Brett Eldredge can’t sing “White Christmas” without thinking about his grandmother, Jan.
Growing up, scooping the snow in her driveway was one of Eldredge’s many holiday traditions. And he dedicated the Irving Berlin classic to her live on Thursday (Dec. 14) at his annual “An Evening With Brett Eldredge” concert — his final show of the year.
“She said, ‘I’ll pay you $30,’ which was like $1 million at that point in my life,” Eldredge recalled. “I’d do the whole scooping thing for like four hours, drenched in sweat. I’d get back inside my grandmother’s house and I’m out of breath because I’ve worked so hard, and I’m so excited to make this money and make my grandmother happy.”
But instead of giving her grandson the cash for all his hard work, she gave him something better.
“She hands me an apple,” he said. “I kid you not, my grandmother handed me an apple, and I got paid with an apple for scooping the drive. I smiled, and I said, ‘I love you grandmother.'”
Thursday’s invitation-only show was held the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s event hall overlooking a glowing Nashville skyline. The night had Eldredge and Glow‘s arranger Rob Mounsey leading a small jazz ensemble through an hour of live Christmas classics including “Let It Snow,” “It’s Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas,” “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” and “Silent Night.”
Proceeds from the ticketed event will support his new charity, the Brett Eldredge Family Foundation.
Tyler Hubbard and his wife, Hayley, and John Oates were among the celebrities in the audience. A special section was reserved for patients from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. While performing the holiday album’s title track, Eldredge walked around the seated tables and did the Carlton dance from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air with one boy from the Memphis facility.