Edit
Emmylou Harris Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (3) | Trivia (9) | Personal Quotes (18)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 2 April 1947Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Nicknames Emmy
Em
Height 5' 5" (1.65 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Emmylou Harris was born on April 2, 1947 in Birmingham, Alabama, USA. She was previously married to Paul Kennerley, Brian Ahern and Tom Slocum.

Spouse (3)

Paul Kennerley (1985 - 1993) (divorced)
Brian Ahern (9 January 1977 - 1984) (divorced) (1 child)
Tom Slocum (1969 - 1970) (divorced) (1 child)

Trivia (9)

Won her 7th Grammy for Best Contemporary Folk Album "Wrecking Ball" [February 1996]
Children: Mika Hallie Slocum, born March 15, 1970 M.T. Ahern, born September 9, 1979.
Ranked #22 on VH1's 100 Greatest Women of Rock N Roll
Has won 12 Grammy awards.
Has collaborated on the albums of Linda Ronstadt, Dolly Parton, Vince Gill, Neil Young, Bob Dylan (her vocals are prominently featured on his 1975 album Desire), Roy Orbison, Ryan Adams, Elvis Costello, Bright Eyes, Mark Knopfler, Anne Murray, and Willie Nelson. Performed duets on a Gram Parsons tribute album with Beck, Sheryl Crow and The Pretenders.
While performing in a Washington D.C. coffeehouse, she was discovered by former Byrds member Chris Hillman, who recommended her to Gram Parsons for his first solo album, 'GP'. Harris toured as a member of Parsons' band, The Flying Burrito Brothers, in 1973, and recorded on their album 'Grievous Angel'. After Parsons died of overdose, Harris was devastated and wrote her most well-known song 'Boulder to Birmingham'. Three more of their duets were included on another posthumous Parsons album, 'Sleepless Nights', in 1976.
Was high school class valedictorian, and won a drama scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Although she has written and recorded many of her own songs, she is primarily known as an interpreter of other composers' works and as a backing vocalist and duet partner for other artists.
Is a Vegetarian and supporter of PETA.

Personal Quotes (18)

Animals have a much better attitude to life and death than we do. They know when their time has come. We are the ones that suffer when they pass, but it's a healing kind of grief that enables us to deal with other griefs that are not so easy to grab hold of.
On her one-sided conversations with her pets: "If I'm crazy, I'm blissfully so!"
"[I'm] an excellent ex-wife [with] a wonderful relationship with my two husbands. Paul [Kennerly] and Brian [Brian Ahern] are probably my two best friends".
[What she loves about singing country is] "its restraint, which intensifies the emotion in the music".
[The next two years were] a very black period". [Her daughter, Hallie, was being looked after most of the time by her parents.] "I didn't have any money. I had a sense of terrible loss. But what I also had was a fire in my belly. I wasn't going to go back to waiting table. I felt I had to be better at fronting a band.
Looking back on Gram Parsons's death: "It's a great regret of mine. How could I not have seen it coming? He was so young, and such a strong presence, I couldn't imagine he wasn't gonna be there always. The most dismaying thing to me is that I was too self-absorbed in what I was getting from Gram musically to notice what was happening to him. I was too focused on me, and discovering this incredible music."
When Gram Parsons died: "I didn't have any chance to grieve in the traditional way. First, 'Phil Kaufman' (Parsons's roadie) intercepted the air ambulance transporting the body, drove the coffin out into the desert, doused it in kerosene and burnt it, in accordance, he said, with a verbal instruction from Parsons. Next, I was told I would not be welcome at the memorial service in New Orleans. Gram's wife was deeply suspicious of me. She'd already vetoed his plan to put my name and image next to his on the cover of Grievous Angel. Now she was barring me from the church. I was left running away from my grief. I just got in my little car and drove all over America for months, looking for people who knew Gram who could comfort me, looking for any piece of that time I could hold onto."
On touring with Gram Parsons: "Gram was always fine when we were singing together. That was one thing I could do for him. It was when I wasn't around that he seemed to get into trouble."
On joining Gram Parsons in Los Angeles in 1972: "It was a totally new world. I was a person who never had fun in high school because I was too busy being a grade-A student, and here was with people who really knew how to enjoy themselves. I was very much the country mouse, trying to be professional, always turning up on time, ready to work, while Gram seemed very untogether. This was a man who really had a vision; the problem was, he was drinking heavily. I didn't think the record would ever get made."
When she first met Gram Parsons in 1971: "When I got his call I didn't know who he was. We met at the train station. Gram was there with his new wife, Gretchen, this charming southern boy with wonderful manners and a wide smile. I was playing Clyde's (in Washington, D.C.) that night. We worked up a few numbers between sets and sang them to this tiny crowd. Gram said it sounded good and he'd call me. I thought, 'Oh, sure...'"
On studying acting on a university drama scholarship: "When I was singing, it felt so real. Whereas when I was acting, I was just acting."
I loved Johnny Cash, but the folk revival happened when I was 15. There was an electricity about it, something romantic about those ballads, whereas country music sounded boring. You have to grow up, start paying the rent and have your heart broken before you understand country. As a teenager I became obsessed with Bob Dylan. And Joan Baez! I mean, what girl back then didn't want to be her?
On growing up an Air Force brat: "We weren't part of a real community. There were people from all over, which meant there was no culture."
On refusing to add to a Gram Parsons biography by Ben Fong Torres: "I have my own biography of Gram Parsons - I don't want to be part of somebody else's."
On the male-dominated 1970s music industry's attitude toward women: "ladies were regarded as a liability: the view was, they get pregnant and they freak out on the road, they're unreliable and they don't sell."
[Producer and ex-husband] Brian Ahern and I have done things together over the years. Neither of us are the sort of people who like to stay angry, and we've been very much committed to raising our daughter.
I just turned 64. You remember back when The Beatles sang that and you thought 'I'll never be 64'? It was like it was the end of the world. Now it's not young, it's not old, It just is.
I think one of the keys to any kind of peace in the world is to live in the moment. I guess that's why I love dogs so much, because they are so in the moment. They just keep bringing you back to that.

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page