One famous former bride in particular is probably thinking quite a bit about weddings this month--not only is her anniversary in May, her current hit single, "Marry Me," is heating up as a romantic choice for first dances at receptions this year. I'm talking about Martina McBride, of course, who celebrates 24 happily wedded years with husband John on Tuesday.
It's not easy maintaining a marriage when both partners are as busy as the McBrides--in addition to Martina's hectic schedule, John's an accomplished audio engineer who runs his own studio. Oh, yeah, and they also have three daughters (two of them teenagers). However, the couple have managed to make it work--and make it look fun, as well.
"Part of it is, you know, choosing the right person," notes McBride, when asked the secret to her successful relationship. "I got a good one." Aside from that? "It's all about picking up the slack and helping each other out. Having each other's back. We like each other and have a great deal of respect for each other.
"Communication is key, humor is key...all of that stuff," she continues. "You have to be able to talk to each other about everything. Also, sometimes we're nicest and kindest to the people we're not closest to, and then we can vent on the people we're closest to. That's part of a healthy relationship, but I also think it's important to take the time to be kind to each other as well."
McBride, who performed "Marry Me" live at the 2012 Academy of Country Music Awards with duet partner Pat Monahan from Train, shared her 1988 wedding photo with People prior to the show's telecast (you can see it here). "First of all, we must remember it was the '80s, so cut me some slack," she laughs, when asked her recollections of the day. "I had a poodle perm and John had a mullet--not exactly, uh, how we would style our hair today."
Despite the period-specific fashion, the McBrides still manage to look glowing. "It was beautiful," McBride admits. "It was a dream wedding. I just remember being really happy. I was really young--21 years old--and I was just happy. Happy to be getting married to my best friend."
Given her successful track record with marriage--as well as her sweet marriage-minded single with Monahan--McBride was a natural choice to serenade a real-life couple who chose to tie the knot live on stage at the 2012 ACM Awards. The event drew mixed reviews from viewers, with some finding the concept romantic and others over-the-top.
"From our point of view it was beautiful," McBride explains, noting that while on stage she was not aware of the somewhat confusing audio treatment of the wedding, which cut back and forth from her vocals to the actual reading of the ceremony. "It had never been done before, so what was important to me was that we gave enough reverence to the wedding...it was a delicate balance."
Most importantly to McBride, the "ACMs Couple" were completely thrilled with their wedding. "They were incredibly happy," she says. "We did an extended rehearsal the day before, so we knew exactly what it was going to be like. They did request one single change. A lot of care was taken so that they had what they expected."
McBride calls the couple "incredibly gracious" to have shared their special day with the nation. "They had already planned on using 'Marry Me' in their wedding already--their wedding was going to be in October, they moved it up," she explains. "It seemed like it was meant to be. They are such sweet people and a beautiful couple."
Although the ACMs are all wrapped up, McBride is in the midst of a busy period touring and making appearances. She does happen to have the 15th free, however, and will be at home. So what are she and John planning to do for their anniversary? McBride is simply happy to have the day off. "I don't know--something like a dinner and a movie. With three kids, it's hard to make elaborate plans!"
Happy anniversary to the McBrides--may you have many more years together!
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