Artist: Hailey Whitters
Hometown: Shueyville, Iowa; Nashville, Tennessee
Song: “Meet Me Under the Mistletoe”
Label: Pigasus Records/Big Loud Records/Songs & Daughters
In Their Words: “My producer and I spent a lot of time last Christmas culling through Christmas albums, and came up with an expansive list of songs we loved. But rather than rerecording standards like ‘White Christmas’ and ‘Silent Night’ that’ve been recorded by many other artists, we wanted to focus on shedding some light on some of our lesser-known favorites with the hopes of introducing these great songs to a new audience. ‘New Baby For Christmas’ was initially recorded in 1957 and I thought was fun as it’s kind of a honky-tonk heartbreak/cheating song disguised as a Christmas song, and I’m a die-hard Randy Travis fan and have loved ‘Meet Me Under the Mistletoe’ for years — both seemed to be great vehicles for the high-class honky-tonk vibe we were going for.
“We recorded live in historic RCA Studio A with an all-star cast of Nashville session musicians — heavily-featured steel guitar, fiddle and upright bass — using minimal modern post-production techniques, and I even sang on the floor in the same spot Dolly used to sing to capture the natural reverb of the room. There’s so much history in that room we wanted to capture and it felt like everyone was really feeling the spirit.” — Hailey Whitters