Author Traces McEntire's Life
By Staff Reports
Mar 1, 1992
Reba McEntire: Country Music's Queen
By Don Cusic
(St. Martin's, $10.95)
Whether or not country music whets an appetite, Don Cusic's
biography of Reba Nell McEntire is a compelling report on
the enchanted life of an Oklahoma-born superstar.
Cusic is instructive about Reba, Oklahoma, country music
and the elements - luck, determination and talent - that
crafted a legend.
Reba was born in McAlester into a rodeo family; loosened
her vocal cords on gospel music; hurled from Oklahoma into
fame, and rode raw determination and talent into the lucrative
world of country music among "the five most significant
and influential country acts to emerge in the 1980s."
Cusic, a relaxed college professor who has written books
about Randy Travis and Sandi Patti, probes the McEntire's
family tree with a regaling tale of eccentric "Pap," great-grandfather
who wore a rope necktie.
Pulsating from music industry data to observations that
cowboys most feared "a decent woman and being set afoot,"
Cusic sets a vivid scene for the rise of Reba McEntire with
a well illustrated Oklahoma saga that notes the superstar
"can still ride a mean barrel race."
While Cusic reports Reba's first paid performance shared
with her brother earned a nickel, the book omits other economic
accruals by Miss McEntyre. It discusses both of her marriages
and probes her first divorce. It ably communicates why Reba
McEntire is country music's queen.
Carter, Claremore, is the author of "I Never Met a Man
I Didn't Like: The Life and Writings of Will Rogers."