Thursday, April 21, 2016

#AtoZChallenge R is for Reba

It's time again for the A to Z challenge. The challenge is to write posts 6 days a week (Monday through Saturday) during the month of April.  Women in Music is my chosen theme for this years challenge.

Reba McEntire is an American country music singer, songwriter and actress. She began her career in the music industry as a high school student singing in the Kiowa High School band, on local radio shows with her siblings, and at rodeos. While a sophomore in college, she performed the National Anthem at the National Rodeo in Oklahoma City and caught the attention of country artist Red Steagall who brought her to Nashville, Tennessee. She signed a contract with Mercury Records a year later in 1975. She released her first solo album in 1977 and released five additional studio albums under the label until 1983.

Signing with MCA Nashville Records, McEntire took creative control over her second MCA album, My Kind of Country (1984), which had a more traditional country sound and produced two number one singles: "How Blue" and "Somebody Should Leave". The album brought her breakthrough success, bringing her a series of successful albums and number one singles in the 1980s and 1990s. McEntire has since released 26 studio albums, acquired 40 number one singles, 14 number one albums, and 28 albums have been certified gold, platinum or multi-platinum in sales by the Recording Industry Association of America. She has sometimes been referred to as "The Queen of Country". and she is one of the best-selling artists of all time, having sold more than 85 million records worldwide.

In the early 1990s, McEntire branched into film starting with 1990's Tremors. She has since starred in the Broadway revival of Annie Get Your Gun and in her television sitcom, Reba (2001–07) for which she was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series–Musical or Comedy.

While on tour for her 1990 album, McEntire lost eight members of her band; (Chris Austin, Kirk Cappello, Joey Cigainero, Paula Kaye Evans, Jim Hammon, Terry Jackson, Anthony Saputo, and Michael Thomas), plus pilot Donald Holmes and co-pilot Chris Hollinger, when their charter jet plane crashed near San Diego, California in the early morning of March 16, 1991. The accident occurred after McEntire's private performance for IBM executives the night before. After reaching an altitude of about 3,572 feet (1,089 m) above sea level, the aircraft crashed on the side of Otay Mountain, located ten miles east of the airport, while the second plane (carrying her other band members) did not crash. The accident was believed to have occurred due to poor visibility near the mountain, which was not considered "prohibitive" for flying. The news was reported nearly immediately to McEntire and her husband, who were sleeping at a nearby hotel.

McEntire dedicated her sixteenth album, For My Broken Heart, to her deceased road band. Released in October 1991, it contained songs of sorrow and lost love about "all measure of suffering," according to Alanna Nash of Entertainment Weekly. Nash reported that McEntire "still hits her stride with the more traditional songs of emotional turmoil, above all combining a spectacular vocal performance with a terrific song on 'Buying Her Roses,' a wife's head-spinning discovery of her husband's other woman." The release peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, while also reaching No. 13 on the Billboard 200, and eventually sold four million copies. Its title track became McEntire's sixteenth number-one, followed by "Is There Life Out There", which also reached No. 1 on the Billboard country music chart. The third single, "The Greatest Man I Never Knew," peaked in the Top 5 and her cover of Vicki Lawrence's "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia" reached No. 12. "If I Had Only Known," a cut from this album, was later included in the soundtrack to the 1994 film 8 Seconds.

What does tomorrow bring?

2016 A to Z challenge! 
Who will represent the letter S?