While most people are slowing down to relax during the holidays, Jennifer Nettles is ramping up. As if the Georgia native didn’t have enough to do this holiday season with the release of her new To Celebrate Christmas album, performing select dates on tour in support of the album and starring in Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors TV special, Jennifer will also be hosting CMA Country Christmas, which airs Nov. 28 on ABC.
“This will be my seventh year hosting the CMA Country Christmas show,” Jennifer tells Nash Country Daily. “So I’ve had a good bit of time to be like, ‘Hey, I’ve sung a million Christmas songs, which ones do I like and which ones don’t I like and why don’t I make a Christmas record—it’s about darn time.'”
CMA Country Christmas, taped in front of a live audience at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, gathers stars together to celebrate the holidays in song. The result of Jennifer’s hosting duties may have led to the making of her current Christmas album, but the show will see Jennifer recreating the collaborations from her album, including “Little Drummer Boy” with Idina Menzel and “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” with Andra Day.
“On the CMA Country Christmas I’ll be performing a couple of songs from the collaborations off that [album]. To Celebrate Christmas is more rootsy and definitely me. There are some horns on it, but I would definitely call it more like Muscle Shoals sound that you would hear. But it’s organic and more rootsy. I have a collaboration with Idina Menzel—we did ‘Little Drummer Boy.’ The McCrary sisters sing back-up and they are just fantastic. They are on some of the tracks too to offer that sound.”
To Celebrate Christmas is out now and you can catch Jennifer on select dates in support of her album as well as hosting CMA Country Christmas on Nov. 28 on ABC 8 p.m. ET.
To Celebrate Christmas Track Listing:
1. “Go Tell It On The Mountain”
2. “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (featuring Andra Day)
3. “Little Drummer Boy” (featuring Idina Menzel)
4. “Celebrate Me Home”
5. “Circle of Love”
6. “Do You Hear What I Hear”
7. “Count Your Blessings Instead Of Sheep”
8. “O Holy Night”
9.”Merry Christmas with Love”
10 “The First Noel”
Photo by ABC/Heidi Gutman