Day 1: Dolly Parton – Holly Dolly Christmas

Country star Dolly Parton has released her latest Christmas album, the first one in 30 years entitled Holly Dolly Christmas. There are seven originals and six covers of Christmas classics. There are extra songs for different versions of this record. 

The music is Holiday with a Country twist. There’s an incredible variety of instruments: the piano, the guitar (various kinds), the drums, the keys, the fiddle, the bass, etc. The songs are upbeat and full of Christmas joy. The compositions having a Country style gives the tunes a cozy feel. The music is a mix of the classic Christmas beats with a modern Country touch that offers the album a wonderful and whimsy musical flavour. The seven originals have a nostalgic feel because they are classic Christmas hits by Dolly Parton, with new compositional details. It is impressive to hear a Country take on songs that are, for example, traditional or pop. The compositions are phenomenal.

Dolly Parton’s voice is soulful and cheerful. She has fantastic duets with Michael Bublé (Cuddle Up, Cozy Down Christmas), Jimmy Fallon (All I Want For Christmas Is You), Miley Cyrus (Christmas Is), Billy Ray Cyrus (Christmas Where We Are), Willie Nelson (Pretty Paper) and Randy Parton (You Are My Christmas). Her performances of these songs capture the Christmas essence nicely.

The lyrics of the seven original tunes are incredible and poetic. They are intricate and poetic.
Christmas Is (featuring Miley Cyrus) has a positive message about love, giving to others/generosity, and time with loved ones.
Cuddle Up, Cozy Down Christmas (with Michael Bublé) is romantic and sweet. It parallels Michael Bublé’s crooner music style well. 
Christmas on the Square is a cute reference to square dancing in the south. It’s full of joy and Christmas cheer, a Country twist to this Holiday. 
    Circle of Love is a poetic song that honours Jesus Christ with well-written lyrics. 
Coming Home For Christmas is a sweet romantic Christmas song about a woman’s journey home after a long absence, reuniting with family and friends. It feels personal and from the heart. Christmas Where We Are (with Billy Ray Cyrus)  is a romantic song about celebrating Christmas with loved ones, no matter where you are. 
You Are My Christmas (with Randy Parton) is another romantic song about the importance of celebrating Christmas with loved ones. It’s also a metaphor for a significant other being the most important to them in this Holiday season.
For those who have Amazon streaming, there are two extra songs from this Christmas album: The Wish Book (also available on the 8-track version) and Three Candles. If you have iTunes or Apple music, there’s a bonus track entitled I Still Believe.
The Wish Book is about realizing one’s dreams if you believe and know that you can’t have everything all at once, but it all comes at the right moment. It’s an inspirational song with an important life lesson.
The song Three Candles is about the light in dark times and wishing well to others and oneself during Christmas. There’s beauty in this simplistic song. 
The bonus track I Still Believe is an inspirational song about having faith during difficult times, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. It describes the sentiment of looking forward to life without masks and being able to gather together with hugs and kisses, as well as singing and dancing. There’s an incredible feeling of hope and solidarity in the song.
The lyrics are inspirational and full of hope. Dolly Parton, Kent Well, Jada Roberts, and Barry Jobe did an excellent job writing these songs honouring the Christmas spirit. 

The album Holly Dolly Christmas is available.

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