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Boulder to Birmingham

by

Emmylou Harris



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

Emmylou Harris cowrote this song with Bill Danoff after the death of Gram Parsons. The song has become famous for its heart-rending chorus:
"I would rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham/I would hold my life in his saving grace/I would walk all the way from Boulder to Birmingham/If I thought I could see, I could see your face."

These are words which anybody who has lost someone close to them can relate to, and the song has become a great source of comfort to many people.
Early in her career, Harris toured with Gram Parsons and sang on his 1973 album GP. Parsons, who was a Country-Rock innovator, mentored Harris and they became good friends. Later in 1973, they were working on an album together when Parsons died of a drug overdose.
Bill Danoff, who wrote this with Harris, formed the Starland Vocal Band and had a huge hit in 1976 with "Afternoon Delight." He also co-wrote John Denver's hit "Take Me Home Country Roads."
The Hollies recorded this for their 1976 album Write On.
A cover by American alternative rock band The Fray appears as a bonus track on the iTunes deluxe version of their third album Scars & Stories. They persuaded Harris to appear on their version but nearly fell out with the Nashville legend when working on the song with her. "We met and sat down with Emmylou," singer Isaac Slade recalled to Jam! Music. "She showed us the ropes. She scolded me a little bit and put me in my place because I was getting a little rock star and giving Emmylou advice, which is something you don't do. You listen and don't talk. And we just did it in one afternoon."
Emmylou Harris
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