Reba McEntire

I'm Not That Lonely

(CD - Delta Distribution #4118)

Review by

It seems a fair bet that if one were to contact Starstruck Entertainment, Reba McEntire's company, and inquire about the artist's feelings with regard to the concert recording I'm Not That Lonely, the response would be blistering. Legal questions are beyond the scope of a mere music critic, and this disc may be technically legitimate and not an outright bootleg, but it is at the very least unauthorized. The CD sleeve notes only that the music was "recorded live at Doc Severinsen's Music Showplace, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma USA," but aural evidence suggests that it dates from the summer of 1984 when McEntire was, as she continued to be in 2002, contracted exclusively to MCA Records. How Partner Licensing GMBH got hold of the tape, which it then licensed to the British Delta Music label, is unknown. In any case, the album presents McEntire in an hour-long set, during which she sings many of her hits of the first half of the '80s, occasionally accompanied by her brother Pake McEntire and her sister Susie McEntire (aka Susie Luchsinger) for a reunion of the Singing McEntires, their teenage vocal group, notably on a version of "Daddy," a song about the siblings' father. Those are special moments, and McEntire is in good voice, even if she forgets the words to "I'm Getting Over You." But the entire show seems to have been recorded (or mixed, or mastered, who knows?) far too loud, and the sound distorts constantly. McEntire fans may be interested to hear what a live show by their favorite sounded like in a relatively small venue shortly before she rose to superstardom. No one else should bother. (The song titles and songwriting credits are littered with errors. The liner notes are equally unreliable.)

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