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Emmylou Harris

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Birmingham AL, United States (1947 – present)

Emmylou Harris (born April 2, 1947 in Birmingham, Alabama) is an American singer-songwriter and musician. In addition to her work as a solo artist and bandleader, both as an interpreter of other composers’ works and as a singer-songwriter, she is a sought-after backing vocalist and duet partner, working with numerous other artists including Gram Parsons, The Band, Linda Ronstadt, Roy Orbison, Dolly Parton, Mark Knopfler, Guy Clark, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Rodney Crowell, John Denver and Neil Young.

Harris is truly an innovator. For over 30 years, Emmylou has flowed effortlessly between genres achieving popularity in pop, folk, country and now alternative. The common bridge is an exquisite vocal style and a gift for discovering the heart of a song.

Born in Birmingham, Alabama on April 2, 1947, the daughter of Walter and Eugenia Harris grew up near Washington, D.C. As a college student in the late 60s, she sang with a local folk duo and eventually moved to Greenwich Village. She played the clubs on the local folk scene occasionally sharing the stage with Jerry Jeff Walker and David Bromberg.

Discovered in 1971 by Chris Hillman, Hillman brought Gram Parsons to hear her sing in a small club in the Washington D.C. area. In 1972, she answered the call from Gram to join him in Los Angeles to work on his first solo album, “GP.” According to Songfacts, Parsons tragic early death in 1973 left Harris at an emotional and musical crossroads. Her earliest signature song, Boulder to Birmingham was written shortly after Gram’s death, and it showed the depth of her shock and pain at losing her friend and mentor.

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