Lynne was born Shelby Lynne Moorer in Quantico, VA, in 1968, and grew up mostly in Jackson, AL. Her father was a local bandleader and her mother a harmony-singing teacher, and as children, she and her younger sister Allison -- later a country recording artist in her own right -- sometimes joined their parents on-stage to sing along. However, Lynne's father was a violent alcoholic who at one point had her thrown in jail; when Lynne was 17, he shot his wife dead in the family's driveway, then turned the gun on himself while his daughters looked on. Lynne took charge of raising her sister, and married her high school sweetheart (albeit briefly) prior to their move to Nashville. There, Lynne recorded some demo songs, which landed her an appearance on TNN's Nashville Now series. That in turn led to a duet with George Jones, 1988's Top 50 hit "If I Could Bottle This Up," and a record deal with Epic, where Lynne teamed with legendary producer Billy Sherrill for her 1989 debut album Sunrise. The follow-up, 1990's Tough All Over, took more of a Reba McEntire-esque direction, and 1991's Soft Talk found Lynne moving into slick country-pop.