In 1996, LeAnn Rimes burst out of nowhere with her debut single “Blue,” which immediately captured the attention of country fans across America. It wasn’t just the fact that her rich, powerful vocals were remarkably similar to Patsy Cline — it was the fact that Rimes was only 13 years old. Like Tanya Tucker and Brenda Lee before her, she had a hit with her debut single and was barely a teenager at the time. It was quite an auspicious way to begin a career. Born in Jackson, Mississippi, but raised in Garland, Texas, Rimes (born August 28, 1982) began singing as a child, performing at local talent contests.
At the age of 11, she released her first album on an independent record label called Nor Va Jak. That same year, Bill Mack, a Dallas disc jockey and record promoter, met Rimes, and impressed by her talents, he took her under his wing and began cultivating a plan to break her into the mainstream. The cornerstone of Mack’s plan was a song called “Blue,” which he had written in the ’60s. Mack claimed that he had written the tune for Cline, but she had died before she was able to record the song.