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'The Kacey Musgraves Christmas Show' Revives A Classic Holiday Tradition

"It was important for me to stay away from [religious themes with] this special, because I think there's a lot of other things that a lot of different people could enjoy about the holidays," Musgraves says.

Kacey Musgraves, the Grammy award-winning country music star, released a Christmas special last month on Amazon Prime's video streaming service. It features Musgraves and with her band, along with special guests including Lana Del Rey, Leon Bridges, Zooey Deschanel, James Corden, the Radio City Rockettes and so many more.

Musgraves previously released A Very Kacey Christmas in 2016, before her star profile went supernova. She thought The Kacey Musgraves Christmas Show "would be a fun way to bring my old Christmas album back in the form of those old Christmas specials that we love." Musgraves emulates those specials of yore — hosted by the likes of Bing Crosby and Judy Garland — with retro elements such as a laugh track, shots of families watching at home on old box televisions and glimpses of the control room.

The singer also brings back her holiday original, "Christmas Makes Me Cry." Musgraves wrote the song after one of her grandmothers died right before Christmas a few years ago. She says it changed the holiday for her for a while and is "hard to sing sometimes."

Overall, the camp and energy of the performances keep the good feelings going. "There's a warmth there that I always find really pleasing about Christmas," Musgraves says. "There's a lot of reasons that we can all find the holiday stressful and annoying, but I think that we could all use more joy."

Hear her full conversation with NPR's Scott Simon in the audio player above.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.