Samiksha Jaiswal

The Little Girl

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B-side  "Brand New Me"
Format  CD single, 7" single
Genre  Country
Released  August 29, 2000
Recorded  2000
Length  3:53

"The Little Girl" is a song written by Harley Allen and recorded by American country music artist John Michael Montgomery. The song features harmony vocals by bluegrass musicians Alison Krauss and Dan Tyminski, both members of Alison Krauss and Union Station. It was released in August 2000 as the lead single from the album Brand New Me. The song became Montgomery's seventh and last No. 1 hit to date on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, and his first chart-topper since 1995's "Sold (The Grundy County Auction Incident)". The song also reached No. 35 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Contents

Background and writing

The song is based on an urban legend of the type referred to by website Snopes.com as "glurge" (fabricated and overly sentimental). Snopes.com states that the legend itself is unverifiable, and would have otherwise passed into obscurity had it not been for songwriter Harley Allen who, after receiving a copy of the story from his brother, wrote the song in under fifteen minutes.

Content

"The Little Girl" tells of an unnamed young girl born to an alcoholic father and drug-addict mother. The couple regularly fought in front of her (usually with her hiding in fear behind the living room couch), showed her no attention or affection, and were not interested in religion.

One night, the fight escalated to a horrific outcome—the girl (while again hiding behind the couch) would witness the murder-suicide of her parents (Dad killed Mom, then himself). This resulted in "some people from the city" taking the girl to another home, one completely different from her prior one – this home featured a loving, compassionate family who regularly attended church.

On the girl's first visit to church, while in Sunday School, she noticed on the wall a picture of Jesus hanging on the cross. She commented that she did not know who the man was, but knew that he had to have come down from the cross—as she recognized the man as the one who comforted her while she witnessed her parents' violent deaths.

Critical reception

Chuck Taylor, of Billboard magazine reviewed the song favorably saying that "every element flows seamlessly together, from the understated production and the tendered melody to Montgomery's carefully measured performance."

Chart positions

"The Little Girl" reached number one on the Billboard country chart in late 2000, holding the position for three weeks. It was Montgomery's seventh number-one hit and first since "Sold (The Grundy County Auction Incident)" in 1995. The song also reached number one on the RPM country singles chart in Canada, and was that publication's last country number-one hit as RPM closed in November 2000.

References

The Little Girl Wikipedia


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