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LeAnn Rimes is one of the biggest names in country music. Fans watching The Masked Singer Season 11 will see her hit the stage in 2024, reminding viewers of Rimes’ powerful pipes and the beautiful songs she’s released through the years. However, it hasn’t been easy for the superstar. When she was just 14 years old, she released a version of the same song as Trisha Yearwood on the same day — and it sparked a “feud” that country fans will never forget. Here’s what Rimes said about it.

LeAnn Rimes and Trisha Yearwood released versions of the same song on the same day in 1997, sparking a ‘feud’

LeAnn Rimes singing and smiling into a microphone outdoors
LeAnn Rimes | Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

Country music fans likely remember the alleged “feud” between LeAnn Rimes and Trisha Yearwood. The two country singers released the song “How Do I Live” on the same day in 1997.

So, how did this happen? Diane Warren, the writer of “How Do I Live,” ran into Rimes at a restaurant and convinced the then-14-year-old to record a version of the song, which was meant to be part of the Con Air soundtrack. At the same time, Touchstone Pictures got ahold of Trisha Yearwood for the same task. Yearwood recorded her version of “How Do I Live” without knowing that Rimes already recorded the first version.

Warren caught wind that Yearwood had a recording of the song and told Rimes’ label that they should also release Rimes’ version of the song. “How Do I Live” was released by Rimes and Yearwood to the public on the same day.

The battle between the two songs got dicey on the radio and during awards season. Both versions of the song were up for Best Country Female Vocal Performance at the Grammys. While the awards program chose Rimes to sing the song live during the show, Yearwood walked away with the trophy that evening.

The two country artists refused to speak poorly about each other to the press, but they were frustrated by what was going on. After the awards, Rimes spoke out.

“I wasn’t a happy person,” Rimes told the Associated Press, according to Rolling Stone. “I felt betrayed. Not by fans but by people in the business. It’s disheartening to see what the fans like and (have) politics take it from me.”

Yearwood also hated the idea of feuding with Rimes. “I would not have chosen to go up against LeAnn Rimes,” she told the Chicago Tribune at the time. Yearwood added that Rimes has “one of the most amazing voices who’s selling a billion records a minute.”

LeAnn Rimes said she was in ‘survival mode for 25 years’

LeAnn Rimes reflected on her early years as a teen in the country music business. It wasn’t easy to navigate the difficulties, especially regarding what occurred between her and Trisha Yearwood. However, she grew to have a lot of respect for herself.

“I really respect myself as a kid,” she said during an interview with Kelleigh Bannen in 2021, according to Sounds Like Nashville. “I’ll start crying talking about it, but yeah, it’s beautiful. I don’t think I’ve had the respect that I have had for her or have for her now until recently. Because I was just in survival mode for 25 years and now being out of survival mode and being able to reflect, and that’s a recent thing… I’m kind of always looking to reconnect with what was it about her that was so clear and so powerful.”

The ‘You Light Up My Life’ singer hits the stage in ‘The Masked Singer’ Season 11


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LeAnn Rimes fans get to see her hit the stage in The Masked Singer Season 11 with a guest performance during “The Wizard of Oz Night.” She’ll perform “Over the Rainbow” as a guest performer.

This isn’t Rimes’ first time on The Masked Singer, as she won season 4 of the series as The Sun. Rimes adored being The Sun and talked to People about hiding her identity.

“I think that gets ingrained into people’s minds of who they think you are,” Rimes said. “This was a way for people to not have this preconceived idea or storyline that was connected to who they think I am. And just truly feel my essence and authenticity. It felt like the perfect, synchronistic reset.”

The Masked Singer Season 11 airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.

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