Reba McEntire confounds critics. She keeps oscillating between traditional and pop country. It irritates music reviewers to no end. They want her to stay with traditional country. While she befuddles the Nashville intelligentsia, she consistently endears herself to fans and other singers. After all, she’s not called the “Queen of Country Music” for nothing.
McEntire’s first album dropped in 1977. Since then she’s notched 40 number one singles and 14 number one albums. She’s sold more than 80 million records and countless Reba McEntire tickets. She’s won two Grammy Awards, twelve Academy of Country Music Awards, and seven Country Music Association Awards.
McEntire’s father and grandfather were champion steer ropers. She grew up attending rodeos. On the way home, she’d learned songs from her mother and sing with her sisters. In 1974, McEntire sang the National Anthem at a rodeo in Oklahoma City. Country music artist Red Steagall heard McEntire’s rendition and offered to get her career off the ground. McEntire moved to Nashville and the following year she had a recording contract.
From 1980 to 1984, McEntire released five albums and a bunch of singles. Some of those releases were successful, some were failures, but most fell somewhere in between. She was singing so ngs that were more pop than country and she didn’t like it. After the release of Just a Little Love in April of 1984, McEntire took creative control of her music. The result was My Kind of Country. The album, which heard McEntire singing more traditional country music, was treasured by critics. It peaked at number 13 on the country album chart and earned McEntire her first gold record.
Since My Kind of Country, McEntire has been on fire. In the 1990s, she released eight albums. They were all certified platinum or better. Her legendary success continued into the 21st century where she scored two number one albums on the Billboard 200 and two platinum certifications.
McEntire has also done some acting. Highlights of her resume include the 1990 movie Tremors and two of her own sitcoms. Reba aired on The WB and The CW from 2001 to 2007. Then she had her own show on ABC called Malibu Country. The program was on the schedule for the 2012-2013 television season.