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Portraits Box set

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Audio CD, Box set, October 8, 1996
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$34.09 $15.95

Editorial Reviews

Compared to her sometime singing partner Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris is not an especially distinctive singer or songwriter. She lacks the raw talent to match the towering high points of Parton's career, but at the same time Harris has managed to avoid the embarrassing lapses that have plagued Parton. Harris has exhibited a deep understanding of what makes the best country music endure and a stubborn refusal to accept anything less. You can comb through her 20 albums and never find an embarrassingly corny novelty number, a shamelessly maudlin weeper, or a less-than-flawless vocal. This box set gathers all her commercial hits, staples of her live shows, prime examples of her every phase, her best collaborations with other artists, and five previously unreleased tracks. --Geoffrey Himes

Disc: 1
1. Boulder To Birmingham
2. Before Believing
3. Love Hurts
4. In My Hour Of Darkness
5. The Angels Rejoiced Last Night
6. Sleepless Nights
See all 20 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Hello Stranger
2. Everytime You Leave
3. Beneath Still Waters
4. Blue Kentucky Girl
5. To Daddy
6. Evangeline - Emmylou Harris & The Hot Band
See all 21 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. In My Dreams
2. Love Is
3. To Know Him Is To Love Him
4. The Pain Of Loving You
5. Farther Along
6. Angel Band
See all 20 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 8, 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Reprise / Wea
  • ASIN: B000002MKL
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #129,239 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Emmylou Harris Store


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Already celebrated as a discoverer and interpreter of other artists’ songs, 12-time Grammy Award–winner Emmylou Harris has, in the last decade, become admired as much for her eloquently straightforward songwriting as for her incomparably expressive singing. On Hard Bargain, her third Nonesuch disc, she offers 11 original songs—three of them co-written with Grammy– and ... Read more in Amazon's Emmylou Harris Store

Visit Amazon's Emmylou Harris Store
for 74 albums, 7 photos, discussions, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 21 customer reviews
Emmylou is one of the best female vocalists of our time.
Carmella Braniger
The songs that Emmylou Harris has been able to connect with are awesome.
Bruce P. Barten
This girl is soooo much better than Dolly Parton will ever be.
Ruthie Ann

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By raja_post on June 23, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This collection of these early works is a very strong cross-section of the immense talent that has been evident in the voice of Emmylou Harris since "Pieces of the Sky" premiered on vinyl in the pre-CD mid-1970's. From this album the Emmylou-penned 'Boulder to Birmingham' stands out along with 'Too Far Gone", 'Before Believing' and the Beatles cover 'For No One'. For those who missed the 1969 "Gliding Bird" and her collaborations with Gram Parsons and Bob Dylan, these jewels were just a hint of the rich gifts to come to the world through the instrument of Emmylou Harris. Throughout the years, Emmylou has distilled the rich emotion of country, bluegrass, roots, folk, rock and roll, and other musical genres while instilling each with an essence unmistakably 'Emmylou'.
This collection begins with the best of her first solo ablum and a strong nod toward the important influence of Gram Parsons in her life and musical sensibility. Emmylou's profound respect for other icons of songwriting such as Dolly Parton, Bill Monroe, Townes van Zandt are clear in her choice of material and her sensitive interpretations of their work.
This 3-CD set could easily be much longer without resorting to "filler" material. Some gems missing from this collection include 'She' from "Luxury Liner" (otherwise well represented), 'I Don't Have to Crawl' and 'Ashes by Now' from "Evangeline". The much-maligned "White Shoes" album is severely underrepresented with only 'In My Dreams' included. For a time it was only available in Europe (like the yet hard to find "Ballad of Sally Rose"). Though, as a "cross-over" album it was not popular, it remains one of her strongest works - AND - it's a lot of fun!
Read more ›
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By on April 17, 1999
Format: Audio CD
This box set is worth the money. Emmylou's career has presented us with one of the most eclectic collections I have heard. Every song on these three cd's stands out as classic, at least in my mind. I have never been a country music fan but Emmylou Harris not just country. There is something about the heart of her music that is not easy to explain and that is demonstrated nowhere better than in this set. I personally like "In My House Of Darkness" with Gram Parsons, but I also like "Togather Again" and "You're Still On My Mind." Actually, I like every song. I like to listen to this set when I have time to play all three cd's straight through...then I feel like I have truly been around the world of music. It's wonderful listening!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By LillyDale on May 16, 2001
Format: Audio CD
I have been a fan of Emmy's since I heard "Goodbye to Daddy" played by an AM radio station in Virginia, when I was just a kid riding to the feed store in Daddy's battered old pickup. I have owned various copies of her work, on vinyl, tape, and the blessed CD. This collection brings out some of my favorites from years passed, and some real gems that I had missed out on before. Don't worry about how "complete" this album is, or how representative of her past work. This stands alone just fine. Each song gives a slice of someone's life, a short story, expressions of joy and thanksgiving, or the chilling recognition of someone from your past. In her cover of James Taylor's Millworker, you will hear the unarticulated laments of women who realize they sold themselves short for what they thought was love. Listen to Icy Blue Heart and you hear a good man recoil in horror, but reply with compassion when he is approached by a burned-out barfly seeking refuge. Rollin' and Ramblin' (The Death of Hank Williams)is followed by the perfect companion piece, Casey's Last Ride. The Willie Nelson duet, Gulf Coast Highway, is a tribute to all couples who cling together through thick and thin, an affirmation that there are great loves existing quietly among us. Emmylou shines as always in her spiritual pieces. Angel Band, Calling My Children Home, The Angels Rejoiced Last Night, and others,are mournful and uplifting at the same time - true Appalachian expressionism. Nothing makes us feel better than to cry and sing at the same time. Although it may seem odd to follow a Bill Monroe tune with Bob Dylan, it certainly works here, with the rollicking songs Walls of Time and When I Paint My Masterpiece.Read more ›
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Christopher P. Dunn on December 1, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Contrary to what Mr. Himes writes on behalf of, Ms. Harris IS a distinctive singer and songwriter. "Boulder to Birmingham" (her signature song) and "Prayer in D" among others display a depth of feeling and vivid imagery that Dolly Parton can never hope to achieve.
This 3-CD set is an extraordinary compilation of her career, spanning almost 2 decades of her recorded work, some of which is released officially for the first time. The tracks on these CDs are not in chronological order (although close), nor do they include more recent efforts (nothing from Wrecking Ball, for instance).
However, the unreleased nuggets of gold, such as duets with her late lover Gram Parsons (in whose memory she wrote "Boulder to Birmingham"), live cuts, and other notable tracks make this compilation as important to Harris fans as the Bootleg Series is to Dylan fans.
Whether you are a fan of Emmylou Harris or a newcomer, this is a "must have."
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