Ahead of the 2018 CMA Country Christmas, readers can watch one of the evening's more melancholy, shimmering performances: Reba McEntire, who will also acts as host during the evening's holiday festivities, offered up her own rendition of Dolly Parton's "Hard Candy Christmas," delivering a moment of chilly resilience to the otherwise cozy and cheerful array of performances. Press play above to watch!

Originally included in the musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, and written by composer Carol Hall, "Hard Candy Christmas" was recorded by Parton in 1982. Its lyrics tell a story of fierce independence in the face of loneliness, and the meager Christmas cheer afforded by a tight budget and a solitary life.

In addition to her hosting duties, McEntire also performs a more uplifting number to kick off the show, outfitted in a glittering red dress and flanked by dancing children in elves' costumes. Other performers for the evening include Dan + Shay, Dustin Lynch, Brett Eldredge and many more country stars. The special also features a handful of performers across the genre spectrum who are closely associated with iconic country songs, such as Diana Krall and Tony Bennett.

2018 marks the second year in a row that McEntire has hosted the festivities, after taking over hosting duties from Jennifer Nettles, who had been a mainstay on the CMA Country Christmas stage for the previous seven years, ever since the inception of the show. The 2018 CMA Country Christmas special was recorded back in September in Nashville, Tenn., at Belmont University's Curb Event Center. The show will air on Monday night (Dec. 10) at 8PM ET on ABC.

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