Reba McEntire is a pro’s pro in the world of country music and she hit her mark just right at Super Bowl LVIII.
McEntire sang the Star-Spangled Banner in front of a sold-out crowd at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. Throw in 100-million-plus viewers tuning into the game on CBS and all eyes were on Ms. Reba.
She stood at the edge of a platform set up for her and flag bearers. At times, it looked like McEntire was pointing out toward an American flag on the playing field. She appeared to do it to emphasize the words “and our flag was still there” in the lyrics.
Her rendition of the National Anthem will go up there with some of the most powerful ones. Of course, it will be hard for anyone to outdo Whitney Houston’s version. That soaring version from Houston matched a nation’s desire to have a soaring spirit once again. Then again, some people also pointed out Chris Stapleton’s version moved them more than Reba.
Reba McEntire’s National Anthem Brings On Tears
McEntire had some people in tears. Kansas City Chiefs defensive player Chris Jones was shown with tears streaming down his face. In the CBS telecast, American armed forces on duty overseas were shown as McEntire sang. When she was done, the crowd roared their approval.
Yet the kudos were just beginning for McEntire. One fan wrote on X (formerly Twitter), “OMG!!! They don’t call her #icon for nothing. @reba Fancy never lets us down! My (heart) was pounding…she delivered! And that high note!” Another person wrote, “Reba with the National Anthem! That was awesome!” This fan said, “Reba McEntire proving why she’s a living legend. No gimmicks needed.”
While some people may know this, McEntire does have a very special connection to the National Anthem. Back in 1974, McEntire sang the song at the National Finals Rodeo in Oklahoma City. While performing, country music legend Red Steagall heard McEntire’s voice. He met up with her and, we believe, her mom as well. Steagall wanted McEntire to come make a demo in Nashville.
She agreed to do it and went to Music City, U.S.A., with her mother. McEntire tells the story that she tried getting her mother to stop at every food, drink, or souvenir stop along the way. Reba’s mom could sense something was wrong, so she talked to her daughter. Essentially, she said that if McEntire didn’t want to go through with the demo, then they could turn around and go home. But if Reba chose to do this, then her mom said that she could live out her dreams through her daughter. McEntire heard that and it clinched the deal.
And now, all these years later, McEntire has No. 1 hits and gold records to her name.
McEntire Almost Didn’t Make Super Bowl Appearance
Last Thursday, McEntire said at a press conference that she’d never sung the National Anthem at a Super Bowl game. “I am honored beyond words to be chosen to get to sing it,” McEntire said. “It means that I get to sing a very special song for all Americans, people all around the world who have really worked so hard for our freedom and to give us peace.”
Yet there seemed to be a little hesitation around her singing the song on Super Bowl Sunday. According to Do You Remember, it took a nudge from her boyfriend, Rex Linn of CSI Miami fame, for McEntire to get up there in Las Vegas. Cameras showed Linn by McEntire’s side when they arrived at the stadium.
Now that this appearance is behind her, McEntire will be on NBC regularly. She’s one of the judges on the music competition show The Voice. And somewhere on TV, reruns of her sitcom Reba probably are shown regularly.
Reba made the country music world proud with her Super Bowl performance. Fans will have another one here to put among the best (or worse, depending on their opinion) in the game’s history.
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