LeAnn Rimes Celebrates 25-Year Anniversary of Debut Album ‘Blue’: ‘Here’s to the Next 25’

by Madison Miller
Photo by: Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

Country-pop sensation, LeAnn Rimes, is celebrating an incredibly meaningful milestone in her career as a best-selling artist.

This year is the 25-year anniversary of her breakthrough debut album, “Blue.” The 11-song album came out in 1996 and quickly claimed the No. 1 spot on the Top Country Albums chart and is multi-platinum.

‘Blue’ 25-Year Anniversary

Her lead single that shares the album’s name is what got her national attention. It became a Top 10 hit, as many people compared her to Patsy Cline, a widely influential country artist that is considered one of the first to successfully intersect pop and country music.

LeAnn Rimes had a heartfelt reaction to the 25-year anniversary on her Instagram account. She wrote, “25 years since my first album was released. 25 years of writing, recording, performing. 25 years of you, my incredibly dedicated LovE.”

She accompanied it with scenes from the music video for “Blue.” It features the “Talk to Me” singer floating by on a large pool float, wearing all-white clothes and chunky white sunglasses, like a scene out of “Legally Blonde.” The video also has shots of her standing in the studio.

“I have SO much planned to celebrate reaching this silver anniversary milestone. Music, unreleased videos, live dates… and for those of you requesting vinyl (I see you) something very special will be announced soon,” Rimes also wrote. From the sound of it, Rimes is ready for a major resurgence in the music world.

Unlike other artists, LeAnn Rimes was only 13 when she released that debut album. However, she had been performing on stages since she was 5, so performing was second nature at this point. Throughout her childhood, she landed spots in musical theater and TV productions and even performed at some Dallas Cowboys football games.

LeAnn Rimes Releases Album at 13

The song “Blue” was originally written and released by Bill Mack in the 1950s. Before being discovered by Mack, Rimes had won a week of “Star Search” and released three independent albums with her father, Wilbur Rimes.

“[Mack] sent us the demo of ‘Blue,’ and my dad threw it in the trash and didn’t let me hear it,” Rimes shares with Bannen. However, she recalls, when her dad left the house, “I went and dug it out of the trash, and I listened to it. Obviously I understand why my dad threw it away, because the demo was awful. It didn’t sound anything like the song that you hear now, but because of my defiance, I’m like, ‘I’m going to show my dad that this song’s great. By the time he got back, I’d put that little yodel thing in there. Then he was like, ‘Oh, it’s like a different song,'” Rimes said to Kelleigh Bannen for an “Essential Albums” special on Apple Music Hits.

Her song “Blue” got her critically acclaimed quickly. She received a Best Female Country Vocal Performance Grammy Award in 1997 as well as the Grammy for Best Country Song. She also won the Grammy’s Best New Artist award. This was a milestone for both Rimes and the Grammys. She became the youngest person to win a Grammy and the first country artist to win a Best New Artist award.