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Reba McEntire and boyfriend Rex Linn explain origin of cute ‘tot’ nicknames

She's "Tater Tot," he's "Sugar Tot."

Reba McEntire and her boyfriend, Rex Linn, are opening up about their relationship.

The country music legend, 66, and her actor beau, 64, shared details about their romance on the season two premiere of her Spotify podcast, "Living & Learning with Reba McEntire."

The pair had been pals for 30 years since meeting on the set of a movie. But in 2020, during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, their longtime friendship developed into romance — despite the fact that they were often far away from one another.

"It was a very special relationship, us getting to know each other without any physical aspect to it at all," McEntire recalled on the podcast episode, released Monday.

Reba McEntire and boyfriend Rex Linn share details about their romance in the season two premiere of the Spotify podcast "Living & Learning with Reba McEntire."
Reba McEntire and boyfriend Rex Linn share details about their romance in the season two premiere of the Spotify podcast "Living & Learning with Reba McEntire."ABC via Getty Images

The two began checking in with one another every morning on calls they called "Coffee Camp."

"We’d talk in the morning, we started ‘Coffee Camp’ while I was staying in Oklahoma," she said.

Linn, a former "CSI: Miami" star, was willing to wake up early for a chance to speak to his sweetie.

"I was in California, she was in Tennessee so sometimes my ‘Coffee Camp’ started at 3 a.m. but, man, I have never missed one. I don’t want to ever miss one. They've all been great," said the actor.

During their chat, McEntire and Linn treated listeners to the hilarious origin story behind their affectionate "tot" nicknames. McEntire calls Linn "my Sugar Tot," while Linn calls the singer "Tater Tot."

McEntire recalled a night out that the couple spent with friends at dinner, saying, "On the menu was Tater Tots and I just went nuts because I love Tater Tots. And so, Rex is famous for giving people nicknames and he said, 'That's yours.'"

"My nicknames are legendary. They stick with people," Linn boasted. "But I never premeditate them and they always have to present themselves.

"That was the perfect moment. You ordered Tater Tots, you delved into them like a great white shark with ketchup," he continued as McEntire burst out laughing. "And I just thought, that's it. It's 'Tater Tot.'"

Linn's nickname was given to him by McEntire's sister Susie, who chimed in one day while McEntire was talking to Linn on the phone. "Tell 'Sugar Tot' hi for us," Susie joked.

During an appearance on TODAY earlier this month, McEntire revealed that she and Linn have been "pretty much inseparable" since their romance began.

The pair, who went public with their relationship in October 2020, grew closer after Linn called to check on McEntire after her late mother grew ill.

"We’d gotten to see each other before because we’re both on ‘Young Sheldon.’ So starting in March of 2020, we just kept talking and visiting and finally got together, see each other in June. And we’ve been pretty much inseparable ever since," said the singer.