1. Hoofbeats, Heartbeats & Wings
2. Born To Ride
3. Green On Green
4. Hayin’ Time
5. When You Carry Me
6. My Home
7. Horsin’ Around
8. Cleanin’ Stalls
11. Jack Russell
13. Horses In Heaven
14. Spirit Horse
About Mary Ann Kennedy
As far back as I can remember, my life has been made up of animals and music . . . . .
If I wasn’t singing and playing guitar, making up songs or practicing with my cousin, Randy, for our family band “The Country Cousins”, I was running around with the animals and riding: first ponies, then horses. I always felt blessed to have been born with such passionate interests. I never had to “wonder” or search for my bliss. I’m grateful for that.
I always sang in school choirs and performed country music with the family band. In college I performed in country and pop bands while working on my choral music degree at the University of Wisconsin. After graduation, I taught Jr. high school choral music for 2 years. As fulfilling as it was, the urge to create and perform took over and I ventured to Music City. I quit my teaching job, sold my current horse, took my companion cat, Mits, and gave my all to pursue the dream of succeeding in the music business. I somehow knew it was part of the plan, and that I would have horses back in my life as soon as I had my first hit.
Arriving in Nashville in 1978, I signed my first publishing deal. Within 3 years time I, thankfully, was signed to a record deal as part of the group Calamity Jane and was experiencing my first single as a songwriter, the Grammy nominated “Ring On Her Finger, Time On Her Hands”. So – back to being a horse owner, and, of course, dogs, too!
After Calamity Jane, in 1981, I signed with Almo Irving Music. During that time I co-wrote the recently recorded Martina McBride hit “Safe In The Arms Of Love”. I, with co-writers and dear friends Pam Rose and Pat Bunch, developed a unique, heart felt style and in-demand sound. From the very beginning the partnership seemed blessed, as several of our collaborations became hits. In fact, a second song earned a Grammy nomination: “I’ll Still Be Loving You” by Restless Heart. Pam and I had the wonderful opportunity to join Emmylou Harris as her harmony singers, and have since performed as singers and players on several of her tours and concerts. The duo sound we had developed came to be known as Kennedy-Rose, and we were fortunate enough to be heard by Sting, and he signed us to his Pangaea record label. We wrote and produced 2 CD’s between the years 1990-95, “Hai Ku” and “Walk The Line”. We toured with Sting and had many priceless experiences. After the Kennedy-Rose chapter, I began focusing on my country music business pursuits again. As a writer, I signed to EMI music for 3 years. As a co-owner and publisher of Gila Monster Music and Dreamcatcher Music, I spent several years working with and developing writers, producing their song demos as well. A number of hits were realized out of those catalogs and many more great friendships were formed.
I have had the pleasure of singing backgrounds and playing mandolin on many Nashville records, and on some of the songs I have had recorded. I’ve recorded with Martina McBride, Faith Hill, LeAnn Rimes, Art Garfunkel, Reba McEntire, Diamond Rio, Pam Tillis, Hank Williams Jr., John Berry, Kathy Mattea, Emmylou Harris, Blackhawk, Maura O’Connell, Ashley Cleveland, Mindy McCready, Anita Cochran and Caroline Dawn Johnson, to name some.
The culmination of my 2 loves, music and horses & animals, has been expressed on my first solo CD “The Trail Less Traveled”. I was inspired after losing 2 of my beloved animal soul mates in the summer of 2000. Tonka, my beautiful 9 year old pinto gaited horse, and Choy, my 15 year old sweet pug. Through my grief, little did I know that losing them would inspire a whole new musical chapter in my life. Death and rebirth, the circle of life—it is amazing and I continue to be grateful.
The newly released “Hoofbeats, Heartbeats & Wings” CD is a continuation of the journey, largely inspired by embracing natural horsemanship.
My mission is to share this music that celebrates our relationships with our animal families and hope that it will inspire healing, joy and a celebration of life to all who hear it.