Nominated for their first CMA as Vocal Duo of the Year for “The 45th Annual CMA Awards,” The Civil Wars will face tough competition in a category that only three bands have laid claim to since 1992. The four-year reigning duo Sugarland is amongst the nominees as well as past winner Montgomery Gentry (2000), former nominee Steel Magnolia, and fellow first time nominee Thompson Square. The thankful duo tweeted their reactions from across the ocean, where they are traveling on their first 35-date headlining tour.
“@thecivilwars: Thanks for all of the kind words about the CMA nomination for Vocal Duo of the Year!”
More About The Civil Wars
The only consensus in placing The Civil Wars into a musical genre is the lack of consensus. A folk-pop-indie-Americana duo with a country twang and a minimalist approach to acoustic accompaniments, The Civil Wars are hardly your cookie-cutter coeds singing about love and heartbreak. But then again, a lot about this unique pair seems paradoxical. Joy Williams hails from California, home of the Beach Boys, while guitarist partner John Paul White is Alabama-bred and was raised on iconic countrymen like Kris Kristofferson and Johnny Cash. They met at a Nashville songwriter’s retreat in 2008 and by defying logic, the duo has become an international sensation.
Since their inception, The Civil Wars have broken away from standard paradigms and forged a path of their own. They put out their first album, Live at Eddie’s Attic, from the recordings of a June 2009 show that they played in Decatur, Ga. Although it was only the second time that Williams and White performed together, the album established them as two organic personalities with immaculate talent and a proclivity for harmonious discord. Later that year, the duo’s breakout single, “Poison and Wine,” aired on an episode of ABC’s popular television series Grey’s Anatomy. Two days later, they released a 4-song EP, Poison and Wine, which debuted at No.4 on iTunes and was named the iTunes “Best 2010” singer/songwriter album.
The Civil Wars’ first studio album Barton Hollow, released in February 2011, topped music charts, reaching No.12 on the Billboard 200, No.2 on Billboard Folk albums, No.3 on Billboard rock albums, No.4 on Billboard’s Indie albums, and claiming the No.1 spots for both Billboard’s and iTunes’ digital albums charts. Clearly, The Civil Wars’ eclectic styling appeals to fans and critics across an array of formats. In fact, between their distinctive style, inspiring lyrics, and modest personalities, The Civil Wars have garnered artists like Taylor Swift and U.K.-born Adele as some of their most vocal champions. Swift took to her twitter to declare them as “[her] favorite duet,” while Adele blogged raves about the couple before inviting them to collaborate with her on several tour dates, “they are by far the BEST live band I have EVER seen. They are magical, stunning, they make my heart hurt but make it a bit stronger at the same time too!”