Reba McEntire's Thoughts On Life

This Oklahoma belle is a firecracker of wisdom, wit, and storytelling. From her daddy's lessons in hard work as a child to her Vegas performances and barrel racing triumphs, country music star and actress Reba McEntire embodies the heart and spirit of the South. She welcomed us into her Nashville studio with a big hug – honestly, we went for handshakes, and she went for the hug – and filled us with warmth, stories, and that undeniable country charm.


He said, what did you do before you started thinking. Well, I was a barrel racer. He said, a what? And I said, okay, b-a-r-r-e-l. He said, okay. [MUSIC] We'd start early in the morning, before daylight, and Peg and I would go get the horses out of a 40-acre Pasture. And then by the time we got back, daddy had breakfast, which eggs and bacon and cowboy bread and gravy. Which is absolutely my favorite breakfast. And then we'd go get, this was in the fall when we'd have to ship cattle. And so we'd be up in the hills until daylight, and about get the cattle to the pens by that time. And then momma and all us kids would pile in the car and go to school. The week before we'd have to gather pull cattle closer to the pens. And then we'd be out until dark and Payton would run his horse and then get off on the ground and take a nap. Then we'd catch up and then he'd get back on his horse and run him as fast as he could going back to the house. And then after we get through working cattle, daddy would take us up on top of the hill where the ponds were and take us swimming. And mom would call us for dinner and that's why I don't know how to cook very much at all because Suzy did the cooking with mom and I stayed outside all the time. [MUSIC] I think growing up in a very small town, I had eighteen people in my graduating class. So, you knew everybody. Everybody knew you. And they held you accountable and people are very fair in the country, in the south. Oklahoma's a great place to grow up. Everybody takes care of everybody's kids. They watch out after each other. I was always around my cousins and aunts and uncles. And so it was a family community and you didn't get away with much If anything. You feel good being a Southerner. And I've got a lot of Northern friends, too, and I love going up north. But the South is just hospitality, come on in. When you go visit people, and they say, you like something to drink? Whether it's water or ice tea or a Beyond seven. That's hospitality. And you get that in the South. [MUSIC] Everything I learned in Oklahoma helped me now. Working hard and taking direction and when people tell you to do something you do it. I don't care if daddy told me to set on my horse in that gate. When he told me to set there until he got back, you sat there until daddy got back. It's not, well I'm cold or I've got to use the bathroom. If you had to use the bathroom, you just got off your horse, used the bathroom, got back on. Will McKenzie, my director on the Reba Show, he said, one thing about you, you sure are directable. I said, my daddy made sure of that. And mom was even sweeter about it. She'd say, how about you go clean your room. That meant, go clean your room. And I told Larry Jones one time. I said, hey Larry. Do you want to Clean the bus up. And he said, no. I said, okay, let me just say it again. Larry, go clean the bus up. He said, I thought that's what you meant but you didn't say that. I said, well I was using a mommaism so it didn't work on you. He said, it will next time. [MUSIC] Everywhere I'd go, whether it was east or west, they would say something about my accent. And one time, this kid said, wow, you kept your accent. [LAUGH] I said, this accent's made me a lot of money. [LAUGH] I was never so surprised in my life first time I ever hear myself on tape. Mama had a tape player, she was a secretary at the school at Kiowa, and she brought home this reel-to-reel tape recorder and all of us kids stood around and taped ourselves and laughed and made fun of each other, but it's done all right for me. [LAUGH] Well my favorite things in Nashville to do is go to The Country Music Hall of Fame. My favorite places to eat. Union Common. I love that. Midtown Cafe. J. Alexander. I love to go down into Franklin, Franklin is a beautiful town. Lot's of history in Nashville. I use the Waze app when I go home, and it'll take me places I've never even seen in Nashville. Nashville. And so I'm getting to see more of the country side of Nashville that's still in the city, which I absolutely love. I love everything about Nashville. Lots of things to get to do. Fun stuff. [MUSIC] Vegas is a blast. People come from all over the world to see us, and it's very flattering. We're just so honored that they come to see our show, because there's so much entertainment in Vegas, and the people there at Caesar's Coliseum just treat us like family. We love it. Earlier on, I would have said I would never do Vegas, because it's one place and I'm more of a gypsy, but after doing Annie Get Your Gun for six months I really enjoy being in one place, the same dressing room, the same theater, a stage, and everything. I like that. [MUSIC] I thought when I got the music business, I'll have a record on the radio and I'll get a buzz. And then I'd be famous. And then when it didn't happen. You know, I didn't have a number one record until six or seven years after my first single was out. And so, but every step was a step up. I thought being famous was. Would be getting to go places and in a bus and get to fly airplanes more and live very comfortably for the rest of your life. Once I started making money and then I started getting to buy clothes I was buying clothes that were the most uncomfortable shoes in the [UNKNOWN] shoes. And, I went back to my tennis shoes and boots. I just couldn't take it. Success to people, is always different. But out of all of it, I like to be happy. And I've been happy poor, and I've been happy rich. I just like to keep that part consistent.
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