During Thursday night's (Dec. 3) CMA Country Christmas TV special, fans were stunned by country music veteran's Martina McBride's gorgeous duet with Christian music's songwriter and singer Michael W. Smith. Smith and McBride performed the hymn "What Child Is This?" together.
The performance was backgrounded by a beautiful image of a church's stained glass windows, McBride sang the hymn while Smith played the piano and added harmonies. A bevy of strings joined in for the latter half of the song.
McBride and Smith perform "What Child Is This?" together on Smith's 2014 Christmas album, The Spirit of Christmas. Smith's fourth holiday project, the record also features duets with Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town, Lady Antebellum, Jennifer Nettles and Vince Gill, as well as appearances from Bono and Michael McDonald.
Earlier in the night, McBride performed "White Christmas," earning a standing ovation from the crowd. Jennifer Nettles, the event's host, called the performance, "a Christmas gift to us all."
Here's part of our review of Smith's festive album: "Unlike other Yuletide recordings where songs are just thrown together in an ad hoc fashion, the sequencing of the songs here tell a story. Commencing with a childlike awe of the magical beauty of Christmas the album progressively traverses into the season's real meaning. Of the earlier segment of the record, Smith's duet with Vince Gill on "Christmas Time is Here" is noteworthy. Sounding a little deeper than his normal high tenor, Vince Gill joins Smith on a languid laid back jazzy rendition of "Christmas Time is Here." Though Hillary Scott of Lady Antebellum is in tip top condition vocally on "White Christmas," there is nothing much to shout about with regards to the song's arrangement. And Martina McBride sounds literally bored in a pretty pedantic version of "What Child is This.""