Emmylou Harris
American musician
Emmylou Harris
Emmylou Harris is an American singer-songwriter and musician. She has released many chart-topping albums and singles over the course of her career, and has won 12 Grammys and numerous other awards.
Biography
Emmylou Harris's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Emmylou Harris from around the web
MerleFest Announces Initial Lineup for 30th Celebration in April 2017
Huffington Post - 3 months
The good folks at MerleFest, which is slated for April 27-30, 2017, have announced the initial lineup for the festival's 30th anniversary celebration and I am happy to say it's full of the usual suspects: Jim Lauderdale, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush, Del McCoury and Peter Rowan. No surprise there as most of these musicians have been involved in the festival since its inception. I am particularly excited to see Mountain Heart, Front Country, Chatham County Line, Scythian and Swift Creek in the lineup. Josh Shilling, Mountain Heart's frontman, is also excited about returning to MerleFest. "We've played the festival a few times, but I'm super excited for everyone to see the band's new configuration," he says. "The members of Mountain Heart have literally been going to MerleFest since we were old enough to walk. To be returning again to the Watson Stage not only as fans, but as performers, means the world to us. MerleFest is one of the top festivals in the world to experience. The loc ...
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Huffington Post article
Country singer Margo Price's debut has even got Jack White excited
LATimes - 5 months
Don’t get Margo Price wrong. It’s not that the Illinois-reared, Nashville-based singer-songwriter isn’t flattered by comparisons to such respected country forbears as Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris. It’s just that such compliments only tell half the story. “I don’t just want to listen...
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LATimes article
RIP Oscar Brand, Who Was Way More Than a Folk Music Footnote
Huffington Post - 5 months
If most deaths are like losing a page or a chapter, Oscar Brand's death Friday was like losing a book. The phrase "living encyclopedia" gets tossed around a little too loosely, but when it came to folk music in the broadest, richest, most satisfying scope, there's no other way to describe Oscar Brand. He was 96 when he died of pneumonia at his Great Neck, N.Y., home, according to his manager Doug Yeager. Less than a week before he had hosted his final Folksong Festival, the weekly radio show he launched in 1945 over New York's WNYC. He hosted the show for more than 70 years, the longest single-host radio program in history. That put him in the Guinness Book of World Records, and he could have had a double entry if there were a category for "least money earned from a radio show," because from start to finish he never took a red cent. And say, speaking of "red cent," perhaps Brand's most shining achievement was using the radio in the early 1950s to showcase music of si ...
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Huffington Post article
The 2016 Americana Honors & Awards Ceremony
NPR - 5 months
NPR Music returns as the exclusive webcast home for Nashville's big night on Sept. 21, with performances by Bob Weir, Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris, George Strait, Jason Isbell and The Lumineers.
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NPR article
Emmylou, Dolly and Linda: Trio Returns For One Sweet and Welcome Last Roundup
The Huffington Post - 6 months
The re-release of the 1986 and 1994 Trio sessions, a collaboration of Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt, is almost certainly the best Americana record coming out this fall. More...
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The Huffington Post article
Joan Baez Celebrates 75th Birthday With a Batch of Old Friends and Great Songs (Bob's There in Spirit)
Huffington Post - 10 months
Joan Baez gets taken for granted sometimes, and her new birthday concert on PBS reminds us why that should not happen. Joan Baez 75th Birthday Celebration, which premieres Friday at 9 p.m. ET on Ch. 13 in New York and airs on most other PBS stations in June, serves as a kind of highlight tour through a career that has stretched into seven decades. No one stays around in music that long without taste and talent, both of which are evident throughout the 17-song evening. While Baez is probably best described as a folksinger, she has always drawn her music from many wells, and on this night that includes Stephen Foster, whose "Hard Times Come Again No More" she performs as a duet with Emmylou Harris (above). She goes to the gospel well for "Oh Freedom" with Mavis Staples and a solo "Swing Low Sweet Chariot," which she prefaces with a story about singing it for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. In keeping with her standard practice, Baez doesn't banter much between songs ...
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Huffington Post article
Emmylou Harris to play intimate concert for 70 benefiting dog rescue
LATimes - 11 months
Country singer and songwriter Emmylou Harris will play in an unusually intimate setting on April 26, a few days before her performance slot at the 2016 Stagecoach Country Music Festival, for a fundraiser concert benefiting the animal shelter she’s long supported. Harris is slated to perform at...
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LATimes article
As the First David Bowie Tributes Roll In, Here's To 10 Other Artists Whose Deaths Inspired Music
Huffington Post - about 1 year
In an age where the whole world is a vidcam, it took only hours for the first breathtaking David Bowie musical tribute to go viral. Chris Nickol, organist at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow, marked his sadness over the passing of the much-loved Bowie by sitting down at the organ and playing the artist's "Life On Mars." Soon it was echoing far beyond Scotland, and it goes like this: With Bowie as with most artists whose unexpected deaths leave us somewhere between shocked and numb, the first musical responses have tended to be renditions of his own music. But tribute songs are already beginning to surface. A Bowie fan band in Ohio, Modern Electric, is performing one this weekend, and Youtube is starting accumulate a few originals. That's a popular music tradition of its own, and a heartening one. Music is the language musicians speak, and song feels like the natural medium for a singer's sendoff. So even as we anticipate more songs about David Bo ...
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Huffington Post article
The All-Star Dog Rescue Celebration Is Good Reason to Be Thankful this Thursday
Huffington Post - over 1 year
America has 8 million animals in their shelters, and only half of those make it out alive. Troubling statistics like these, which only seem to multiply each year, were enough to keep Emmy nominated producer, and avid dog-loving activist, Michael Levitt awake at night. So he took action with the most powerful medium in the world - television - and made history in the process. Last Thanksgiving day, FOX broadcast Levitt's creation, the first ever prime time dog adoption special. Hosts Jane Lynch and Hilary Swank (who also Executive Produces with Levitt) along with a who's who of film, music and TV stars, helped inspire more than 4,500 dog adoption applications. This Thursday (FOX 8pm - 10pm) marks the welcome return of Levitt and Swank's All-Star Dog Rescue Celebration, an uplifting two hour spectacular, which is fast becoming as much of an annual Thanksgiving Day tradition as Macy's Parade. In the middle of producing this year's show, I managed to sneak a few minutes in with M ...
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Huffington Post article
Uncovered</em>: Chats with Shawn Colvin and Au Pair's Gary Louris and Django Haskins, Plus Steve Forbert, Aaron Camper, Lauren Marsh and Andy Hackbarth Exclusives
Huffington Post - over 1 year
A Conversation with Shawn Colvin Mike Ragogna: Shawn, how are you? Shawn Colvin: I'm good, I'm doing support for Don Henley, I'm on my bus right now, I had an eighteen hour ride yesterday from Denver to Dallas. MR: So let's take a look at your new album, Uncovered. Years ago, you recorded Cover Girl on which you took on other songwriters' material. I think it was a little more than twenty years ago. What are your thoughts about having such a long career? SC: Well, the years keep adding up and that's the way it is. I still have a job and I make records and I'm a lucky, lucky artist. MR: Nice. So how does your approach for this album differ from Cover Girl? Was it because that album's material influenced you early on and were songs that you personally loved? SC: Hmm. I loved all the songs on Cover Girl absolutely. I think there were more songs on Cover Girl that represented my past incarnation, which was when I didn't write and I made a living in clubs and bars doing ...
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Huffington Post article
Josh Ritter Talks About His 8th Studio Album, <i>Sermon on the Rocks</i>, Released Today
Huffington Post - over 1 year
Josh Ritter's eighth studio album, Sermon on the Rocks (Pytheas Recordings), is a rollicking and tender masterpiece. His robust fan base has been eagerly awaiting this record a long time, especially since he's previewed quite a few of these tunes at live concerts over the past year. Produced by Ritter with Trina Shoemaker (Queens of the Stone Age, Emmylou Harris), the album's 12 songs were recorded over two weeks at New Orleans' The Parlor Recording Studio. The work features Matt Barrick from The Walkmen on drums, Zachariah Hickman on bass, Josh Kaufman on guitar, and Sam Kassirer on piano. If you've seen Ritter play live, you know how infectious he is on the concert stage. If you have not, do yourself a favor and go. His joyous smile and his humor will give you a peek into his open, exuberant heart. He's no run of the mill singer/songwriter; he's an artist, and his songs sparkle like diamonds, they read like short novels. This song cycle is informed by the wild open prairie, by ...
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Huffington Post article
Review: Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell a magical match
Chicago Times - almost 2 years
Resembling an older happily married couple that finishes one another's sentences, Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell looked and sounded like they'd been performing onstage together for decades Sunday at an acoustic concert at a sold-out City Winery. Technically, however, the longtime friends only...
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Chicago Times article
Hebden folk to keep your eye on at this year’s roots festival
Hebden Bridge Times - almost 2 years
Des Horsfall Des has worked with various Roots and Country-Rock band line-ups since the late 70s, Des has had, in his own words,“a few skirmishes with fame.” In the mid 80s he fronted Blues-Rock band Raw Deal. In the 1990s Des was to be seen in hit videos and as the opening act for Joe Ely, Steve Earle,Emmylou Harris,Chuck Prophet and many others. After reemerging from a decade in studio engineering Des is currently undertaking acoustic duo dates with various guests, the occasional full band and solo gigs. Lucy &amp; The Caterpillar A name you might be familiar with, having been a regular around the north’s music scene a few years ago, earning herself much mainstream press in the process. Lucy &amp; The Caterpillar have played alongside the likes of Adele, Florence and Laura Marling among others. After taking a brief hiatus, to open her own vintage boutique shop in Hebden Bridge, also named Lucy and the Caterpillar, and launching her own clothing label ‘Lucille’, Lucy is n ...
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Hebden Bridge Times article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Emmylou Harris
    FORTIES
  • 2016
    She has released many popular albums and singles over the course of her career, and – as of 2016 – she has won 13 Grammys as well as numerous other awards.
    More Details Hide Details Her work and recordings include work as a solo artist, a bandleader, an interpreter of other composers' works, a singer-songwriter, and a backing vocalist and duet partner. She has worked with numerous leading artists, including Gram Parsons, Bob Dylan, John Denver, Linda Ronstadt, Dolly Parton, Roy Orbison, the Band, Patty Griffin, Mark Knopfler, Albert Lee, Delbert McClinton, Guy Clark, Willie Nelson, Bright Eyes, Rodney Crowell, John Prine, Neil Young, Steve Earle, Garrison Keillor, and Ryan Adams.
  • 2014
    It was another Billboard Top 10 Country album for Harris, and in 2014 she won her 13th Grammy Award for it.
    More Details Hide Details Emmylou first appeared on A Prairie Home Companion in 1985 and has been a fan favourite ever since. The Traveling Kind, a collaboration with Rodney Crowell, was released May 12, 2015 by Nonesuch Records. In 1997 and 1998, Harris performed in Sarah McLachlan's Lilith Fair, promoting feminism in music. Since 1999, Harris has been organizing an annual benefit tour called Concerts for a Landmine Free World. All proceeds from the tours support the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation's (VVAF) efforts to assist innocent victims of conflicts around the world. The tour also benefits the VVAF's work to raise America's awareness of the global landmine problem. Artists that have joined Harris on the road for these dates include Mary Chapin Carpenter, Bruce Cockburn, Sheryl Crow, Steve Earle, Joan Baez, Patty Griffin, Nanci Griffith, Willie Nelson, and Lucinda Williams. Harris is a supporter of animal rights and an active member of PETA. She founded, and in her spare time assists at, Bonapart's Retreat, an animal shelter in Nashville.
  • 2013
    Old Yellow Moon, an album of duets featuring Harris and former Hot Band member Rodney Crowell, was released on February 26, 2013.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2012
    In September 2012, she was featured in a campaign called "30 Songs/30 Days" to support Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, a multi-platform media project inspired by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn's book.
    More Details Hide Details
    The 2012 single "Emmylou", by the Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit on their album The Lion's Roar, is in part a tribute to Harris, with lyrics referring to her relationship to Gram Parsons.
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  • 2011
    Later in 2011, she collaborated with Australian musician and screenwriter Nick Cave on the soundtrack to John Hillcoat's film Lawless.
    More Details Hide Details Set in Depression-era Franklin County, Virginia, U.S., the film was released in August 2012 in the U.S. and September 2012 in the U.K.
    In 2011 she released a version of the song 'To Ohio' in collaboration with the American indie folk band 'The Low Anthem'.
    More Details Hide Details
    PBS host Tavis Smiley interviewed Harris in a program that aired on April 20, 2011.
    More Details Hide Details In the interview Harris spoke of being a straight-A student in high school, which led her to being selected as valedictorian, and recounted learning to play guitar by memorizing three chords.
  • 2010
    In 2010, Harris regrouped with the latest version of the Red Dirt Boys—Madeira, Owings, Donohue, and Simpkins—for Lilith Fair summer dates and a scheduled U.S. autumn tour.
    More Details Hide Details According to an interview with Bonnie Tyler by Digital Spy, Harris will be teaming up with her on Tyler's upcoming album. Harris will do backing vocals on a song written and produced by Wayne Warner. A recent solo album, Hard Bargain, was released on the Nonesuch label on April 26, 2011. It reached No. 3 on Billboards Country Albums chart—her highest-charting album since 1980—and the Top 20 of the Pop Albums chart.
  • THIRTIES
  • 2009
    In April 2009 Harris became a grandmother when her daughter gave birth to a daughter, Prudence.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2008
    Madeira, Simpkins, and Donohue performed with her in late 2008 and 2009, appearing on "A Prairie Home Companion" and at MerleFest and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival.
    More Details Hide Details In September 2009, Owings rejoined the Red Dirt Boys with Miller for the remainder of 2009.
    Harris wrote a song entitled "In Rodanthe" for the 2008 film Nights in Rodanthe.
    More Details Hide Details A solo album, All I Intended to Be, was released on June 10, 2008, to critical acclaim. It reached the Top Five of Billboards Country Albums chart and the Top 20 of the Pop Albums chart. Contributors include Buddy Miller, the McGarrigle sisters, Vince Gill, Phil Madeira, and her Trio sister Dolly Parton. Harris toured with an ensemble she dubbed the Red Dirt Boys, featuring Phil Madeira on accordion, guitar, and keyboards, Colin Linden on guitar and banjo, Rickie Simpkins on mandolin and fiddle, Chris Donohue on bass, and Bryan Owings on drums. It did not include Miller, who was touring with Robert Plant, Alison Krauss and T-Bone Burnett at the time. In 2009, Harris toured with Patty Griffin, Shawn Colvin, and Miller as "Three Girls and Their Buddy".
  • 2007
    She sang "Another Pot o' Tea" with Anne Murray on Murray's album Anne Murray Duets: Friends and Legends, released on November 13, 2007, in Canada and on January 15, 2008, in the U.S.
    More Details Hide Details
    Harris is featured on A Tribute to Joni Mitchell, released on April 24, 2007.
    More Details Hide Details Harris covered the song "The Magdalene Laundries" (originally on Mitchell's 1994 album, Turbulent Indigo).
  • 2006
    She also appeared in the Jonathan Demme documentary concert film Neil Young: Heart of Gold, released in 2006.
    More Details Hide Details All the Roadrunning, an album of collaborations with former Dire Straits frontman Mark Knopfler, was released in April 2006 and supported by a tour of Europe and the U.S. The album was a commercial success, reaching No. 8 in the U.K. and No. 17 in the U.S. Selections recorded during the All the Roadrunning tour performance at the Gibson Amphitheatre were released as a CD/DVD package titled Real Live Roadrunning in November 2006. In addition to several of the compositions that Harris and Knopfler recorded together in the studio, Real Live Roadrunning features solo hits from both members of the duo, as well as a few classic tracks from Knopfler's days with Dire Straits.
  • 2005
    In 2005, Harris worked with Conor Oberst on Bright Eyes' release, I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning, performing backup vocals on three tracks.
    More Details Hide Details In July, she joined Elvis Costello on several dates of his U.S. tour, performing alongside Costello and his band on several numbers each night. Harris and Costello recorded a version of Costello's song "The Scarlet Tide", from the soundtrack of the movie Cold Mountain. July also saw the release of The Very Best of Emmylou Harris: Heartaches & Highways, a single-disc retrospective of Harris's career, on the Rhino Entertainment label. This same year, Harris appeared as a guest vocalist on Neil Young's widely acclaimed Prairie Wind.
    She also lent her voice to the soundtrack of the critically acclaimed 2005 film, Brokeback Mountain, on the song "A Love That Will Never Grow Old", which was controversially omitted from Oscar consideration because of the insubstantial amount of time the song played during the film.
    More Details Hide Details
    On September 9, 2005, Harris participated in "Shelter from the Storm: A Concert for the Gulf Coast", a series of concerts simulcast by most American television stations to raise money for victims of Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita.
    More Details Hide Details She performed with Beth Neilsen Chapman and the Dixie Chicks, harmonizing on Patty Griffin's song "Mary".
  • 2004
    In 2004, Harris led the Sweet Harmony Traveling Revue with Gillian Welch, David Rawlings, Buddy Miller and Patty Griffin.
    More Details Hide Details They performed singly and together and swapped instruments.
  • 2003
    Harris released Stumble into Grace, her follow-up to Red Dirt Girl, in 2003.
    More Details Hide Details Like its predecessor, it contained mostly self-penned material.
    In 2003, Harris supplied the finishing touches in harmonizing with the Dixie Chicks on a song they were recording in the studio, "Godspeed".
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2002
    Harris and many of the same artists took their show on the road for the Down from the Mountain Tour in 2002.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2000
    Also in 2000, Harris joined an all-star group of traditional country, folk and blues artists for the T-Bone Burnett–produced soundtrack to the Coen Brothers film, O Brother, Where Art Thou?
    More Details Hide Details The soundtrack won multiple CMA, ACM and Grammy awards. A documentary/concert film, Down from the Mountain, featured the artists performing music from the film and other songs at the Ryman Auditorium.
    In 2000, Harris released her solo follow-up to Wrecking Ball, Red Dirt Girl, produced by Lanois protégé Malcolm Burn.
    More Details Hide Details For the first time since The Ballad of Sally Rose, the album contained a number of Harris's own compositions. Like Wrecking Ball, the album's sound leaned more toward alternative rock than country. Nevertheless, it reached No. 5 on Billboard's Country Albums chart as well as a healthy No. 54 on the pop side. It also won Harris another of her 12 Grammy awards, in the category of Best Contemporary Folk Album. Harris also accompanied alternative country singer Ryan Adams on his solo debut, Heartbreaker and sang on Tracy Chapman's fifth album, Telling Stories.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1999
    Also in 1999, Harris paid tribute to her former singing partner Gram Parsons by serving as co-executive producer of Return of the Grievous Angel: A Tribute to Gram Parsons, an album that brought together more than a dozen artists.
    More Details Hide Details Harris performed duets with Beck, Sheryl Crow and the Pretenders on this album's tracks.
    In January 1999, Harris released Trio 2 with Parton and Ronstadt.
    More Details Hide Details Much of the album had actually been recorded in 1994 but remained unreleased for nearly five years because of record label and personnel disputes, conflicting schedules, and career priorities of the three artists. Trio 2 was much more contemporary-sounding than its predecessor and was certified Gold. It included their version of Neil Young's classic "After the Gold Rush", which became a popular music video and won another Grammy—this one for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals. Harris and Ronstadt then released a duet album, Western Wall: The Tucson Sessions, later the same year. The two superstars toured together that fall in support of the disc. Both albums made the Top 10 of Billboard's Country Albums chart and also did well on the pop chart.
  • 1998
    Also in 1998, she appeared prominently on Willie Nelson's moody, instrumentally sparse Teatro album, produced by Wrecking Ball producer Lanois.
    More Details Hide Details During the summer of 1997 and 1998, Harris joined Sarah McLachlan's all-woman musical touring festival, the Lilith Fair, where new artists like Patty Griffin could share new experiences and ideas with seasoned musicians like Harris and Bonnie Raitt.
    Harris then took her Wrecking Ball material on the road, releasing the live Spyboy in 1998, backed with a power trio consisting of Nashville producer, songwriter and guitarist Buddy Miller and two New Orleans musicians, drummer Brady Blade and bassist-vocalist-percussionist Daryl Johnson.
    More Details Hide Details In addition to performing songs from Wrecking Ball, the album updated many of Harris's career hits, including "Boulder to Birmingham".
  • 1995
    In 1995, Harris released one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the decade, Wrecking Ball, produced by Daniel Lanois, best known for his work with U2, Peter Gabriel and Bob Dylan.
    More Details Hide Details An experimental album for Harris, the record included Harris's rendition of the Neil Young–penned title track (Young himself provided guest vocals on two of the album's songs), Steve Earle's "Goodbye", Julie Miller's "All My Tears", Jimi Hendrix's "May This Be Love", Anna McGarrigle's "Goin' Back to Harlan" and Gillian Welch's "Orphan Girl". U2's Larry Mullen, Jr., played drums for the project. The album received virtually no country airplay, but it brought Harris to the attention of alternative rock listeners, many of whom had never listened to her music before.
  • 1993
    As with Brand New Dance, 1993's Cowgirl's Prayer—Harris's first studio album after her switch to Elektra Records—was critically praised but received little airplay, and its lead single, "High Powered Love" charted low, peaking at No. 63, prompting her to shift her career in a new direction.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1991
    Around 1991, she dissolved The Hot Band and formed a new band of acoustic musicians—Sam Bush on fiddle, mandolin and vocals, Roy Huskey, Jr. on bass and vocals, Larry Atamanuik on drums, Al Perkins on banjo, guitar, Dobro guitar and vocals, and Jon Randall on guitar, mandolin and vocals—which she named The Nash Ramblers. They recorded a Grammy Award-winning live album in 1992 at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee, which led to the $8 million restoration of the facility into a premium concert and event venue.
    More Details Hide Details It was her last album with Reprise Records. She has been a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1992. By the 1990s, Harris started receiving less airplay as mainstream country stations began shifting their focus to the youth-oriented "new country" format.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1989
    In 1989, she recorded two songs with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band on their album, Will the Circle Be Unbroken: Volume II.
    More Details Hide Details In a snippet of studio chatter included on one of the tracks, she talked during the recording session about her beginnings and how music had changed: 1989's Bluebird album, which featured contributions from Marty Stuart, Bonnie Raitt, and Kate & Anna McGarrigle, included the singles "Heartbreak Hill", which reached No. 8 on the U.S. country singles chart, and "Heaven Only Knows", which reached No. 16, the most recent top-twenty chart singles of Harris' career. The following year's Brand New Dance album received favorable reviews, but marked the beginning of a chart and airplay decline for Harris.
  • 1987
    Harris also released a solo album in 1987, Angel Band, featuring traditional gospel songs, on which she worked with then rising country star Vince Gill, and others.
    More Details Hide Details
    The recording was nominated for the coveted Album of the Year Grammy award (given to U2 that year for The Joshua Tree) and the three women won the statuette for Best Country Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal; the album's Linda Thompson-penned track "Telling Me Lies" reached No. 3 Country, No. 25 Adult Contemporary, and was nominated for a Grammy as 1987's Best Country Song.
    More Details Hide Details
    In 1987, nearly a full decade after their first attempt, Harris teamed up with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt for a long-promised and long-anticipated Trio disc.
    More Details Hide Details The album was the biggest commercial success of Harris's career, spending five weeks at No. 1 on Billboard's Country Albums chart (also quickly reaching the Top 10 on the Pop Albums chart). It sold several million copies and produced four Top 10 Country hits, including "To Know Him Is To Love Him", which hit No. 1.
  • 1985
    They married in 1985 and divorced in 1993.
    More Details Hide Details
    Harris's major-label releases thus far included few of her own songs, but in 1985 her songwriting skills were prominent with the release of a concept album The Ballad of Sally Rose, for which she co-wrote all of the songs.
    More Details Hide Details The album was semi-autobiographical, based loosely on her relationship with Parsons. Harris described it as a "country opera", and a "huge commercial disaster". Her co-writer and producer on the album, English songwriter and musician Paul Kennerley, the writer of the hit singles "Born to Run" (on Harris's 1981 Cimarron album) and "In My Dreams" (on White Shoes). Kennerley also produced her next album, Thirteen.
  • 1982
    Harris moved to Nashville in 1982.
    More Details Hide Details White Shoes in 1983 included an eclectic pairing of the rockish reading of "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" with a remake of the Donna Summer hit "On the Radio", as well as tracks from a diverse group of songwriters including Hot Band member Crowell, Sandy Denny and T-Bone Burnett. It was her last album produced by Brian Ahern until All I Intended to Be in 2008.
  • 1981
    In 1981, Harris's recordings reached the Top 40 on the Billboard pop chart with a cover of "Mister Sandman"—again Top 10 Country as well as Adult Contemporary—from her Evangeline album. (The album version of the song was a track from the Trio sessions with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt, but neither Parton's nor Ronstadt's record companies would allow their artists' vocals to be used on the single, so Harris re-recorded the song, singing all three parts for the single release of the song.)
    More Details Hide Details
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1980
    In 1980, Harris recorded "That Lovin' You Feelin' Again" with Roy Orbison.
    More Details Hide Details The duet's recording was a Top-10 hit on both the Country and Adult Contemporary charts. They were awarded a Grammy for Best Country Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group. She was featured on Paul Kennerley's concept album The Legend of Jesse James, which also featured Levon Helm of the Band and Johnny Cash.
  • 1979
    The roots direction was prominent in her Grammy Award–winning 1979 album Blue Kentucky Girl.
    More Details Hide Details Apart from a cover of the Drifters' "Save the Last Dance for Me", the album was largely made up of classic-styled country material in the vein of Loretta Lynn and Kitty Wells. One of her best-loved albums, it includes songs from the Louvin Brothers' "Everytime You Leave", Willie Nelson's "Sister's Coming Home" and Gram Parsons's signature "Hickory Wind". Wesley Rose took special interest in Harris's recording of "Beneath Still Waters", which became a No. 1 hit. A Christmas album, Light of the Stable, was released in 1979; its title track featured backing vocals by Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt and Neil Young, all three of whom Harris had worked with sporadically since the mid-1970s, and with whom she continued to collaborate with through the 2000s. (Harris, Parton and Ronstadt began working on a trio album during this time, though it remained unfinished for nearly a decade; a few of the tracks recorded for the project were released on their respective solo albums in the interim.) The album is largely acoustic, featuring readings of traditional fare such as "Silent Night", "O Little Town of Bethlehem" and "The First Noel".
    Their (Harris's second and also Ahern's second) daughter, Meghann, was born in 1979.
    More Details Hide Details During this period, Harris recorded and released three studio albums that reflected a shift toward traditional country (at a time when the public was beginning to embrace a more polished Urban Cowboy sound).
  • 1977
    In January 1977, Harris married Brian Ahern.
    More Details Hide Details
    Harris's commercial apex was Luxury Liner, released in 1977, which remains one of her definitive records.
    More Details Hide Details On Luxury Liner, Harris's mix of songs from Chuck Berry ("(You Never Can Tell) C'est la Vie"), Gram Parsons (the title track and "She"), the Carter Family ("Hello Stranger") and Kitty Wells ("Making Believe") illustrate a continuity and artistic merit to country music often overlooked at the time. Even so, many fans expected more original tunes, so she became known as a cover artist. Despite Top Ten singles with "C'est la Vie" and "Making Believe", the album's best-known track is the first recorded cover of Townes Van Zandt's classic "Pancho & Lefty", which would be a No. 1 hit for Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard in 1983. At the end of 1977, Crowell left the Hot Band to pursue a solo career; his replacement was bluegrass multi-instrumentalist and singer Ricky Skaggs. Quarter Moon in a Ten Cent Town signaled a slight change of direction from Harris's previous three albums. Rather than mixing classic and contemporary, the album is made up largely of recently written songs, though from a wide variety of writers. "Two More Bottles of Wine", written by Delbert McClinton, became Harris's third No. 1 single; "To Daddy", written by Dolly Parton, went to No. 3; and a third single, "Easy from Now On", went Top Twenty. The album included two songs by Crowell ("I Ain't Living Long Like This" and "Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight"), two by songwriter Jesse Winchester ("Defying Gravity" and "My Songbird"), and one by Utah Phillips ("Green Rolling Hills").
  • 1976
    Elite Hotel won a Grammy in 1976 for Best Country Vocal Performance, Female.
    More Details Hide Details Harris's reputation for guest work continued. She contributed to albums by Linda Ronstadt, Guy Clark and Neil Young, and she was tapped by Bob Dylan to perform on his Desire album. Harris also filmed one of the studio sequences, owing to her touring schedule, in the Band's The Last Waltz, singing "Evangeline". Burton left the Hot Band in 1976, choosing to remain with Elvis Presley's band, and was replaced by English guitarist Albert Lee.
  • 1975
    Warner Brothers A&R representative Mary Martin introduced Harris to Canadian producer Brian Ahern, who produced her major label debut album, Pieces of the Sky, released in 1975 on Reprise Records.
    More Details Hide Details The album was surprisingly eclectic, especially by Nashville standards, including cover versions of the Beatles' "For No One", Merle Haggard's "Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down" and the Louvin Brothers' "If I Could Only Win Your Love". It also featured "Bluebird Wine", a composition by a young Texas songwriter, Rodney Crowell, who was the first in a long line of songwriters whose talents Harris has championed. The record was one of the most expensive country records produced at the time, featuring the talents of James Burton, Glen Hardin, Ron Tutt, Ray Pohlman, and Bill Payne, as well as two tracks ("Before Believing" and "Queen of the Silver Dollar") that were cut with the Angel Band. Two singles were released: "Too Far Gone", which initially charted at No. 73 (a 1979 reissue hit No. 13), and Harris's first big hit, "If I Could Only Win Your Love", a duet with Herb Pedersen (later a founding member of the Desert Rose Band), which peaked at No. 4.
  • 1974
    Parsons's Grievous Angel was released posthumously in 1974, and three more tracks from his sessions with Harris were included on another posthumous Parsons album, Sleepless Nights, in 1976.
    More Details Hide Details One more album of recorded material from that period was packaged as Live 1973, but was not released until 1982.
  • 1973
    Harris toured as a member of Parsons's band, the Fallen Angels, in 1973, and the pair shone during vocal harmonies and duets.
    More Details Hide Details Later that year, Parsons and Harris worked on a studio album, Grievous Angel. Parsons died in his motel room near what is now Joshua Tree National Park on September 19, 1973, from an accidental overdose of drugs and alcohol.
  • 1971
    Harris soon returned to performing as part of a trio with Gerry Mule and Tom Guidera. In 1971, members of the country rock group the Flying Burrito Brothers saw her perform; former Byrds member Chris Hillman had taken over the band after the departure of founder Gram Parsons, was impressed by Harris, and briefly considered asking her to join the Flying Burrito Brothers.
    More Details Hide Details Instead, Hillman recommended her to Parsons, who was looking for a female vocalist to collaborate with on his first solo album, GP.
  • 1969
    She married fellow songwriter Tom Slocum in 1969 and recorded her first album, Gliding Bird.
    More Details Hide Details Harris and Slocum soon divorced, and Harris and her newborn daughter Hallie moved in with her parents in the Maryland suburbs near Washington, D.C.
  • OTHER
  • 1952
    Harris is from a career military family. Her father, Walter Harris, was a military officer, and her mother, Eugenia, was a wartime military wife. Her father, a member of the Marine Corps, was reported missing in action in Korea in 1952 and spent ten months as a prisoner of war.
    More Details Hide Details Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Harris spent her childhood in North Carolina and Woodbridge, Virginia, where she graduated from Gar-Field Senior High School as class valedictorian. She won a drama scholarship to the UNCG School of Music, Theatre and Dance at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she began to study music seriously, learning to play the songs of Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez on guitar. She dropped out of college to pursue her musical aspirations, and moved to New York City, working as a waitress to support herself while performing folk songs in Greenwich Village coffeehouses during the folkie boom.
  • 1947
    Born on April 2, 1947.
    More Details Hide Details
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