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Over the moon — Trisha Yearwood’s happy and not afraid to show it

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Updated: April 1, 2014 10:00AM



Trisha Yearwood should consider recording a cover of “The Happiest Girl in the Whole U.S.A.” The country music star-turned-best-selling cookbook author-turned Food Network show host just gushes happiness. And she’s the first to admit it’s “sickening.”

“Yes, Garth and I are THAT couple, the one that’s so truly happy it makes you want to puke,” Yearwood says, laughing.

The Garth she refers to is her hubby, country singer megastar Garth Brooks. And before we can chat about Yearwood’s first solo tour in five years, which makes a stop in Joliet on Feb. 28, the singer excitedly announces she will hit the road with Brooks later in 2014 or early 2015, for his long-awaited return tour.

“I’ve been singing with Garth in Vegas the past few years [for his residency at the Wynn Las Vegas & Encore Resort], and it was just the best experience we could have shared,” Yearwood says. “It was such an intimate show for him that people got to see a side of him they may not know; he’s such a goofball. I can’t wait to be on the road with him this year. To get to do what you love with the person you love most in the world, there’s nothing more I could want.”

Yearwood admits her return to the road for a solo tour — and she emphatically states that Garth will NOT be making any surprise guest appearances at any of her shows — was born out of the genuine love she has for music.

“Lots of things became part of this decision to go back out on the road,” Yearwood says. “The whole cooking show, the live tweeting on Saturday mornings and books has been fabulous, but it’s very time-consuming and it can suck the life out of you if you let it. Some fans had posted [on the Internet], ‘So you’re done with music?’ And I was like, what? If I had to choose a career, I would choose music.”

Yearwood says she refers to her current road show as the Just Because Tour because she just wanted to get back to singing.

“I don’t have a new album to promote. I don’t have a new single. It’s not a ton of shows, only 22 dates, and I’m only gone a couple weekends of the month for the next three months,” she says. “I’ll leave Garth plenty of casseroles to reheat [laughs]. I’m so excited to be back with my band, and this whole touring lifestyle. And it’s a very intimate tour; we’re playing smaller theaters, so I can really interact with the fans.

“Music is what I was born to do. ... I asked God if this is not what I’m supposed to do with my life, give me the desire to do something else. The strong desire for music never went away.”

When asked about Brooks’ declaration on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in November of his deep love for her, Yearwood doesn’t skip a beat.

“I was 41 when I married Garth,” she says. “It’s no offense to his past or mine. I know I wasn’t unhappy before I married him; I just didn’t know THIS level of happy existed. We know what we have is special. We know this is really rare and we treasure it.”

As for the couple’s joint tour, Yearwood says she can’t wait for the experience.

“All I know is that it’s big arenas,” Yearwood says, laughing. “It’s all in the planning stages. I told everyone to not tell me anything about the show because knowing me, I’ll just blurt it out somewhere.”

As for the foodie side of her life (her cable cooking show “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen” airs on Saturday mornings on the Food Network), Yearwood is working on another cookbook, one that revisits some of her recipes and lightens them up. (The singer lost 30 pounds but says she would never write a diet book because “it’s not about dieting.”)

“This is the food I grew up with, the recipes from my family. Sure there’s plenty of comfort food dishes in my cookbooks, but we didn’t and we don’t eat that way every day. I eat lean meats, fruits and vegetables. But when I make a German chocolate cake for my husband, I have a piece. It’s not about denying yourself the food you love. It’s learning how to eat it smartly. And it’s about changing your lifestyle. I do have a trainer, but I discovered Zumba last year and I just love it. I go four or five times a week.”

As for the sappy happy that is her life with Brooks, one need only ask Yearwood about Valentine’s Day, which was coming up when we had our conversation.

“For us, it really is Valentine’s Day every day,” Yearwood says breaking into a hearty laugh.

Email: mdinunzio@suntimes.com

Twitter: @MiriamDiNunzio



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