Reba McEntire’s ‘Living and Learning’ Podcast Returns to Spotify with a Very Special Guest — Her Boyfriend, Rex Linn
“We’re coming out swinging with these first few episodes, so I hope y’all are ready,” she says.
Reba McEntire, Rex Linn; Photo by Jamie Schramm, CMA
The second season of Reba McEntire’s podcast, Living and Learning with Reba McEntire, just launched on Spotify. Just as she did in the first season, which was released in 2020, McEntire will continue to tell her life stories throughout the series, with the help of some of her fellow famous friends. Today’s premiere episode features a special guest, McEntire’s boyfriend, “Sugar Tot” Rex Linn, who joined her to discuss their love story, their careers and making it through even the most strenuous days apart.
During their conversation, Linn revealed how the deaths of their mothers brought him and McEntire closer together, as they were able to feel and understand each other’s pain during the difficult time of losing a loved one. This experience has led them to having the strong bond they have with their relationship today.
“It was later on that I was texting you about MaMa,” said McEntire. “We had just found out that she has bladder cancer and you said, ‘you just feel free to call me anytime you want to talk,’ and I just quit texting and we’ve been talking ever since.”
“Let me just add to that,” Linn began. “In 1998, my mom passed away and the day that we buried her we went back to mom’s house..my sister walks up and says, ‘you got a phone call’ and I said, ‘now, right now?’ And she said, ‘I think you probably want to take this.’ So I went back in my old bedroom that I grew up in, sat on the bed and it was Reba. And she said ‘I understand what you’re going through today. I just wanted to talk to you.’ We talked for about 25 minutes and I never forgot it. It was amazing and it was uplifting. It was really special and little did I know 20 years later, 21 years later, I’d be doing the same thing with her.. But I never forgot that. And that’s why I said to you, ‘if you ever want to talk just give me a call.’”
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The couple also mentioned their sweet solution to connect with each other, which they called, “coffee camp.” This virtual conversation would take place on the mornings when they were not able to be together in the same place. Living in two different states last year made it difficult for McEntire and Linn to bond physically, but they found creative ways to make the best out of a hard situation.
“It was a very special relationship, us getting to know each other without any physical aspect to it at all,” explained McEntire. “We’d talk in the morning, we started ‘Coffee Camp’ while I was staying in Oklahoma… We haven’t missed a ‘Coffee Camp’ since March 16th.”
“When she says we haven’t missed a ‘Coffee Camp,’ we have never missed a ‘Coffee Camp’ since we started,” Linn added. “I was in California, she was in Tennessee and sometimes my ‘Coffee Camp’ started at three a.m. but man I have never missed one, I don’t wanna miss one.”
In addition to their phone conversations, Linn it took one step further when he decided to start sending McEntire unique meals from all over the country because, “I’m a foodie and you’re a foodie,” Linn explained. When asked which dish ended up being her favorite, McEntire responded, “Well the first one you sent was the pecan pie..we were flabbergasted cause that was such a good pecan pie.. I kept the box it came in and everything, your note. We were thrilled to death for the UPS or federal express or any kind of delivery person driving up the hill. Marc would ask me that morning ‘Is Rex sending anything?’ So it was pecan pie, it was lobster rolls, it was McConnell’s ice cream from California. So which was my favorite, they were all great but what was prolonged, we got to have it more often, was the McConnell’s ice cream.”
After discussing how they continue to show their love for each other, McEntire learned something new about her partner and his career as an actor.
“Everyone says ‘I bet John Wayne was a big influence’ on me.. John Wayne was an influence on me later on but Clayton Moore and ‘The Lone Ranger’ I mean I knew I wasn’t going to be good enough to be a cowboy… And then I saw ‘The Lone Ranger’. I saw Clayton Moore and he was on a white horse and he had a mask on and I thought that was the coolest thing ever,” Linn stated.
“Well, eventually I start asking mom and dad ‘where is he..what ranch does he work on,” he continued. “She said ‘well he’s in a movie studio and I’m thinking ‘well I want to be one of those’ and then I saw the ‘Wolfman’ I saw Lon Chaney Jr. play the Wolf Man that scared me. And I said ‘where is the Wolf Man’ and they said ‘that’s an actor and he’s putting on a wolf man mask’ and I thought, what I could at 5 or 7 years old, ‘that’s gotta be the greatest job in all the world’ so that’s how I started.”
“I didn’t know that!” McEntire exclaimed.
In the second episode of season two, McEntire is joined by her fellow country music icon and friend, Trisha Yearwood. Together, they reminisce on seeing each other for the first time in a record shop, when Yearwood went to visit McEntire for a meet and greet. From there on, these powerful women have grown together, watching each other’s career evolve in country music.
Following Yearwood, McEntire’s podcast will feature the musical trio, Lady A. Each week, these artists will dive into various topics through engaging conversations with McEntire as host.
During the first set of episodes, McEntire, alongside co-host and former “Reba” co-star, Melissa Peterman, was joined by celebrity guests Dolly Parton, Jane Fonda, Thomas Rhett, Lauren Akins, Glennon Doyle, and more.
“I had such a great time recording the first season, mainly because I got to have conversations with so many wonderful people,” McEntire told Country Now. “Having the opportunity to come back for round two made me very excited to get behind the mic again! I can’t wait to get back to living, learning and building on the success of season one. We’re coming out swinging with these first few episodes, so I hope y’all are ready!”
New episodes of Living and Learning with Reba McEntire will drop every Monday on Spotify.
Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.