Reba McEntire put off releasing an album of gospel tunes for over four decades out of respect for her singer sister.
Reba is currently promoting Sing it Now: Songs of Faith & Hope (out Friday), and admits she has waited 40 years to record the tracks, so as to not step on her sibling Susie’s toes.
“My sister Susie is a gospel singer,” she explains to USA Today. “I was the country singer.”
However, don’t expect the Grammy-winning star to abandon her country roots on the album.
“All of these (songs) could be released to radio in the country market,” she says of the songs that appear on her gospel offering. “Sing It Now, There Is A God – they’re no different from Carrie Underwood doing Jesus, Take The Wheel or Randy Travis’ Three Wooden Crosses. They’re all great country songs that happen to be on my gospel album.”
Although Reba’s signature voice glows on the tracks for Sing it Now: Songs of Faith & Hope, the musician admits there is something distinctive and unprecedented about her work on this album.
“I think it was more heartfelt on these songs,” she shares. “That’s not to say a country song is not heartfelt, but this is more more spiritual, more about my relationship with God.
“This isn’t just entertainment. It’s not a country album. It’s deeper than that. It’s about changing lives. It’s a message from God. That’s why I’m here, not to be rich and famous and popular but to help people. I’m the conduit or, as I call it, the water hose. That’s what God wanted me to be when He gave me this voice: I’m supposed to stand up and give His message. If I can touch just one person, that’s worth the whole project.”