Beautiful duet comes to life as country star joins Elvis for “Blue Christmas”
Remember when the late Natalie Cole sang “Unforgettable” with her father Nat King Cole in 1992?
He had already passed away, but they still managed to turn it into a duet.
Well, now Elvis has been “resurrected” for a Christmastime duet. And we think he’d be pretty pleased with the result.
In the 1960s, 33-year-old Elvis had left the music world to work on his film career.
But as a way of returning to his roots, he recorded an intimate sit-down concert with a small audience to do an acoustic set in Los Angeles.
Of course, it was filmed – and it aired on NBC as the’68 Comeback Special.
No hits were off-limits for the special, including The King’s favorite holiday hit – “Blue Christmas.”
Originally written by Billy Hayes and Jay W. Johnson, it was originally recorded by Doye O’Dell in 1948. But Elvis’ cover is the reason we know it.
The second comeback
He’s no longer around to sing it anymore and plenty of new covers have been recorded, but in 2008, RCA Records released a new album, Christmas Duets, using Presley’s archival recording of holiday hits.
They asked modern music stars to “join him” in the duets, even re-recording the instrumentation.
The King’s vocals were masterfully re-mixed with the vocals of singers like Carrie Underwood, Amy Grant, Olivia Newton-John, and Martina McBride.
In McBride’s case, they also produced a video that made her look like she was at the ’68 concert!
And fun fact: Producer George Flanigen said they made the opposite decision in a video with Celine Dion for their American Idol duet the year before.
In that video, Elvis was taken out of the ’68 special – but they decided to put McBride IN.
A 60s vibe
McBride even dressed the part to fit it, matching her hair and makeup to the era as well.
She filmed in front of a green screen and her placement in the video was seamless.
Of course, this was well before her time, as a commenter noted.
“I just blew my daughter’s mind telling her that Martina was about a year and a half old when this was recorded. ‘That’s impossible!’”
They even kept the 60s fans in place, which occasionally look like they’re fawning over McBride – but we know their eyes are on Elvis.
Since the video was uploaded to Elvis Presley’s official YouTube channel, it’s been viewed more than 35 million times.
Of course, with so many views, there were bound to be people who weren’t fans and thought the video should be left alone – but it’s not like they changed every copy of it!
Watch it with or without McBride – it’s your choice, but this version is lovely.
Then again, we have to admit the Elvis clips were our favorite parts!
Of course, McBride has a beautiful voice and they make a great pairing – especially for this melancholy song.
It’s almost like it was mean to be a duet too.
According to Vinyl Record Memories, producer George Flanigen says it took four weeks to piece the video together.
Watch modern day technology make this beautiful duet come to life below!
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