4th June, 2012
Naomi Judd’s new limited-run SiriusXM radio talk show has no safety net, and even the country star says with a laugh she isn’t sure that’s a great idea.
“If you’ve been at a press conference, you know I’ve said things I haven’t thought of — whoa,” Judd said. “That’s why they asked me. And there’s no 5-second delay. I’m wandering the woods without a map.”
Judd hopes “Think Twice,” which starts its six-week run of hour-long Friday morning episodes June 8, will be a place the satellite radio network’s 22 million subscribers can turn to for a free-form discussion of ideas and topics, from current events and politics to issues like abortion and evolution.
“I hope to blow away stereotypes,” she said in a phone interview. “I’m not just a big-haired redhead country singer who dresses flamboyantly, has this wicked sense of humor and wears rhinestones. They have no idea about my underground secret life for 20 years.”
First, the 66-year-old Grammy winner will examine her own life and her relationship with daughter Ashley Judd. Mother and daughter will sit down together in front of a studio audience next Tuesday to tape the debut episode.
Judd’s voice filled with emotion. She said that though the two have spent time together since Ashley Judd published a memoir last year that placed stress on their relationship, they have not spoken about the book or the revelations that Ashley was sexually abused as a child, including by a family member.
When “All That is Bitter & Sweet” was published last year, Ashley Judd said she’d never told her mother of the abuse. Both Naomi Judd and her other daughter, duo partner Wynonna Judd, say they also suffered sexual abuse.
“I admit I’m a little nervous about doing it because this is the first time that Ashley and I have ever done anything together,” Judd said. “And I’m going to ask her about what happened in our relationship — whoa, I have to take a deep breath before that one.”
Judd said she would also ask her daughter about her feelings over the recent cancellation of her television series “Missing” and her emotions watching her husband, three-time Indy 500 champion Dario Franchitti, race in the aftermath of the death of his close friend Dan Wheldon.
“I know she’ll want to talk about her severe depression and share some ways that have gotten her to such a happy, stable place,” Judd said. “But I think really it’s probably going to be about our relationship because there’s some … Oh, boy.”
Judd says she has now read “Bitter & Sweet.” In the end, she said she felt it was her duty as a parent to read the book. Now she thinks the things she learned during the process can be instructive for parents who are dealing with similarly difficult issues.
“I had to take a deep breath before I opened the book and I read it by myself when I was in a good mood and had space and time,” Judd said. “I knew I would probably be hollering out loud at certain things — ‘It didn’t happen that way! I was there!’ — but (I was) acknowledging that anyone in a relationship has a completely different reality, and I wanted to know what my daughter’s personal experiences and journeys were.”