The Journal Gazette
Monday, November 29, 2021 1:00 am

Lambert embraces holiday

KRISTIN M. HALL | Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Country star Miranda Lambert readily admits she doesn't really like Christmas music.

The only thing that would get her in the spirit to do a holiday record was singing with her two best gal pals from the Pistol Annies, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley.

“If there was ever a time I would think a Christmas album was fun, it would be with these two girls, for sure,” said the Texas-born singer.

“Hell of Holiday” is the album for the holiday survivors, the folks like Lambert who are a little more sarcastic than sentimental but still can find the meaning of the season through all the tinsel. The trio of singers bring both humor and harmony as they celebrate with hillbilly relatives, get caught up in the hustle and sing Jesus a “Happy Birthday” song.

“We are all sad song lovers, so there's some moments on this record that have either some dark humor or some sad song undertones,” Lambert said.

The three wrote the 10 original songs at Lambert's farm around the holidays last year, penning songs together around bonfires.

On “Snow Globe,” the trio capture the magic of a white Christmas to hold onto all year long, backed by electric guitars, a saxophone solo and handclaps. On “Harlan County Coal,” Presley sings about lazy husbands, shotgun shells as ornaments and scraping by to afford both presents and the light bill.

“That's just like a really hardcore hillbilly Christmas song,” Presley said.

Althugh they wanted to incorporate some classic Christmas production, with bells, saxophones and organs, they still wanted the songs to sound like their other albums.

“A couple of songs on the record, I mean, technically, if you take them off of a Christmas album, you wouldn't even know that they were a Christmas song, which is something that I thought added a bit of Annies to it,” Presley said.

They'll give their first TV performance of their holiday music when they appear on “CMA Country Christmas” at 8 p.m. tonight on ABC.

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