It's not likely to get heavy airplay on MTV, but veteran game show host Wink Martindale says his planned CD of narratives celebrating "Mom, God, country and apple pie" is a project whose time has come.

"There are certain things that need to be said right now," explains Martindale, who's planning a mid-April release for Winking at Life: My Favorite Narratives. His readings, backed by musical accompaniment, will include "The Pledge of Allegiance," Casey at the Bat, If Jesus Came to Your House, and a remake of his 1959 hit record, "Deck of Cards." "I'm one of those real sentimental fools," he tells TV Guide Online. "I cry at the drop of a hat and I'm very patriotic."

Martindale is also busy hosting the syndicated radio show Music of Your Life and promoting a just-published autobiography, also titled Winking at Life (both the book and the upcoming CD are available at his web site, The book chronicles his 45-year career path from Tennessee disc jockey to the host of 19 (yep, 19!) game shows. Martindale, who knew Elvis Presley from his early days and whose wife, Sandy, actually dated the King of rock and roll, also writes in the book about their last visit with the legend.

"It was a sad evening when we left there," Martindale says quietly, recalling the sight of the bloated Presley just six months before his death. "We both cried." Martindale admits to being "pleasantly surprised" by the resurgence in game shows, and is busy taking meetings at networks that are only too ready to tap into his expertise. "I love working," he writes in his bio. "It's still an interesting world to me. What keeps me going and what keeps me interested is that ever-present but elusive carrot out there."