Our interview with Carpenters star Carole Gordon – “life is too short not to enjoy”

With a stunning voice and a sparkling personality, Carole Gordon has been wowing audiences up and down Britain with her wonderful production “Voice of the Heart – Karen Carpenter”. For eight years Carole and her husband Bob were voted “Britain’s Most Popular Act” by The British Country Music Association.

Ahead of her visit to The Elgiva next week, we chatted to Carole about her life in song and what draws her to the music of the late Karen Carpenter.

The Elgiva: You have had a rather varied career! What are some of the highlights?

Carole Gordon: My late husband Bob and I had an amazing time supporting Tammy Wynette on many of her sell-out tours in the UK and we were proud to represent Great Britain in Nashville USA at The International Fanfare. Singing live on BBC Breakfast Time and hearing our music feature on Radio 2 was also very memorable. We were also part of the popular Sing Country show on BBC2 and sang live at The International Wembley Festival.

The Elgiva: You went into business for yourselves?

Carole Gordon: We set up Full House Productions in the early 1990s to run both “The Carpenters – Voice Of The Heart” & “Forever In Blue Jeans”. Touring these productions as well as starring in them gave us a real insight into the industry. We ran every aspect of the company together.

The Elgiva: Sadly, Bob is no longer with us, but you are still touring?

Carole Gordon: Yes; my lovely husband Bob passed away just over 5 years ago from cancer of the oesophagus. As well as running our production company together for over 20 years, we had worked on stage both as an act plus running the business for 30 + years. In The Carpenters show Bob was both producer and bass player.

Leading up to his death Bob played in the shows until he could no longer stand there on stage, but he insisted I carry on with the tour.  I wasn’t keen on working without him as I felt I couldn’t handle it on my own. However, he insisted I carry on throughout his illness and ultimately his passing… His actual words were that if I stopped singing, or indeed running the business, he would come back and haunt me! He meant it in the nicest possible way of course.

The Elgiva: Has Bob’s death affected the way you perform?

Carole Gordon: I am now loving performing again, although I have to admit that many of the sad songs in the Carpenters production now reflect my own experience in the words and the melancholy, “Particularly Yesterday Once More” and “Goodbye To Love”. However, I also now find hope in such songs as “We’ve Only just Begun” and hope that I may be lucky enough to find love again.

I’m definitely not a sad person; thanks in part to the courage and strength of Bob in his last couple of months, I have resolved that life is too short not to enjoy and be thankful for every day we have in this exciting world of ours.

The Carpenters – Voice of the Heart has been rescheduled to Thursday 4th March 2021.

9th March 2020