LeAnn Rimes began her career at the age of 13 with her classic country-inspired “Blue,” released in 1996. This song put the young vocalist on the map, and she went on to make a great impact on the country music of the 1990s and 2000s. Rimes has released various new albums in the past few years, and she recently announced that her next album, god’s work, will be released on September 16. In honor of Rimes’ new music, here’s a look back at 10+ of her best songs.
- “Blue” — from Blue
Rimes’ song “Blue” from the album of the same name is the tune that started it all for the then-13-year-old country starlet. The song takes on a classic country flair reminiscent of Patsy Cline’s hits, and that’s because it was originally released in 1958 by songwriter, artist and disc jockey, Bill Mack. Rimes revived the song when she released it in 1996, and it became a Top 10 hit. The song also won its fair share of awards and accolades, earning Grammy awards for Best Country Song and Best Female Country Vocal Performance, as well as an Academy of Country Music award for Song of the Year,a CMA nomination for Song of the Year and a Country Radio Music Awards nomination for Song of the Year.
2. “One Way Ticket (Because I Can)” — from Blue
After the success of “Blue,” Rimes released her third single, “One Way Ticket (Because I Can),” which also made waves for the singer. In this song, a young Rimes sings about exploring an open world full of possibilities. The song’s bouncy, ‘90s-country production accompanies Rimes’ voice as she comments on traveling and finding love. “One Way Ticket (Because I Can)” became Rimes’ first — and to date, only — No. 1 hit.
3. “How Do I Live” — from You Light Up My Life: Inspirational Songs
While her first few singles brought Rimes success, the teenage singer would soon reach much higher career accolades with upcoming releases. One of those undeniably successful songs is “How Do I Live,” released by Rimes in 1997. Rimes was originally called on by Diane Warren to record the song for the Con Air movie soundtrack. Once she recorded it, the movie producers decided the version was too pop sounding and the subject matter of the tune was too mature for 14-year-old Rimes to release. The movie directors opted to go with Trisha Yearwood’s version, but Rimes’ rendition was still released as a radio single. The song became a crossover hit, peaking at No. 2 on the US charts, and it has been certified 3x Platinum.
4. “You Light Up My Life” — from You Light Up My Life: Inspirational Songs
Rimes continued her successful career by releasing “You Light Up My Life,” the title track of her 1997 album. In this sweet song, which could be interpreted to be about a love interest or a loved one of any kind, Rimes sings about a person who brings a certain kind of light into her life. The sweeping ballad served to show off Rimes’ impressive range, and although it wasn’t a radio hit, it remains one of Rimes’ most classic tunes.
5. “I Need You” — from Jesus: Music From and Inspired by the Epic Mini-Series
LeAnn Rimes returned to pop crossover success in 2000 with the release of “I Need You.” Recorded for the mini-series, Jesus, this song is another soaring ballad that finds Rimes stretching her range and singing passionate lyrics. “I need you like water, like breath, like rain / I need you like mercy from heaven’s gate,” she sings in the chorus. The tune became another worldwide hit for Rimes, peaking at No. 11 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart.
6. “Can’t Fight The Moonlight” — from Coyote Ugly soundtrack
Rimes’ career reached even higher heights after she released “Can’t Fight The Moonlight” in 2000. Recorded for the motion picture, Coyote Ugly, this early 2000s pop song became a hit on pop radio in the US and in various European countries. It peaked at No. 11 on the US Billboard Hot 100 Chart and it has been certified 3x Platinum in Australia.
7. “Nothing ‘Bout Love Makes Sense”— from This Woman
After her success in the pop music world, LeAnn Rimes returned to her country roots towards the middle of the first decade of the 2000s. A standout tune from this era is “Nothing ‘Bout Love Makes Sense,” which landed at No. 5 on the US country charts. In this playful tune released in 2004, Rimes sings of the high points and the pitfalls of love, as she tries to figure out the world of love herself. With its twangy banjo and fiddle instrumentation, the tune marked a new, ultra-country chapter for Rimes.
8. “Probably Wouldn’t Be This Way” — from This Woman
In 2005, Rimes traded her upbeat, flirty songs for a tune with a more somber message. In “Probably Wouldn’t Be This Way,” Rimes sings from the perspective of someone who has experienced a great loss, which is waking havoc on the person’s daily life. Albeit sad, the song presents a realistic perspective on human emotion. “Probably Wouldn’t Be This Way” landed at No. 3 on the charts.
9. “Something’s Gotta Give” — from This Woman
Rimes made her way back to fun country love songs later in 2005 with “Something’s Gotta Give.” In this lively tune, Rimes tells the story of a woman pondering when she’ll meet the love of her life, rationalizing that “Something’s Gotta Give,” and she’s bound to find true love soon. This song also stayed clearly within the lines of country music, and it became a No. 2 hit for the singer.
10. “Nothin’ Better To Do” — from Family
Rimes’ final single to chart within the Top 15 came in 2007 with “Nothin’ Better To Do.” This song serves as an ode to the troublemaking days of youth, and it became a big hit for Rimes. In addition to reaching No. 15 on the country airplay chart, the song crossed over to the Adult Contemporary and Dance Club charts, landing at No. 16 and No. 8, respectively. The song was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance.