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Reba McEntire opens up about replacing former stepdaughter-in-law Kelly Clarkson on The Voice

The "Fancy" singer was once stepmother-in-law to the The Voice judge, via her previous marriage to Brandon Blackstock's father, Narvel Blackstock


Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson on The Kelly Clarkson Show© Getty
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz Colon - New York
New York WriterNew York
May 16, 2023
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Kelly Clarkson may be departing The Voice after returning to her coaching role for another season, the music competition's 23rd installment, but at least her seat is staying within the family!

Reba McEntire will be taking up one of the coaches' seats in the upcoming 24th season, with the show shaking up three-fourths of their roster. The country music legend for a time was the departing coach's stepmother-in-law, because of her previous marriage to Narvel Blackstock, Brandon Blackstock's father. Reba and Narvel were married from 1989 until 2015, while Kelly and Brandon were married from 2013 to 2021.

The current season of The Voice will say goodbye to Kelly as well as Chance the Rapper, plus most notably, Blake Shelton, who has been a part of the show since its beginning. Fittingly, in his place will be his wife Gwen Stefani, who will be returning for her seventh season as judge. Niall Horan will be back for a second season, and John Legend, who abstained from the 23rd season, will be back as well.

WATCH: Kelly Clarkson reunites with former stepmother-in-law Reba McEntire on The Voice

MORE: Reba McEntire reveals uplifting advice her mom gave her at six-years-old

Reba opened up about joining the new season – her first as a judge though she has previously appeared as guest mentor – to People, and spoke of what she'll be bringing to the table.

The singer is filling the big country shoes Blake is leaving behind, and said: "I'm taking over for Blake so I'm gonna represent country music. [He's got] big boots," adding: "I don't know what size those boots are, but they're big, so I'm gonna really work hard to make him proud."

MORE: Reba McEntire's heartbreaking confession to Garth Brooks revealed

She also noted that though Blake won't be there to compete with her to add singers to their teams, she knows his wife Gwen will serve up more than enough competition.

Niall Horan, Chance The Rapper, Kelly Clarkson, Blake Shelton on The Voice© Getty
The current season 23 judges

She admitted: "I do understand that I need to go razzle-dazzle with Gwen being on there," and revealed that aside from offering the best mentorship to the contestants, she'll step up her fashion game too.

MORE: Reba McEntire reveals what she really thinks of former stepdaughter-in-law Kelly Clarkson

MORE: Kelly Clarkson's reunion with ex-husband's family has fans so excited

"Gwen's always got the nicest outfits, so I really need to step up my game on that," she joked.

Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson on The Kelly Clarkson Show© Getty
Kelly and Reba have remained tight-knit even after their respective divorces from the Blackstock family

Looking forward to her time on the show alongside fellow judges Gwen, John, and Niall, she further said: "John and Niall [are] all really funny and clever, and always have so many smart things to say, so I've got my work cut out for me."

She added: "I'm most excited about basically getting started, and I'm sure that I'll have lots of help, lots of advice, lots of people coming around saying, 'You can do this. You can do that.' And I'm not afraid at all. I think it'll be a very fun adventure."

Reba McEntire helping out Kelly Clarkson's team on The Voice 2023© Getty
Reba helping out Kelly team on The Voice 2023

News of Reba joining the cast was confirmed May 15 at the NBC Upfronts in New York City, where she performed her 1990 hit song "Fancy" following the announcement. She also appeared on The Voice as a "mega mentor" in 2011, serving as an advisor for Blake's team at the time, plus as a mentor for Kelly's this season.

Scroll below for more photos of Kelly, reba, and The Voice coaches.

Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton on The Voice season 22© Getty
Season 22 marked the last time Gwen and Blake did The Voice together
Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson on The Voice© Getty
Kelly met her ex-husband through Reba
Reba McEntire, Warner Music Nashville's President  and CEO John Espositio, Blake Shelton, Brandon Blackstock and Kelly Clarkson attend Warner Music Group Grammy Celebration hosted by InStyle at Chateau Marmont on February 12, 2012 in Los Angeles, Californ© Getty
Kelly and Reba with Brandon and Blake in 2012
Kelly Clarkson (L) and Reba McEntire perform onstage during the 53rd Academy of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 15, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada© Getty
Reba and Kelly have performed together as well
Narvel Blackstock, singers Reba McEntire, Kelly Clarkson and Brandon Blackstock attend Muhammad Ali's Celebrity Fight Night XXI at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa on March 28, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona© Getty
The former couples in 2015

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