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McBride, Martina

Martina McBride


Singer


When she moved to Nashville in 1989, budding country singer Martina McBride had but one goal: to make the perfect traditional country album. Raised on the sounds of classic country music, McBride strove for the authenticity of time-honored country style and substance. She achieved her goal with the 1992 release of The Time Has Come. Since then, McBride expanded on the traditional roots of that first album with business savvy and intuition, and joined the top strata of talented "New Country" performers lighting country music's path into the next century.

McBride was born Martina Schiff in Medicine Lodge, Kansas, and grew up in nearby Sharon, a small town boasting a population that peaked at 200. Her father, a farmer who also owned a local cabinetry shop, was a musician at heart, and young Martina was exposed to the classics of country music at an early age. Her love of country tunes grew, along with her love of singing. She would spend hours after school singing along with the records of female vocalists like Linda Ronstadt, Pat Benatar, and Bonnie Raitt.

At the age of eight, McBride began performing onstage with the Shiffters, a country band her father had formed; she would perform with them almost every weekend until she graduated from high school. Always a good student, McBride was offered a scholarship at a nearby college after graduation, but she attended for only one semester. A career in music was where her future lay, McBride decided, and she began working with local bands and performing throughout the Wichita area.

Armed with a new last name—courtesy of a new husband, sound technician John McBride—and a demo tape, McBride made the move to Music City in 1989. When she wasn't busy waiting tables in restaurants around Nashville, she knocked on doors up and down Music Row, hoping to attract the notice of a major record label. Her husband was fortunate enough to join the sound crew for country megasuperstar Garth Brooks, a career move that proved to be fortunate for both him and his wife. John went on to become Brooks's concert production manager, and, taking time off from waitressing, McBride accompanied her husband on the road with the stage crew during national tours and helped with concert souvenir T-shirt sales.

McBride's enthusiastic, upbeat spirit caught Brooks's eye; he offered the aspiring singer an opening-act slot during his 1992 concert tour if she could obtain a recording contract. Brooks kept his word: McBride soon signed on with RCA, and during her first year under contract she opened for Brooks as well as several other top country acts. In keeping with his support of new country talent, Brooks provided vocal harmony on "Cheap Whiskey," a single from McBride's first album.

McBride's album, The Time Has Come, released by RCA in 1992, was praised by reviewers as the debut of a strong country vocalist, but the LP didn't get a lot of airplay, perhaps because its songs focused on thoughtful subjects. "The first time out, I was really concerned with being taken seriously as an artist," McBride commented in an RCA Records press release on her first effort. "I looked for songs that had a lot to say. I'm not sure that I didn't go over the line with the first album. Maybe it was too serious." Her 1993 follow-up, The Way That I Am, broke this trend for the young singer; it showed a lighter side. As she told Edward Morris of Billboard, "Somewhere along the line I realized that music has to be entertaining."

From the upbeat "Heart Trouble" to the strong up tempo rhythms that propelled "My Baby Loves Me" to Number Two on the Billboard charts, The Way That I Am reflects a more balanced choice of material. The album has a serious side, however: noted Nashville songsmith Gretchen Peters's "Independence Day," a proclamation of justice for the victims of domestic violence, is given soaring voice by McBride. Released by RCA as the album's third single, "Independence Day" received some resistance from radio stations that considered its storyline—a woman driven to arson by a violent and abusive spouse—too sobering for an entertainment-seeking radio audience. However, the accompanying video to the song won a Country Music Award.

By the time RCA released McBride's next album in 1995, her second issue had sold over one million copies. The 1995 album, Wild Angels, was a co-production by McBride, Paul Worley, and Ed Seay, of which she confided to Deborah Evans in Billboard, This album [Wild Angels] is the most reflective … thing I've ever done." The title track became her first number one hit. She joined the Grand Ole Opry that same year. Her fourth album, Evolution, appeared in 1997, and had sold in double platinum numbers by the end of 1998. Additionally, McBride won a Country Music Award for Female Vocalist of the Year and appeared in a performance for President Clinton. She issued a Christmas album, Martina McBride Christmas, that year, followed by a fifth (non-Christmas) album, called Emotion, in 1999. In addition, in 1999, she issued another Christmas album called White Christmas.

McBride is careful about the music she chooses to perform and record, and about the way her songs portray women. There are no unfortunate victims in her vocals, only strong, self-assertive women looking ahead to a future that is better than present circumstances. On The Time Has Come, the single "A Woman Knows" portrays the strength of feminine intuition. Songs like "Independence Day," "That Wasn't Me," and Pam Tillis's "Goin' to Work," all from The Way That I Am, depict women dealing with emotional issues in ways that are personally strengthening. In fact, "My Baby Loves Me" was adopted as an anthem by female country music fans because of its upbeat portrayal of a healthy relationship in which respect for the individual holds sway over surface appearance. Moreover, McBride herself has demonstrated her ability to grow, to learn, and to constantly expand as an artist. She appeared on the Country Music Association Awards in October of 2000, and with conductor Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra in a two-hour special, "Holiday at Pops! 2000."

For the Record . . .

Born Martina Mariea Schiff on July 29, 1966, in Medicine Lodge, KS; daughter of Darryl Schiff (a farmer and cabinetmaker); married John McBride (a concert production manager for country singer Garth Brooks), 1988; children: two, Emma Justine and Delaney Katherine.

Sang with the Schiffters, c. 1975-86; vocalist with local bands, Wichita, KS; moved to Nashville, TN, 1989; signed with RCA Records, 1991; released debut LP, The Time Has Come, 1992; toured with Brooks, 1992-93; made acting debut in episode of television series Baywatch; appeared on General Hospital, 1994; toured Europe, 1994; joined the Grand Ole Opry, 1995; released Wild Angels, 1995; released Evolution, 1997; releaed Emotion, 1999; released Martina, 2003.

Awards: Country Music Award for video for "Independence Day," 1994; Country Music Awards Female Vocalist of the Year, 1999; Country Music Awards Female Vocalist of the Year, 2002; Academy of Country Music Top Female Vocalist, 2002; Country Music Awards Female Vocalist of the Year, 2003; Academy of Country Music Top Female Vocalist, 2003; Academy of Country Music Humanitarian Award, 2003; Country Music Award, Best Female Vocalist, 2004.

Addresses: Record company—RCA Nashville, One Music Circle N., Nashville, TN 37203-4310. Website— Martina McBride Official Website: http://www.martina-mcbride.com.

McBride's vocal talent pairs well with her drive to be successful and her definite sense of where her career is going. "There's a perception that you just show up, put on your makeup, don't worry your pretty little head about the business, and sing," McBride told Neil Pond in Country America. "But that's changing, I think. People like Reba [McEntire], Barbra Streisand, and Madonna, who are in control of their own careers and their destinies, have been big influences on me."

Since her first touring experience with Garth Brooks, McBride has gone on the road with many other acts, including Sammy Kershaw, Kenny Rogers, Ricky Van Shelton, and Marty Stuart. In the fall of 1994, McBride took her first trip to Europe to promote her brand of American country music. For McBride, the most important aspect of a performance is connecting with the audience. "I always make sure the spotlights aren't right in my eyes [so] that I can see people's faces," she told an interviewer in Country Song Roundup. "I love it when people interact with me during a show, when they yell out stuff or when they sing along."

In 2001, her Greatest Hits album went double-platinum. She won the Country Music Awards Female Vocalist of the Year in 2002, and again in 2003. In 2002, she decided to present a Holiday Tour. "I was inspired by the Christmas productions put on at Radio City Music Hall. We go every year and just love it," she stated for the News-Sentinel. "With all the different elements in our show, we'll be able to take the audience through every aspect of the Christmas season in a magical, inspiring way." In 2003, she released Martina. She also presented the second Joy of Christmas Tour, with plans for an annual event. At the end of 2003, she was featured on an episode of CMT's Crossroads, with one of her childhood idols, Pat Benatar. They sang together each of their signature songs: Benatar's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot," and McBride's "Independence Day." "I never, ever dreamed I would be standing on a stage watching Pat Benatar sing one of my songs," Mc Bride told the Lexington Herald-Leader. "That's a bigger dream than I could imagine."

The McBrides have two daughters named Emma and Delaney. They work to schedule tours around the girl's school calendars. On the song, "This One's for the Girls," which hit number one on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Charts in 2004, the daughters are featured in the background vocals.

Selected discography

The Time Has Come, RCA, 1992.

The Way That I Am, RCA, 1993.

Wild Angels, RCA, 1995.

Evolution, RCA, 1997.

Martina McBride Christmas, RCA, 1998.

Emotion, RCA, 1999.

White Christmas, RCA, 1999.

Greatest Hits, RCA, 2001.

Martina, RCA, 2003.

Sources

Books

The Comprehensive Country Music Encyclopedia, Times Books, 1994.

Periodicals

Billboard, January 29, 1994; September 3, 1994; September 2, 1995.

Country America, June 1994.

Country Music, March/April 1994.

Country Song Roundup, March 1994.

Lexington Herald-Leader (Lexington, KY), January 28, 2004.

News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, IN), December 13, 2002.

Washington Post, October 1, 2000; December 10, 2000.

Online

Martina McBride Official Website, http://www.martina-mcbride.com (November 4, 2004.)

—Pamela L. Shelton and Sarah Parkin

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McBride, Martina

Martina McBride

Singer

For the Record

Selected discography

Sources

When she moved to Nashville in 1989, budding country singer Martina McBride had but one goal: to make the perfect traditional country album. Raised on the sounds of classic country music, McBride strove for the authenticity of time-honored country style and substance. She achieved her goal with the 1992 release of The Time Has Come. Since then, McBride has expanded on the traditional roots of that first album with business savvy and intuition, and has joined the top strata of talented New Country performers lighting country musics path into the next century.

McBride was born Martina Schiff in Medicine Lodge, Kansas, and grew up in nearby Sharon, a small town boasting a population that peaked at 200. Her father, a farmer who also owned a local cabinetry shop, was a musician at heart, and young Martina was exposed to the classics of country music at an early age. Her love of country tunes grew, along with her love of singing. She would spend hours after school singing along with the records of female vocalists like Linda Ronstadt and Bonnie Raitt.

At the age of eight, McBride began performing onstage with the Shiffters, a country band her father had formed; she would perform with them almost every weekend until she graduated from high school. Always a good student, McBride was offered a scholarship at a nearby college after graduation, but she attended for only one semester. A career in music was where her future lay, McBride decided, and she began working with local bands and performing throughout the Wichita area.

Armed with a new last namecourtesy of a new husband, sound technician John McBrideand a demo tape, McBride made the move to Music City in 1989. When she wasnt busy waiting tables in restaurants around Nashville, she knocked on doors up and down Music Row, hoping to attract the notice of a major record label. Her husband was fortunate enough to join the sound crew for country megasuperstar Garth Brooks, a career move that proved to be fortunate for both him and his wife. John went on to become Brookss concert production manager, and, taking time off from waitress-ing, McBride accompanied her husband on the road with the stage crew during national tours and helped with concert souvenir T-shirt sales.

McBrides enthusiastic, upbeat spirit caught Brookss eye; he offered the aspiring singer an opening-act slot during his 1992 concert tour if she could obtain a recording contract. Brooks kept his word: McBride soon signed on with RCA, and during her first year under contract she opened for Brooks as well as several other top country acts. In keeping with his support of

For the Record

Born July 29, 1966, in Medicine Lodge, KS; daughter of Darryl Schiff (a farmer and cabinetmaker); married John McBride (concert production manager for country singer Garth Brooks), 1988.

Sang with the Schiffters, c. 1975-86; vocalist with local bands, Wichita, KS; moved to Nashville, TN, 1989; signed with RCA Records, 1991; released debut LP, The Time Has Come, 1992; toured with Brooks, 1992-93; made acting debut in episode of television series Bay-watch; appeared on General Hospital, 1994; toured Europe, 1994.

Awards: Grammy Award nomination for country vocal, female, 1995, for Independence Day.

Addresses: Record company RCA Nashville, One Music Circle N., Nashville, TN 37203-4310.

new country talent, Brooks provided vocal harmony on Cheap Whiskey, a single from McBrides first album.

McBrides album, The Time Has Come, released by RCA in 1992, was praised by reviewers as the debut of a strong country vocalist, but the LP didnt get a lot of airplay, perhaps because its songs focused on thoughtful subjects. The first time out, I was really concerned with being taken seriously as an artist, McBride commented in an RCA Records press release on her first effort. I looked for songs that had a lotto say. Im not sure that I didnt go over the line with the first album. Maybe it was too serious. Her 1993 follow-up, The Way That I Am, broke this trend for the young singer; it showed a lighter side. As she told Edward Morris of Billboard, Somewhere along the line I realized that music has to be entertaining.

From the upbeat Heart Trouble to the strong uptempo rhythms that propelled My Baby Loves Me to Number Two on the Billboard charts, The Way That I Am reflects a more balanced choice of material. The album has a serious side, however: noted Nashville songsmith Gretchen Peterss Independence Day, a proclamation of justice for the victims of domestic violence, is given soaring voice by McBride. Released by RCA as the albums third single, Independence Day received some resistance from radio stations that considered its storylinea woman driven to arson by a violent and abusive spousetoo sobering for an entertainment-seeking radio audience.

McBride is careful about the music she chooses to perform and record, and about the way her songs portray women. There are no unfortunate victims in her vocals, only strong, self-assertive women looking ahead to a future that is better than present circumstances. On The Time Has Come the single A Woman Knows portrays the strength of feminine intuition. Songs like Independence Day, That Wasnt Me, and PamTilliss Goin to Work, all from The Way That I Am, depict women dealing with emotional issues in ways that are personally strengthening. In fact, My Baby Loves Me was adopted as an anthem by female country music fans because of its upbeat portrayal of a healthy relationship in which respect for the individual holds sway over surface appearance. And McBride, herself a woman of the 1990s, has demonstrated her ability to grow, to learn, and to constantly expand as an artist.

McBrides vocal talent pairs well with her drive to be successful and her definite sense of where her career is going. Theres a perception that you just show up, put on your makeup, dont worry your pretty little head about the business, and sing, McBride told Neil Pond in Country America. But thats changing, I think. People like Reba [McEntire], Barbra Streisand, and Madonna, who are in control of their own careers and their destinies, have been big influences on me.

Since her first touring experience with Garth Brooks, McBride has gone on the road with many other acts, including Sammy Kershaw, Kenny Rogers, Ricky Van Shelton, and Marty Stuart. In the fall of 1994, plans were underway for her first trip to Europe to promote her brand of American country music. For McBride, the most important aspect of a performance is connecting with the audience. I always make sure the spotlights arent right in my eyes [so] that I can see peoples faces, she told an interviewer in Country Song Roundup. I love itwhen people interact with me during ashow, when they yell out stuff or when they sing along.

Selected discography

The Time Has Come, RCA, 1992.

The Way That I Am (includes My Baby Loves Me and Independence Day), RCA, 1993.

Sources

Books

The Comprehensive Country Music Encyclopedia, Times Books, 1994.

Periodicals

Billboard, January 29, 1994; September 3, 1994.

Country America, June 1994.

Country Music, March/April 1994.

Country Song Roundup, March 1994.

Additional information for this profile was obtained from RCA Records publicity materials, 1994.

Pamela L. Shelton

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"McBride, Martina." Contemporary Musicians. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"McBride, Martina." Contemporary Musicians. . Retrieved July 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/mcbride-martina

McBride, Martina

MARTINA McBRIDE

Born: Martina Mariea Schiff; Sharon, Kansas, 29 July 1966

Genre: Country

Best-selling album since 1990: Emotion (1999)

Hit songs since 1990: "Independence Day," "A Broken Wing," "Blessed"


Over the course of five albums released in the 1990s, Martina McBride evolved from tough country belter to sophisticated vocalist, all the while preserving her finely honed sense of musical tradition. McBride's appeal is largely due to her excellent voice, a powerful, flexible instrument capable of tenderness and resilience in equal measure. Just as important, however, is McBride's ability to support vocal talent with genuine honesty and soulfulness. Unlike contemporary pop singers such as Celine Dion and Mariah Carey, McBride never fails to sound emotionally connected with her material, even when her arrangements seem overly polished. Like fellow country star Reba McEntire, McBride gives voice to a range of female experience, finding the common threads that unite women's lives. Her emotional depth and truthfulness have earned praise from other performers as well as African-American poet and writer Maya Angelou, who professed admiration during an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show.

As a child country performer in Kansas, McBride sang regularly with her father's band. After graduating from high school she spent years working her way into the music industry, receiving a break through the influence of country superstar Garth Brooks. First selling T-shirts for Brooks during his concerts, McBride eventually became his opening act. Although McBride's 1992 debut album, The Time Has Come, brought critical acclaim, it was the follow-up, The Way That I Am (1993), that made her a country star. A first-rate collection of ballads and tough up-tempo tunes, the album features McBride's breakthrough hit, "Independence Day," a daring, angry tale of an abused wife who retaliates by setting the house on fire. Using traditional images of American patriotism to deliver a potent message, "Independence Day" finds power through McBride's gutsy interpretation as well as trenchant, unsettling lyrics: "She tried to pretend he wasn't drinkin' / But Daddy left the proof on her cheek." Skillfully tying "proof" to both its standard meaning and a descriptive term for whiskey, "Independence Day" brought a new degree of lyrical intelligence to 1990s country music. Although McBride does not write her own material, she displays a sharp gift for song selection on the album's remaining nine tracks. At times her smooth vocal tones, assured pitch, and throaty intimacy recall 1970s pop singer Linda Ronstadt, but McBride's singing also bears a toughness that links it with tough-spirited vocalists of the past such as Kay Starr and Wanda Jackson.

McBride's successive albums, beginning with Wild Angels (1995), are more pop-oriented, lacking the rough edge that makes The Way That I Am so exciting. This new smoothness is in keeping with the hit style of 1990s country, which achieved mainstream success through plush arrangements and songs emphasizing feel-good sensitivity instead of heartache. Wild Angels and its follow-ups, Evolution (1997) and Emotion (1999), became McBride's most successful albums, crossing over to the pop charts. While slicker than her earlier releases, these albums find McBride retaining her musical integrity on a number of fine tracks. Wild Angels features a rollicking version of country and rock performer Delbert McClinton's "Two More Bottles of Wine," as well as the tender "All The Things We've Never Done," a sensitive ballad of marital regret. Evolution achieves its best moment in another study of an abusive marriage, "A Broken Wing." While lyrically less incisive than "Independence Day," "A Broken Wing" ranks as one of McBride's most soulful performances. Singing against a gospel-styled choir that never threatens to overpower the record, McBride fashions the song as a stirring anthem of liberation. On her final "fly," McBride uses vocal power and impressive breath control to communicate spiritual release.

Although McBride was nearly forced to declare bankruptcy in 1997 because of financial problems, she maintained her reputation for hard work and consistency, hosting the television program Celebrity Homes and Hide-aways and professing her domestic happiness with long-time husband John McBride. Speaking to the Calgary Sun in 1999, she attested, "I've been able to combine my career with family and I really have it all." In 2001 McBride released Greatest Hits, a fine summation of her contributions to modern country. Moving from gentle pop ballads to rocking dance numbers, McBride proves she has the strength to invest any type of material with her personal, heartfelt style.

With trademark versatility, Martina McBride bridged the gap between pop and traditional country in the 1990s, performing songs that appealed to fans of both styles. Singing with passion and soul, McBride reaches a broad range of listeners without compromising her musical roots.

SELECTIVE DISCOGRAPHY:

The Time Has Come (RCA, 1992); The Way That I Am (RCA, 1993); Wild Angels (RCA, 1995); Evolution (RCA, 1997); Emotion (RCA, 1999); White Christmas (RCA, 1999); Greatest Hits (RCA, 2001).

WEBSITE:

www.martina-mcbride.com.

david freeland

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"McBride, Martina." Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Popular Musicians Since 1990. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Jul. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"McBride, Martina." Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Popular Musicians Since 1990. . Encyclopedia.com. (July 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/mcbride-martina

"McBride, Martina." Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Popular Musicians Since 1990. . Retrieved July 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/mcbride-martina