Her mother, Gayle Inge, was appointed to be her son Zander's legal guardian in 2007 after McCready was arrested for violating probation on a drug-related charge. The boy's father is McCready's ex-boyfriend Billy McKnight.
Following a custody hearing in May 2011, McCready released a statement, saying, "We have progressed in a positive manner to reunite me and my son, Zander. I feel very optimistic this will happen in the near future."
But just six months later, in November 2011, she was accused of violating a court order for failing to bring Zander back to her mother in Florida after a visit. The boy was placed in foster care while McCready and her mother worked out the custody dispute.
McCready's struggle with substance abuse was broadcast in 2010 on the third season of "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew."
"You know what, I don't think I'm ever going to be one of those people that has a normal, quiet existence," McCready told ABC Radio in 2010. "I've been chosen for some reason to be bigger and larger than life in every way. Negative and positive."
McCready, who was born and raised in southern Florida, moved to Nashville when she was 18 to start her music career.
Within a few months, she was starting to work with producer David Malloy, who got her tapes to RLG Records. The company signed her to a contract after seeing her in concert, giving her a record deal less than a year after her arrival in Nashville.
Her debut album, "Ten Thousand Angels," went gold within six months of its release in April 1996, and eventually went multi-platinum. Two more followed: "If I Don't Stay the Night," in 1997; and "I'm Not So Tough" in 1999.
Her most recent album, "I'm Still Here," featuring new versions of her early hits "Ten Thousand Angels" and "Guys Do It All the Time," was released in March 2010.