Emmylou Harris

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The Little Drummer Boy
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Light Of The Stable
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Away In A Manger
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Beautiful Star Of Bethlehem
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O Little Town Of Bethlehem
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Golden Craddle
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Christmas Duets & Collaborations
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Mark Knopfler, Emmylou Harris - Love And Happiness
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Christmas Music Playlists with Emmylou Harris Songs

With Nary A Wrecking Snowball To Be Seen

Emmylou Harris remains one of country music’s most enduring artists and over the years has built up an enviable list of collaborations with such famous artists as Gram Parsons, Bob Dylan, the Band, Steve Earle and Dolly Parton. Her one and only Christmas album was released in 1979 with the title track appearing some 4 years earlier as a single. Written by Steve and Elizabeth Rhymer ‘Light of the Stable’ was unmistakably religious in tone and featured a country supergroup consisting of Linda Ronstadt, Dolly Parton and Neil Young on backing vocals. The song was beautifully produced and hasn’t aged in the least over the years. With such a strong seed for her Christmas album it is no surprise that ‘Light of the Stable’, the album, is a milestone for Christmas recordings. For most of the LP Harris kept it sacred and reverential but there were also moments of levity like on her faithful cover of Tex Logan’s ‘Christmas Time's a-Coming’.

Harris’ renditions of ‘O Little Town of Bethlehem’, ‘Away In A Manger’ and ‘The First Noel’ could be played at any Christmas religious ceremony such is the adoration on show. She proved that she could look beyond the obvious standards too as the little known ‘Angel Eyes’, ‘Beautiful Star of Bethlehem’ and ‘Golden Cradle’ added much to the sense of greatness. And what would any self-respecting Christmas album be without ‘Silent Night’, which Harris dispatches with consummate ease as her vocals effortlessly parallel the gentle strings and chords. In an album of quiet reflection it felt like we’d reached the summit on ‘Silent Night’.

For many years following ‘Light of the Stable’ Emmylou Harris recorded little new Christmas material although a 1987 compilation ‘A Christmas Tradition’, featuring some of country music greatest exponents like Randy Travis (‘White Christmas Makes Me Blue’) and the Everly Brothers (‘Silent Night’), included her song ‘Light of The Stable’. In 2004 an expanded edition of ‘Light of the Stable’ was released with 3 newly recorded Harris songs appended. Although it was 25 years since the album was originally released ‘There's a Light’, ‘Cherry Tree Carol’ and ‘Man Is an Island’ seamlessly slotted into the flow of the otherwise classic fare. ‘Cherry Tree Carol’ was a real delight with a sprightly banjo hinting at all the fun that is up for grabs over the season.

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