Reba McEntire’s “Cathy’s Clown” Turns 25

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If you’ve heard the Everly Brothers’ original 1960 version of “Cathy’s Clown,” then you know the story — a guy’s trying to get rid of a manipulative woman after being mocked by his friends. Written by Don and Phil Everly, the tune quickly became one of the duo’s biggest pop hits.

But when Reba McEntire revived the song for a No. 1 country single in 1989, she rearranged a few things. First off, the tempo eased into a ballad, soothing over some of the hostility in the lyrics. Second, she assumed the role of narrator. In her version, she is pining for the man Cathy has taken for granted. And for some reason, everybody’s living in the Wild West.

The first thing you see in the video is a bed — and no, that’s not her apartment that happens to be conveniently located above the neighborhood bar. With an emerald gown and an elaborate black necklace, the singer descends the staircase into the saloon and sees … actor-writer Bruce Boxleitner.

Some of the camera angles and hairstyles are comical now, but you have to give credit to McEntire for being one of the first country stars to embrace music videos. Twenty-five years after releasing “Cathy’s Clown,” she is a successful actress with TV, film and Broadway credits, not to mention a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. As for the cowboy, he saddled up and rode away. I bet Cathy really chewed him out when he showed up drunk at home.

Take a look at Reba McEntire’s classic video, “Cathy’s Clown.”

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