That’s Not A Girl, That’s Ira Louvin

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“I’ve got something here I want you to hear.” According to Emmylou Harris, that’s how Gram Parsons introduced her to the music of the Louvin Brothers, and while she loved the sound, she wasn’t quite sure what to make of it at first. “Who,” she asked Gram, “is that girl singing the high part?” “That’s not a girl,” Gram replied, “that’s Ira Louvin.” And the rest, as the saying goes, is history.

It’s hard to imagine that the Louvin Brothers’ music would have the audience it has today without the efforts of Gram and Emmylou: most of the brothers’ back catalog is still in print, and Charlie, at the age of 81, is currently touring (schedule here) behind a new album. Gram Parsons revived The Christian Life with The Byrds and Cash on the Barrelhead on the classic Grievous Angel, and Emmylou has covered a bunch of Louvin Brothers tunes as well.

Emmylou is just finishing up a tour with a show called Three Girls and Their Buddy. The three girls are Emmylou, Shawn Colvin and Patty Griffin, and their buddy is Buddy Miller. Their last stop is in Boston next Sunday and I’m looking forward to being there. Until then, here’s Emmylou and Charlie Louvin, with Vern Gosdin, performing the Louvins’ Love and Wealth. Please enjoy.

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