TODAY   |  April 08, 2014

Martina McBride: New album is ‘easy’ listening

Country superstar Martina McBride has sold more than 18 million albums, and on her newest project, “Everlasting,” she sings a collection of famous pop and soul songs. She tells Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb that she hopes her music will give people an escape in our complicated world.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> female vocalest of the year four times. now doubt martina mcbride is one of country music 's biggest stars and she is singing a new tune with a cd out today. you are going to sing for us later in the show.

>> i am.

>> good to see you again.

>> good to see you, too.

>> what made you go down this route to sing the old classics?

>> i have had this idea for a while. i love to sing. i love to sing just beautiful songs with great melodys and great lyrics. these are some of the best of those.

>> there are so many great songs out there. what was your criteria?

>> it was like a treasure hunt . i got together with my producer. he is awesome. we tried on songs for size. i always say like you can have 50 dresses on a rack that all look beautiful but when you put it on some look better than others.

>> which ones fit the best?

>> i always wanted to sing "suspicious minds" by elvis which we did earlier today. that is a really fun one to sing.

>> country, what i think about, is the only place still besides broadway that we are writing songs that are stories still. a lot of boom box stuff going on. i'm discouraged about what is happening in the world of music. i don't know how you feel about it. except for country.

>> well, i just wanted to make a record that was easy to listen to. i think the world is so complicated and music is in a weird spot right now. i just wanted to say you can put it on while you are cooking or hanging out with friends. you don't have to learn 12 new songs.

>> you are going to hit the road tonight. someone said free concert.

>> in times square at the hard rock .

>> doors open at 7:00. it is first come first serve.

>> they are going to be outside. you better play loud.

>> i can't wait. it's -- we are putting together our show but it is album release day, new york city . we just want to try on some things in front of a live audience and see what works.

>> how long will the concert be?

>> a couple of hours.

>> how are the kiddos? i can't believe you have a 19 year old.

>> freshman in college. she is doing great. i have a 16 year old, as well, who is a sophomore in high school and then an 8 year old. my 16 year old just got her drivers license.

>> are you terrified?

>> a little bit. she is a good driver but you always worry.

>> some people aren't is what you worry about.

>> what do country music fans think of this cd?

>> i hope they love it. i think that it's like when you read it in print the idea seems really different for me. when you listen to it it is really -- it's not that much different than what i have done in the past. i have done songs that have soulful aspect to them. we put songs like natural woman in our show over the years and "at last" by etta james . it is still me. i still sound like me. some of the songs were country hits.

>> you also know your roots are still in country and you are coming back. you have not made some sort of grand announcement i'm going to do r&b for the rest of my life.

>> do you still do the old ones like "this one's for the girls"?

>> yeah. this one's for the girls who have ever had a broken heart who wish