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No. 4: Reba McEntire: Country’s Most Powerful Women of All Time

Reba McEntire‘s career spoke for itself when it came time to decide country music’s most powerful women. Known simply as Reba for years now, the singer is a country music icon whose influence is hard to measure because it’s still ongoing.

McEntire launched her recording career in 1976, but it was actually slow going for her at first as she was being made to record material that didn’t suit her. It wasn’t until she signed with MCA in 1984 and gained more control of her music that McEntire began the dizzying run of hit singles that would define her career, which are too many to list.

McEntire’s biggest hits include “Somebody Should Leave,” “Whoever’s in New England,” “The Last One to Know,” “Somebody,” “Consider Me Gone” and “Turn on the Radio,” but that’s just a tiny handful of the 56 Top 10 singles she’s scored in her 40-year-plus career, making her the female country artist who has scored the largest number of both Top 10 hits and No. 1 singles. McEntire has scored 32 solo No. 1 hits across four different decades beginning in the 1980s.

McEntire is also one of the most consistently awarded country artists of any generation. She’s scored the second most wins for the Academy of Country Music’s Top Female Vocalist, with seven career wins. McEntire holds the record for the American Music Awards’ Favorite Country Female Artist with 12, and was also the first singer to win CMA Female Vocalist of the Year four consecutive times. She holds the record for the most CMA Award nominations for a female artist with 50, as well as the most ACM Awards nominations for a female artist with 47. She’s also one of the best-selling female artists of all time across genres, selling 85 million records worldwide.

On top of her success in country music, McEntire has branched out into acting in a long list of movies and was nominated for a Golden Globe for her beloved TV series, Reba. She’s also conquered Broadway and written a best-selling book, and her influence reaches far outside of country music. But despite branching out many times, McEntire remains steadfastly country, and she’s a mainstay on the list of the most powerful country music women of all time, with no signs of slowing down any time soon.

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