As the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum gets set for the launch of Reba McEntire: All The Women I Am this week, we thought you might enjoy this look back at the 10 biggest Billboard chart hits of McEntire’s long and illustrious career — ranked by overall chart performance and based on chart longevity and peak position.
It’s an interesting mix of her most recent hits and some of her all time classics….
1. Consider Me Gone
The second release for Reba as a member of The Valory Music Co. roster, this record became her first chart-topper in over five years — also setting a milestone for the most time at the top of the charts of her career. Hitting the pinnacle of the Billboard list on January 2, 2010, the single spent a total of four weeks on top of the country music world.
2. If You See Him / If You See Her
Reba was touring with Brooks & Dunn, so it only made sense for the two acts to record a song together. Entering the chart in May of 1998, the song quickly became a blockbuster for both acts – serving as the title for both of their current projects at that time. A decade later, they revived their partnership for “Cowgirls Don’t Cry,” which peaked at number two.
3. Is There Life Out There
One song that has served as an inspiration to many of McEntire’s fans became her sixteenth number one hit on March 28, 1992 — which just so happened to be her thirty-seventh birthday. The video showed Reba as a devoted mother and wife (to Huey Lewis) who had made the decision to return to school. McEntire has said in many interviews since that she has heard many a story about fans deciding to do the same after seeing the video.
4. For My Broken Heart
Liz Hengber – who will take part in a songwriter’s discussion along with Tommy Lee James on Saturday at the Hall during All The Women I Am’s opening weekend, wrote this tender heartbreak ballad that served as the title cut of her 1991 MCA release that was her first since the March airplane crash that took the lives of eight members of her band and crew, as well as two pilots.
5. The Heart Won’t Lie
The combination of McEntire and Vince Gill had worked well once before as Reba guested on his 1990 hit “Oklahoma Swing.” This time, they slowed down the tempo and the resulting factor was a number one record that was co-penned by 80s hit-maker Kim Carnes.
McEntire’s final number one for MCA Nashville came with this hopeful love ballad that provided her with her longest-tenured record on the charts — spending eight months on the list. Credit the label for staying the course. It entered the charts on January 17, 2004 – and peaked at the top seven months later in August.
7. Turn On The Radio
The first single from All The Women I Am, McEntire rang up her twenty-fourth number one hit the first week of 2011 — leaving her one behind Dolly Parton for the top position among female vocalists on the Billboad charts.
8. Whoever’s In New England
She had hit number one four times before “Whoever’s In New England,” but this 1986 classic proved to be one of the most important records in her career. It helped to spread country music’s popularity in the northeast, and the video – her first – helped to land her music in places where it had never been before. The song was also the title track of her first Gold disc. She has had twenty-six gold or platinum albums since.
9. How Blue
After being a part of the Mercury roster for seven years, McEntire made the switch to MCA in 1984. Her first set, Just A Little Love, contained the top five title track, but it was her second effort for the label, My Kind Of Country, that established her as one of the top female vocalists in the format. The back-to-basics traditional style embodied on cuts like “Somebody Should Leave” and this track won her many a fan. It was the first single to top the charts after her win as Female Vocalist of the Year at the CMA Awards – the first of four she would win.
10. What Am I Gonna Do About You
The title track and lead single from her 1986 album, the success of song followed closely on the heels of her win as CMA Entertainer of the Year that fall. In winning the award, she became the first female performer to win the top prize in five years – and fourth overall. The video was notable for the appearance of actor David Keith as McEntire’s love interest.