Of all of the country music superstars to emerge during the 1980s, Reba McEntire has carved out an enduring place in the pop mainstream, becoming as well known for her acting as she is for music. So great was her popularity, she entered the rarefied air of stars who would be identified by only their first name, joining the ranks of Dolly, Tammy, Merle, and Madonna. McEntire worked for this crossover success just as hard as she worked for her place within the country music firmament. It took her six years of touring and recording before she scored her first number one hit with 1982's "Can't Even Get the Blues," but she gained momentum when she signed with MCA Records in the mid-'80s. McEntire pushed her label to allow her to join the emerging new traditionalist movement with 1984's My Kind of Country, a shift in direction that ...
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