t you love those groovy socks?

Carol and Rod 1950s sang at a 1950’s sock hop patriotic Veteran’s show in North Little Rock.

Carol sings Alz.

  • This was a fund raising event for Alzheimer’s at Pleasant Valley.
  • Carol and Rod sing in snow
  • Singing in the Antrium at Woodland during a snow shower. April Pollard took this picture.
  • Carol and Rod at Mardi Gras
  • Mardi Gras program at Stonehaven.
  • A Roaring ’20’s show at Andover with director Donya.
  • Singing Christmas carols at the Capital every December is a highlight. Pictured with my sister Cindy and daughter Michelle dancing hula to White Christmas.
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    Hawaiian shows at Woodland with the staff. Bryant Sr. Center and Elmcroft in Maumelle.

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    Carol at piano

  • Composing music for our country album. Picture during Parkstone program.
  • Blue Chair Recording Studio in Austin Arkansas. We are having a great adventure and excited to see what’s next. I guess we can say, you are never too old to live your dreams. Thanks for stopping in. May God richly bless you with family, friends, and a dream in your heart.

ParkBench Interview

ParkBench

ParkBench interview of Carol Dabney by Barb Roberts 2019

https://parkbench.com/blog/childrens-author-singer-and-artist-books-maumelle-carol-dabney?fbclid=IwAR3Mr4GTTdXI4PrRzuA9Dh8THajXZCwiY0XSTyUoNkj5jfJ_zy4hlUD2XN8#.XEzCaTLduHQ.facebook

 

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I big Thank you to Barb Roberts for this ParkBench interview.  She talks with folks every day to share their work and she shows such amazing support for others.

 

Music by Rod and Carol August 2016

We always thank our seniors for the contribution they have made to our great nation. They are always a wonderful audience to sing for and we are so blessed to have the opportunity to do so. We end our shows with God Bless America blending two of our greatest passions into music- God and country. Singing at Fox Ridge in North Little Rock on a Sunday afternoon in August. Rod playing his harmonica and guitar, telling jokes and making folks laugh. We sing a variety of music and since we return each month we can learn music they request, such as Tennessee Waltz, Summertime and How Great Thou Art.

 

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Briarwood residents really like Hank Williams songs. Then the Hawaiian Luaus…

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Big crowd at the Bryant Senior Center Hawaiian Luau. August 2016. Little Grass Shack, Tiny Bubbles, Hukilau Song, and the Limbo Song. Hula and lots of good food.

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More Hawaiian fun at The Manor in Little Rock. Was able to share about my Ohana in Hilo that I love so much: Rainbow Falls, snow-capped Mauna Kea, Kilauea Volcano. Oahu where my daughter was stationed in the Army, North Shore, Sea Life Park. I played my ukulele and we danced a bit of hula.

Then we went back to our regularly schedule programs of country, folk, patriotic, gospel and blues at Brookdale, Elmcroft and Fox Ridge till the end of August. Then school started and I went back to teaching music at St. Mark’s Day School where I work during the school year.

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We always thank our seniors for the contribution they have made to our great nation. They are always wonderful audiences to sing for and we are so blessed to have the opportunity to do so. We end our shows with God Bless America blending two of our greatest passions: into music- America and God.

Our music and books are available at Amazon. Please take a moment to check out our children’s books:

https://www.amazon.com/Carol-Dabney/e/B0056B1AFW

 

 

 

Singing with Rod and Carol May 2016

Rod and I love singing together. We both have a passion for God and country. We sing a variety of songs from country, folk, gospel, patriotic, blues, oldies, Broadway, and even Hawaiian. Here are some pictures of our events in May of 2016. We started out at the Scott Fire and Rescue Department fundraiser dinner. Scott farming community has a special place in our hearts because we met at the Scott’s Plantation Settlement Cotton Festival 3 years ago.

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With fire chef and Bobby Joe Turner.

We sing as regulars at Elmcroft Nursing home in Maumelle twice a month.

Our summer was filled with several Hawaiian Luau programs. Pictures from Andover Place and Presbyterian Village in Little Rock.

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We also sang and read stories for several schools starting with St. Marks. Spring Butterfly story Bows and Butterflies about Carlos the caterpillar. This story is available on Amazon along with the audiobook we read.

Brookdale became a regular starting in April 2016, singing every first Saturday of the month in the late afternoons.

We were the musicians for a service downtown Little Rock at Quapaw Quarter’s Methodist Church.

Yes we are available to sing for your event or program if you are in the Little Rock area. We sing at schools, festivals, churches, funerals, fire departments, libraries, and nursing homes. Just email me at carol.dabney@yahoo.com

Children’s events coming up is Holiday House with Santa on Saturday November 12 from 9-noon at the Arkansas State Convention Center. The Arkansas State Capital annual Christmas tree lighting on Saturday December 3 from 6-8 singing Christmas songs. The Maumelle public Library December 10 and 11:30 for story time reading of Twas the mouse and Christmas and Golfing with Santa plus Christmas songs. The Clinton Children’s Library Monday December 19 at 11am story time and songs.

All our books are available on Amazon. Carol Dabney. Thank you for your support.

https://www.amazon.com/Carol-Dabney/e/B0056B1AFW

Singing at Nursing Homes, a great generation part 2, Jan-April 2016

Singing at nursing homes and for assisted living residents is so rewarding. They seem to appreciate the music we share from the oldies, country, patriotic, gospel, soft rock, Disney, Hawaiian, and folk. We take pictures of where we have been but do not take pictures of the their faces, however it is their faces that touch my heart when we sing a song and I see them go from sitting half asleep in their wheel chairs to their eyes lighting up and begin to clap and sing along. There is something wonderful in those faces when they start to remember through a song. It makes me wonder what kind of life did they have? What war, what work, what love, what families they had? My father had Alzheimer’s and forgot so much, but when I sang a song he remembered he could sing every word. Those songs would lite up in his eyes and he would say, “You made my day” so I found music reaches a part of our heart, music goes to the soul like nothing else can. It’s amazing and God has blessed me with the passion of music. I teach music to children at school during the mornings and the afternoons I sing at nursing homes. It is my gift, so I sing.

Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney

Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney play music for the very young and the very old.

January at Elmcroft in Maumelle Arkansas with our one small speaker and one microphone we shared.

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snow and nursing home humor

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in a bigger room at Elmcroft a few weeks later with a bigger speaker and two microphones.

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Elmcroft asked if we would twice a month. Rod likes to tell a joke or two …sometimes he is funny!

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in February we went to Lakewood Nursing Homer in North Little Rock  for their Valentines Program

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Mardi Gras program at Pleasant Valley Nursing Home

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we sang Oh When the Saints Go Marching In, Mardi Gras Time, and Proud Mary

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oh below is my son Josh… he plays the ukulele too. I lived in Hawaii for 15 years and all my children are musical and we would often play music as a family at the nursing homes on the Islands. This is Joshua’s senior photo. He attends UCA now.

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March and the St Patrick’s program at Lakewood… I love that they have the same white tree up for Christmas, then change to hearts for Valentines and then add the green hats for St Patrick’s celebration.

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Emcroft

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In March and April we also went to Valley Ranch, Stonehaven, Brairwood and Andovere nursing homes in Little Rock.

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Got hula… got Hawaiian luau music

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Love to sing patriotic programs… Rod and my dad were in the Navy…my sister is a retired Air Force Lt Col. and my daughter is a Army captain.

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in April there was more Hawaiian fun. Looking forward to more. We are working on recording a album of our own music for a summer time release 2016 Nothing Better Than You… of songs we have composed.

other music available at Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/Just-My-Imagination-Carol-Dabney/dp/B00004RI81/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1461411794&sr=8-1&keywords=Carol+Dabney+music+Just+My+Imagination