On This Day: Martina McBride Earns First No. 1 Hit with ‘Wild Angels’ in 1996

by Atlanta Northcutt
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Martina McBride is a country legend in her own right, and as a female singer in the genre, she is a positive idol for all female singers who hope to excel in this field.

The dark-haired beauty is now a household name, but that wasn’t always the case 25 years ago. Her talents were finally acknowledged on March 2, 1996, after already releasing 10 singles prior to “Wild Angels.”

Celebrating Martina McBride’s “Wild Angels”

We honor the strong female with a powerhouse voice on the 25th anniversary of her song “Wild Angels” hitting No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Singles and Tracks charts, confirming her future success.

McBride was already successful upon the release of her two previous albums. Several singles became radio hits, with these including “The Way I Am,” “Independence Day,” and “Life #9.”

Her third album stopped everyone in their tracks. The woman who others in the industry knew was an exceptional singer, but they were still hesitant to see how long she would last in a genre that’s mostly controlled by men. How long would she be able to stretch her legs, and come out with singles that caught everyone’s attention?

In 1995, Martina McBride released her album Wild Angels. The title track of the record was first introduced to the world as a single in November of that year.

Reaching No. 1 on the Country Charts

“Wild Angels” is THE song that gained her undeniable fame. It took off and reached the coveted spot of No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Singles and Tracks charts four months later. It also reached No. 5 on Canada’s Country Track chart.

The song was co-written by Matraca Berg, along with Gary Harrison and Harry Stinson. McBride says she first began working on the song with Stinson.

“Gary gave me an epiphany with that song,” says one of the song’s co-writers, Matraca Berg. “Get them a good, kick-a– chorus, and you can write whatever you want to in the verses.”

The Singer Has A Personal Connection With The Hit Song

Martina McBride discovered something special through that experience. Her daughter, who was born in 1994, can be heard laughing in the background of the song, which was a special moment for the singer.

“I don’t know what we were smoking that day, but it was a very lofty, kind of poetic, lyric,” she said during an interview with The Boot. “I heard it [recently] and thought, ‘What was I thinking?'”

McBride is right about the poetry in the lyrics. The writing is truly beautiful. Through its simplicity, the emotions are strongly felt without having to sort through long, heavy, and deeper meanings.

Martina McBride Continues On With A Successful Career

After her No. 1 success, Martina McBride didn’t quit. Listeners and those in the industry began to really take notice. However, her next three singles weren’t nearly as popular as “Wild Angels” and the country radios weren’t too interested in playing them. Her next album came out strong, though. The record entitled Evolution granted her two more No. 1 hits. “A Broken Wing” and “Wrong Again” brought McBride’s name and talents back to the forefront of people’s minds, and she continued to release more and more popular singles.

Martina’s Wild Angels record received a nomination for CMA Album of the Year. McBride continued to place the song on albums compiled of her greatest hits, including Greatest Hits in 2001, Hits and More in 2012, and others.

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