Two of the songs on American country-folk singer-songwriter Emmylou Harris' 22nd major-label studio album, Hard Bargain, look back at her time with friends. Whilst "The Road" remembers her relationship with country rock legend Gram Parsons, "Darlin' Kate" is a tribute to Emmylou's friend, the late singer-songwriter Kate McGarrigle who died of a rare form of cancer in 2010. "Kate was such a force of nature, so bright, so funny," Harris recalled to UK newspaper The Independent. "I never had a sister and really that's how I thought of her. When she died, everyone was gathered around her at her bedside, and my song is just a farewell letter. I did hold her hand and I did kiss her brow..."