Reba Nell McEntire was born on March 28, 1955 in Kiowa, Oklahoma, the second daughter and third of four children of Clark Vincent McEntire, a professional steer roper, and Jacqueline (Smith) McEntire, a former school teacher.
Reba McEntire was the most successful female recording artist in country music in the 1980s and 1990s, during which time she scored 22 number one hits and released five gold albums, six platinum albums, two double-platinum albums, four triple-platinum albums, a quadruple-platinum album, and a quintuple-platinum album, for certified album sales of 33.5 million over the 20-year period. While she continued to sell records in healthy numbers into the 21st century, she expanded her activities as an actress in film and on the legitimate stage, and particularly on television, where she starred in a long-running situation comedy.
Perhaps even more important than McEntire’s decision to perform music in a more traditional country style was her search for material that she felt women would respond to. “Whoever’s in New England,” a single released in January 1986 just ahead of an album of the same name, was a case in point. It was a career-making song for McEntire, not least because it was promoted by her first music video. Reaching number one in May 1986, it marked a major breakthrough for her, beginning a string of chart-topping hits that didn’t begin to slow down for the next three years.
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