Reba Celebrates Biggest Hit of Her Career
A celebration of friendship and career achievement spread a warmth throughout Reba McEntire's Starstruck Entertainment building Monday, despite Nashville's frigid cold temperatures outside. The singer welcomed songwriters Steve Diamond and Marv Green, who penned 'Consider Me Gone,' to her offices, as performing rights organizations ASCAP and BMI co-hosted the multiple-week number one party for the trio.
'Consider Me Gone' is Reba's biggest hit of her 30-plus year career. It climbed to No. 1 on the country singles charts for Billboard and Country Airplay and remained there for four weeks. Only three other women in country music -- Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood and Gretchen Wilson -- have had a single remain at the top for more than three weeks in the past decade.
"Country music has been very good to me," Reba told the crowd gathered for the party in the lobby of her office building on Nashville's Music Row. "It has entertained me as long as I can remember, from the Grand Ole Opry to my local radio station when I was growing up in Atoka, Okla."
Friendship and excitement for a renewed career seemed to be the themes of the evening, as Reba said several times how much fun she was having and how excited she was about her revamped career. "It's really hard to put it into words how much it means to me to have a career chart topping song after being in the business for 34 years," Reba told The Boot. "It's pretty overwhelming and I give totally credit to the songwriters, radio, the Valory Music Company and my fans."
Songwriter Steve Diamond told The Boot that he was surprised to hear that this was Reba's first four-week No. 1 hit. "That is such an amazing thing and hard for me to believe. Because she's such an iconic artist, I just assumed that many of her hits would have spent multiple weeks at No. 1. But that was just bonus icing on the cake to have that happen."
This is the third Reba cut for Steve, who also had pop artist Orinthea's hit single 'According to You,' as well as cuts by Eric Clapton, Lonestar and Hannah Montana (Miley Cyrus). "I've been fortunate to have her record three of my songs, it was an incredible fit. The first time I heard her recording of the song, I realized that she got it, she felt it, she owned it."
Reba went on to say that she is still doing the same thing she was doing when she came to town, newly discovered by singer and poet Red Steagall and recording her first songs for Mercury Records. "I get up and sing and I have a great time, and I thank the Lord for a great job. A lot of it has to do with the timing, being with the right people at the right time. It's taken a lot of hard work, dedication and great ideas to get the music out there. I'm just ecstatic and thrilled that it has all happened like it has."
The singer recalled getting her first No. 1 plaque in 1983 for 'Can't Even Get the Blues,' when she was playing at Billy Bob's Texas in Forth Worth. "Two people from my record label surprised me onstage to give me a plaque that was about this big," she remembered, indicated a size of about 11 x 14. "I still have that plaque hanging in my home office and I'll never forget receiving it." She paused a moment before adding, "Today is also a day I'll never forget."
Reba's new single, 'I Keep On Loving You,' is out this week. It is the title cut of her album, which is nearing gold status with sales of 500,000 units since it was released last August.