Reba McEntire is one of the most successful country singers whose albums are both in the country charts and in the pop charts represented. She was born on March 28, 1955 in McAlester, Oklahoma. She grew up with two sisters and a brother on their parents' farm.
Father Clark McEntire was a successful rodeo rider who won the World Champion Steer Roper three times. Mother Jaqueline Smith McEntire was a teacher and would have liked to become a country singer herself. She taught her children singing and harmony.
Reba founded the "Kiowa High School Cowboy Band" with her siblings in 1969 and sold 1000 records two years later from her local hit “The Ballad of John McEntire”.
In addition to school and band, she also followed in the footsteps of her father and also took part in rodeo competitions. On 10 December 1974, the rodeo finals in Oklahoma City was broadcast by cable television, where Reba had the honor to sing the American national anthem. Singer and songwriter Red Steagall heard her and was very impressed by her voice. So he invited her to Nashville to produce a demo tape with her.
Barely a year later, in 1975, Reba McEntire won a recording contract with Mercury Records and produced her first single titled "I Don't Want to Be a One Night Stand." In May 1976, she placed 88th in Billboard Country Charts proved. That same year, she married Charles Battles, who also became her manager; and she completed her studies at Southeastern Oklahoma State University as a teacher.
In the following years, several singles followed, their debut album "Reba", the first appearance in the Grand Ole Opry, the first top ten hit "You Lift Me Up To Heaven" and finally their first number one hit "Can' t Even Get the Blues ". She starred in the opening act of the Statler Brothers and collaborated with artists such as Ronnie Milsap, Mickey Gilley and Conway Twitty.
When she joined MCA Records in October 1983, she became one of the most popular artists of the decade. She produced 24 singles, which she placed in the top ten, as well as 14 number 1 titles.
In 1987, she divorced her husband and later married Road Manager and Steel guitarist Narvel Blackstock, with whom she had a son born in 1990.
Her musical success continued and in 2004 she again had a number 1 hit with "Somebody". In 2007, she took 2nd place in the charts with a duet with Kelly Clarkson "Because of You" and for the first time in her long career, the accompanying album "Reba: Duets" climbed to # 1 on the Billboard 200 in the first week Categories Pop and Country Albums Charts! Likewise the album "Keep On Loving You" from the year 2009 was on the first place of both charts.
Since 2015, you can cheer her on stage in Las Vegas, where she performs together with the country duo "Brooks & Dunn" and the show "Together" at Ceasars Palace.
In 2018, Reba was among the winners of the Grammy Awards: she received the award in the Roots Gospel category for the “Sing It Now: Songs of Faith & Hope” album.
Since 1989, the singer can also be admired as an actress in film and television. She made her film debut in "Tremors - The Land of Rocket Worms" to which she also contributed the soundtrack "Why Not Tonight?". She also had her own comedy series: "Reba", which was broadcast occasionally in Germany.
Text: Nadja von der Hocht
Photo: Gage Skidmore