“The Little Girl” exemplifies a story of a dysfunctional family’s plight . John Michael Montgomery‘s soap opera tale hits a disastrous final note, as he always do in his songs. This poignant track details a young girl hiding behind the couch while her drug-addled mom and alcoholic dad insensitively exchange. Montgomery remains even-keeled as the fable reaches its spiritual conclusion. The song went even more outstanding having  harmonies from bluegrass stars Alison Krauss and Dan Tyminski on the background.

The Little Girl, in details

With subtlety and taste, the song tells the story of a child whose parents died in a murder-suicide. She was brought in a foster home, and attended Sunday School for the first time. That day, she recognized, in a picture, “the Man up there on that cross” as the one who held her close to His side on the night her parents died.

Through the power of the internet, the story circulated via e-mail and social media before Allen captured it in a song. Upon hearing the song, Montgomery sat “blown away by it” but didn’t necessarily regard it as a candidate for a lead off single from his new album.

“It touches on religion. It touches on drug abuse, on people dying, a little girl being involved in the middle of all this, but they don’t preach it to you,” “It’s not in somebody’s face. It’s not telling anybody out there bad, bad, bad,” he continues. As long as you’re not preaching to people, or anything like that, people like stories like that.”

The song’s influence

“The Little Girl” has immediately marked different effect to anyone who may hear it. Whenever Montgomery sings the song, it’s “unbelievable how quiet it gets,” he says. Some almost cry after the performance, or some may just sit there and reflect.

For the record, “The Little Girl” reached number one on the Billboard country chart in late 2000, holding the position for three weeks. Montgomery held the song as his seventh number-one hit and first since  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.

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