Bio: One of the leaders in contemporary country music, McBride has also won converts within more puritanical country factions for the respect she affords the roots of the music. She and her husband sold T-shirts at Garth Brooks concerts before McBride graduated to becoming his opening act. The Time Has Come, her 1992 debut album, impressed many with its cultured treatment of traditional material such as ‘Cheap Whiskey’ and ‘That’s Me’. Her breakthrough came as the result of two singles in 1993, ‘My Baby Loves Me The Way That I Am’ and the much removed ‘Independence Day’, which gave her considerable momentum on country radio. The latter single’s accompanying video also won the CMA’s Video Of The Year category in 1993. This time the subject matter was far from traditional, depicting an abused wife who takes justice into her own hands. Sales of her second album, The Way That I Am, climbed to the half million mark as a result of this exposure. She won the CMA Video Of The Year award in 1994 for ‘Independence Day’.
In 1995, RCA Records launched a major campaign to back McBride’s third album, Wild Angels, with numerous television appearances (including the CMT Showcase Artist Of The Month) and special retail promotion via the K-mart chain. Preceded by the single ‘Safe In The Arms Of Love’, Wild Angels was produced by McBride alongside Paul Worley and Ed Seay. Its composition relied heavily on the melancholy and sadness of her earlier releases, with her compassionate, third-person songs reflecting sympathetically on relationships with a series of characters. ‘Safe In The Arms Of Love’ was a country hit although for many, her revival of Delbert McClinton’s ‘Two More Bottles Of Wine’ was a stronger track. Other songs, such as ‘Born To Give My Love To You’ which addressed the birth of her daughter Delaney, were more optimistic (her baby daughter gurgles on the number 1 hit ‘Wild Angels’). In addition to the release of the album and extensive touring commitments she joined Reba McEntire, Trisha Yearwood and Linda Davis on a new version of the Michael McDonald and Patti LaBelle hit, ‘On My Own’. The opening track on 1997’s Evolution, ‘I’m Little But I’m Loud’, featured the recorded talents of a seven year old McBride, but overall the album strayed too close to slick MOR to match Wild Angels. The 1999 follow-up Emotion contained a number of excellent compositions that saw McBride moving further away from country towards the crossover audience targeted by LeAnn Rimes and Shania Twain.
In 2001 McBride reached the top of the country album charts with her Greatest Hits set. The album also included the number 1 hit single ‘Blessed’, one of four new songs included in the tracklisting. Her next album, 2003’s Martina, featured eleven odes to womanhood and a slick cover of the standard ‘Over The Rainbow’. The 2005 release Timeless comprised McBride’s versions of classic country songs including Hank Williams’ ‘You Win Again’, Ray Price’s ‘I’ll Be There’ and Kris Kristofferson’s ‘Help Me Make It Through The Night’.
Martina McBride "I'll Be Home For Christmas"
Learn more about this artist's Christmas hits by clicking on the song titles below.