Reba McEntire pulled double duty on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Wednesday night, performing her latest single and also teaming up with Fallon to make an audience member squirm by getting a little too up-close and personal.
McEntire delivered a hard-driving version of her bluesy new breakup tune, “Until They Don’t Love You,” the follow-up to the Top 30 hit “Going Out Like That.” Penned by three of Nashville’s A-list songwriters — Shane McAnally, Lori McKenna and Josh Osborne — the sassy number has McEntire defiantly firing off lines like “Oh you’re lookin’ so good with your bags packed/On the front steps waitin’ on a yellow cab,” before realizing what she really wants is a shot at redemption, since “sometimes you don’t love somebody until they don’t love you.” The single also incorporates some clever alphanumeric wordplay, as well as an “ooh-ooh” vocal hook straight out of Motown.
McEntire recently shocked fans by announcing the end of her marriage to manager Narvel Blackstock after 26 years, and the new single’s subject matter will no doubt fuel even more curiosity about the pair’s relationship. But the singer, who turned 60 in March, appears to have hit that milestone with a newfound sense of freedom.
“It’s really been, fifties, comfortable in your skin; sixties is just like, ‘I don’t have to please anybody,'” she recently told Rolling Stone Country. “I don’t have to make sure everybody’s happy with what I say, what I do. You kind of get the green card, and you don’t have any inhibitions. As Kix Brooks always says, ‘My give-a-shitter’s kind of gave out.’ So just go have fun. I won’t do anything I don’t want to do. I just want to love life, have fun, hang with the people I want to and the Negative Nancys, stay away. No use for you.”
McEntire also joined Fallon during the show to make a member of the studio audience extremely uncomfortable, at his own request. In a segment titled “Audience Suggestion Box,” viewer Dan Locker wrote that he wanted to have McEntire do a little “close-up serenading” — singing to him while just inches away from his face. Locker probably wasn’t expecting Fallon to duet with the country superstar, though. The pair sang a short snippet of a tune called “Just Wanna Spend This Moment,” all the while smashing their respective noses into the side of Locker’s face. McEntire upped the creepy quotient by playfully running her fingernails (coated in black polish) through Locker’s — and Fallon’s — hair.