What Is Barbara Mandrell’s Net Worth?
Barbara Mandrell is an American country music singer, musician, actress, producer, and author who has a net worth of $50 million. Mandrell played steel guitar for the legendary Patsy Cline, and she toured with Cline and Johnny Cash when she was just 13 years old. Barbara has released more than 25 studio albums, including “The Midnight Oil” (1973), “Moods” (1978), “Love Is Fair” (1980), “…In Black & White” (1982), “Spun Gold” (1983), and “It Works for Me” (1994), and she is known for singles such as “Standing Room Only,” “Married, But Not to Each Other,” “Woman to Woman,” “Tonight,” “Sleeping Single in a Double Bed,” “(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Want to Be Right,” “Years,” “I Was Country When Country Wasn’t Cool,” “‘Till You’re Gone,” and “One of a Kind Pair of Fools.”
From 1980 to 1982, she starred on the NBC variety show “Barbara Mandrell & the Mandrell Sisters” with her younger sisters Irlene and Louise, and she has also appeared on the television series “The Rockford Files” (1979), “Empty Nest” (1993), “The Commish” (1994), “Touched by an Angel” (1996; 1998), “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” (1996), “Baywatch” (1997), “Diagnosis Murder” (1997), “Sunset Beach” (1997–1998), “Love Boat: The Next Wave” (1998), and “Walker, Texas Ranger” (2000). Mandrell produced the TV movie “Get to the Heart: The Barbara Mandrell Story” (1997) and the specials “Barbara Mandrell: The Lady Is a Champ” (1983), “Barbara Mandrell: Something Special” (1985), and “Barbara Mandrell’s Christmas: A Family Reunion” (1986), and she published the memoir “Get to the Heart: My Story” in 1990. She was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2009, and she was the first performer to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year award twice.
Barbara Mandrell was born Barbara Ann Mandrell on December 25, 1948, in Houston, Texas. She is the daughter of Irby (a police officer) and Mary Ellen (a music teacher), and she has two younger sisters. Barbara grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas, and Oceanside, California, and she began singing publicly as a child. During her youth, Mandrell also learned to play several instruments, including the accordion. After the family moved to Oceanside when Barbara was 6 years old, Irby opened a music store. As an elementary school student, Mandrell played the saxophone in the school band and took steel guitar lessons from Norman Hamlet, a friend of her father’s. After Barbara had been playing steel guitar for a few years, her father took her to Chicago to perform at a music trade show. Country music guitarist Joe Maphis was impressed with Mandrell’s performance and helped launch her music career.
In 1960, 11-year-old Barbara performed on Maphis’ Las Vegas country music show, and Joe helped her land a regular spot on the California country music television program “Town Hall Party.” Mandrell toured with Patsy Cline and Johnny Cash in 1962 and played steel guitar for Little Jimmy Dickens, Red Foley, and Tex Ritter.
When Barbara was 14 years old, she played steel guitar in the Mandrell Family Band, which included her father on vocals and her mother on piano. The band played at U.S. military bases, and Barbara learned how to play bass guitar and banjo during her time in the group. She was voted Miss Oceanside California in 1965, and she graduated from high school two years later.
Mandrell’s father eventually became her manager, and after performing at a show in Nashville, six record companies wanted to sign her. She signed with Columbia Records in 1969, and later that year, her first single, a cover of Otis Redding’s “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now),” reached #55 on the “Billboard” Hot Country Singles chart. Barbara released her debut album, “Treat Him Right,” on October 4, 1971, and it reached #44 on the “Billboard” Top Country Albums chart. Her follow-up, 1973’s “The Midnight Oil,” reached #8 and included her first top 10 single, “Tonight My Baby’s Coming Home.” By the end of the decade, she had released seven more albums (two of them cracking the top 10) as well as the #1 singles “Sleeping Single in a Double Bed,” “(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Want to Be Right,” and “Years.”
Mandrell released 11 solo albums in the ’80s, with “Love Is Fair” (1980), “…In Black & White” (1982), “Spun Gold” (1983), and “Clean Cut” (1984) reaching the top 10 on the Top Country Albums chart. She had 15 top 10 singles during that decade, including “I Was Country When Country Wasn’t Cool,” “‘Till You’re Gone,” “One of a Kind Pair of Fools,” “Only a Lonely Heart Knows,” “Fast Lanes and Country Roads,” and “I Wish I Could Fall in Love Today.” From 1980 to 1982, she starred on “Barbara Mandrell & the Mandrell Sisters,” which aired 36 episodes over two seasons and earned her a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical; the show was also nominated for Best Television Series – Comedy or Musical. In the ’90s, Mandrell released the albums “Morning Sun” (1990), “No Nonsense” (1990), “Key’s in the Mailbox” (1991), “Acoustic Attitude” (1994), and “It Works for Me” (1994) and the singles “You’ve Become the Dream,” “Men and Trains,” “I’ll Leave Something Good Behind,” “Feed the Fire,” and “The Key’s in the Mailbox.” In 1997, Barbara announced that she was retiring from performing, touring, and recording, and her final performance took place at the Grand Ole Opry house that October. Since her retirement from music, she has appeared in the TV movies “The Wrong Girl” (1999) and “Stolen from the Heart” (2000). Mandrell also released the live album “Barbara Mandrell Live” (1981), and she collaborated with David Houston on 1972’s “A Perfect Match” and with Lee Greenwood on 1984’s “Meant for Each Other.”
On May 28, 1967, Barbara married Ken Dudney, a former Navy pilot and musician who played drums for the Mandrell Family Band. The couple began dating when Barbara was 14 and Ken was 21, and Dudney broke off an engagement to be with her. Barbara and Ken have three children, sons Matthew (born 1970) and Nathaniel (born 1985) and daughter Jaime (born 1976). In 1984, Barbara, Matthew, and Jaime were involved a car accident in Nashville, Tennessee, when 19-year-old Mark White crossed the center line of the road and hit Mandrell’s Jaguar XJ. White died in the accident, and Matthew and Jaime had minor injuries. Barbara suffered a shattered ankle, broken femur, and injured knee as well as a concussion that caused her to have temporary brain damage. Mandrell was in pain for months after the accident, and her head injury caused memory loss and a temporary change in her personality. Barbara has said that it took three years to fully recover from her head injury. Mandrell credited seat belts with helping her family survive the accident, and she made commercials encouraging people to wear them. In 1985, she was named honorary chairman of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the following year, she sued White’s family for more than $10 million in damages because it was the only way to collect from the insurance company according to Tennessee’s laws.
Awards and Nominations
Barbara has been nominated for 11 Grammys, winning Best Inspirational Performance for “He Set My Life to Music” (1983) and Best Soul Gospel Performance by a Duo or Group for “I’m So Glad I’m Standing Here Today” (1984), which she recorded with Bobby Jones. She has won Academy of Country Music Awards for Most Promising Female Vocalist (1970), Top Female Vocalist (1978 and 1981), Entertainer of the Year (1980), the Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award (2000), and Triple Crown (2005), and she has earned nine People’s Choice Awards (six for Favorite All-Around Female Entertainer, two for Favorite Female Musical Performer, and one for Favorite Female TV Performer). Barbara has received six American Music Awards for Favorite Country Female Artist and one for Favorite Country Song (“Sleeping Single in a Double Bed”), and she earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical for “Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters” in 1982.
Mandrell has won nine CMT Music Awards: Most Promising Female Artist of the Year (1976), Female Artist of the Year (1979, 1981, and 1982), Comedian of the Year (1981), Instrumentalist of the Year (1981 and 1982), the Living Legend Award (1985), and the Minnie Pearl Award (1991). She has been nominated for more than 20 Country Music Association Awards, winning Female Vocalist of the Year in 1979 and 1981 and Entertainer of the Year in 1980 and 1981. She was honored with the James D. Vaughn Impact Award from the Southern Gospel Music Association in 2009, and she received a star on the Music City Walk of Fame in 2007. Barbara has been inducted into the Country Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame (1998), Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum (2009), and Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum (2014).
Mandrell and her family used to live in a 27,000 square foot mansion in Nashville’s Whites Creek neighborhood. After the family decided to move out of the 20-room home (which is known as Fontanel Mansion) in 2002, investors Marc Oswald and Dale Morris bought the property and turned it into a “gorgeous Tennessee retreat” that features an inn, a music venue, Fontanel Records, and Natchez Hill Winery. Barbara’s daughter, Jaime, was the property’s director of hospitality until 2017. The mansion was built for Barbara’s family in 1988, and it is said to be the world’s largest log cabin.