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LeAnn Rimes wishes ‘Today Is Christmas’

Grammy winner will perform in Kamas

What’s Grammy Award-winning country singer LeAnn Rimes’s favorite time of the year? Christmas, of course.

“There is just something magical about it,” Rimes told The Park Record during a phone call from the road in Nebraska. “For me it comes down to what it does, because it changes people.

“I feel like we walk around closed off from each other and no one talks with each other, unless they are [competing with] each other on Black Friday,” she said with a laugh. “I feel like there is a joy that comes upon people that they struggle to find throughout the year.”

That’s why she is continuing her “Today Is Christmas” tour that will make a stop at the DeJoria Center in Kamas on Dec. 16.

The concert was inspired by her 2015 release “Today Is Christmas,” which hit No. 2 on both Billboard’s U.S. Top Holiday Albums and U.S. Independent Albums after its release.

The concert also includes songs from her 2014 album “One Christmas: Chapter 1.”

“This is my third year of doing a Christmas tour,” Rimes said. “We did the East Coast and the West Coast, and now, we’re doing the Midwest and hitting a few other areas.”

Next year, the tour will visit the south.

“We’re hitting the whole country and it’s been fun because we get to break it up and see different parts of the United States,” Rimes said. “Everything has it’s own vibe.”

The singer — known for her hits “Blue,” “How Do I Live” and “‘Til We Ain’t Strangers Anymore,” a duet with Bon Jovi — said the Christmas concerts have a different vibe than her regular shows.

“I’m always joyful at this time of the year and I hope that comes across on stage,” she said. “[Also] I think people bring a different type of energy to the show. I think their hearts are more open during this time of the year.”

Selecting songs for the Christmas concert set list is always a challenge.

“It is hard to narrow it down because there are so many fantastic Christmas songs, but we pull from the last two records, mostly, and we touch up on a couple of my hits that we weave throughout the show,” she said. “Those songs are done in medley form and go into Christmas songs.”

The songs on the list are ones that move Rimes, but she is known to change things up a bit.

“I’m one of those people who has a set list, but all of a sudden I may want to do a random Christmas song I heard on the radio,” she said with a laugh. “We’ll learn it before the show.

“I’m notorious for doing that,” she said with another laugh. “And while the show is basically the same, every night gets switched up a little one way or another.”

Although Rimes does have a new album called “Remnants” that will be released in the U.S. in February, she doesn’t think she’ll perform anything from that, including the lead-off single, a cover of Brandi Carlile’s “The Story.”

“Then again, we might do that,” Rimes said. “I think we’re sticking to the Christmas music and the classics, but like I said, you never know what will happen. Sometimes my fans call out songs during the show, and if something feels right, we may do it.”

As far as the holiday goes, one of Rimes’s favorite Christmas song is “Holly Jolly Christmas.”

“There is something about it that just brightens me up, no matter what time of year I hear it,” she said.

That sentiment is one of the reasons Christmas is her favorite time of the year.

“My Godparents used to decorate the whole house and it was a big deal,” Rimes said. “I know that some of their favorite times grew with me on Christmas.”

She carries on the tradition with her husband Eddie Cibrian and her two stepsons.

“To see Christmas through their eyes is very beautiful, because there’s that wide-eyed wonder,” she said. “I think it also brings out the kid in adults.”

Rimes’ and Cibrian’s own Christmas tradition is simple.

“My husband and I got engaged on Christmas Eve, and that is a good memory,” Rimes said with another laugh. “He proposed to me on the beach and we always do something to celebrate that.

“My husband’s parents are Cuban and they will have this huge Cuban Christmas Eve,” she said. “So, we’ll usually go have a drink by the beach and then head over to his parents home after that.”

Grammy Award-winning country singer LeAnn Rimes will bring her “Today Is Christmas” to Kamas at 8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 16, at the DeJoria Center, 970 S.R. 32. Tickets range from $55 to $225 and can be purchased by visiting http://www.smithstix.com or dejoriacenter.com.


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