Trisha Yearwood has released 11 albums since her self-titled debut in 1991. If you haven't heard that one ever -- or in a while -- go back and listen to it. It was all good. There's even a track on it that her then-friend Garth Brooks wrote, called "Like We Never Had a Broken Heart."
Anyway, after that album, Yearwood released another one in 1992. Then another in 1993. And so on. She had an album out about every couple of years.
But then after her latest one, a Big Machine Records release in 2007 titled Heaven, Heartache and the Power of Love, Yearwood stopped.
And that was a great, great album. It's not like it was some kind of experimental thing or a weird departure into some sub-genre of country. It was perfect. The track list revealed the names of some of Nashville's most prolific songwriters -- Tony Arata, Matraca Berg, Jim Collins, Liz Rose, Chris Stapleton, Jessi Alexander and others. (And how's this for bizarre coincidences? Both Yearwood and her husband Garth Brooks released their last round of new music in 2007.)
So what took her so long? Why has she waited seven long years to give her fans new music? She's been busy, obviously.
Not long after that last album in 2007, Yearwood started writing New York Times best-selling cookbooks, an endeavor that led to her Food Network show Trisha's Southern Kitchen, now in its fifth season.
Now that Yearwood is making time for music again, including her upcoming tour with Brooks, I'm thinking that it will all be worth the wait.
She has signed a new record deal with Sony Music Nashville, and her 12th album will be released on Sony's RCA Nashville imprint. (Brooks recently signed a deal with Sony to release his new music on RCA.)
"I chose the title PrizeFighter because it feels like an anthem for all of us," Yearwood said of her new album. "It's about fighting for what you believe in and never giving up, even when it's hard. It's a message we all need to hear."