Throughout her career, Reba McEntire has released some deeply personal songs and videos that are close to the iconic entertainer’s heart. Her video for the new single “Just Like Them Horses” pays tribute to her father Clark McEntire, the PreoRodeo Hall of Fame member who died in October 2014 at age 86.
The black-and-white clip opens on a panoramic shot of the Oklahoma landscape, with a voiceover of McEntire asking, “How do you say goodbye? How do you say goodbye to somebody who made you, raised you, taught you, disciplined you, loved you? How do you say goodbye?”
The video was filmed entirely on the McEntire family’s land in Chockie, Oklahoma, where the singer lived for 21 years. Also appearing in the video with Reba is Clark McEntire’s widow, Reba’s mother Jacqueline.
Reba performed the song, which was written by Liz Hengber and Tommy Lee James, at her father’s funeral. In a letter accompanying the video’s release, McEntire explained that Hengber had sent her a CD of “Just Like Them Horses” while she was listening to songs to consider cutting for her Love Somebody album.
“The minute I heard it, I knew I wanted it played at Daddy’s funeral,” she writes. “When my producer Tony Brown heard it, he loved it so much, that he insisted on putting it on the album. It made both — the album and Daddy’s funeral.”
McEntire adds that she knew the beautifully photographed clip depicting the emotional tune, “was going to be the most meaningful heartfelt video I’d ever do. Those old hills mean a lot to me… and they still call me back time after time.”
Noting that the song is about letting go and saying goodbye, McEntire was convinced her mother had to be included in the video. “She was and still is the glue to our family,” the singer explains. “Without a doubt, the ranch wouldn’t be what it is today without her. She was the partner, bookkeeper, Number One hired hand, cook, my best friend and as I said, the glue. So many times things could have gone south but she held us all together.”
Dedicating the video to her father, McEntire closes her letter saying, “His life was horses, cattle, land, rodeo and business. Daddy did a lot of traveling in his life. When he wasn’t rodeoing or buying cattle, he was working hard on the ranch. I took him to Europe and Australia. On one of those trips he said, ‘If I ever get home, I’m not gonna go past the mail box. My favorite line of the song is, ‘Just like them horses, now it’s time to run.’ He did. He ran all the way to heaven. Just like them horses.”
“Just Like Them Horses” is the third release from Love Somebody, which became the superstar performer’s twelfth Number One country album.