I work with my husband. I have avoided it for many years because we are very different people. And that is glaringly obvious enough in our personal life. We have learned to adapt to each others styles on stage. But in the beginning it was kind of rough. One area that still chaffes is the set list.
I like to make a plan and stick with it. So I rarely veer off the set list. Bruce throws caution to the wind. Four songs into the show and he might stop looking at the setlist altogether. Bruce thinks his ability to do this makes him better than me. Not that he has ever told me this, but I just know.
Fact is, we each think the way we do things makes us better than the other one.
One night though, Bruce was the clear … Read More »
For Audio cLick here: Partners In Life, Two Country Singers Finally Meet In The Studio 9:14 by NPR Staff
Johnny and June, George and Tammy, Conway and Loretta, Gram and Emmylou: Country music has a long tradition of co-ed duet partners, and it’s about to welcome one more pair. Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison both had blossoming solo careers when they wed back in 1996, but they haven’t recorded a full album together — until now. Their first LP as collaborators is called Cheater’s Game, and they discuss it here with weekend on All Things Considered guest host Don Gonyea.
On the lack of classic male/female cover songs on the album
Robison: “We’ve had a couple of people that said they were surprised or perhaps happy that we didn’t just go with some of the classic duets that we all know and … Read More »
Kelly Willis And Bruce Robison: ‘Let’s Do This Right’
Kelly Willis performs in the Soundcheck studio. (Michael Katzif / WNYC)
Country music is known for its famous couples: Johnny Cash and June Carter, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, George Jones and Tammy Wynette, and many more. But not all country couples work together. Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis have largely worked apart in their nearly two decades of marriage, Robison writing #1 hits for the likes of Tim George Strait and The Dixie Chicks, and Willis singing her way through a career that has lasted two decades.
Now, they come together for Cheater’s Game, an album that’s half originals and half covers of tunes by respected country songwriters like Dave Alvin and Hayes Carll.
“I guess this was a little bit special,” says Willis about their song choices. “For us to be making a … Read More »
By BARRY MAZOR
After Years of Marriage, a Partnership
Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison have been married since 1996 and, individually, they have been among the best-known and most successful performers and songwriters on the Austin, Texas, music scene longer than that. She’s had six albums of her own; he’s had eight. They’ve toured with combined solo shows, made guest appearances on each other’s records and recorded a few Christmas songs together. But the new “Cheater’s Game”—released last week on their own Premium Records imprint, through Thirty Tigers Records—is their first full-album collaboration. While they share so much in common, including the raising of their four children, ages 7 to 12 (a pursuit that had occupied most of Ms. Willis’s time in recent years), their own musical tendencies have been distinct enough that finding the combined sonic sweet spot that could … Read More »
Kelly and Bruce kicked of the release of Cheaters Game with an appearance on Imus In The Morning in NYC
What they deserve: Robsion and Willis release terrific new record together
By Michael Corcoran
They came for the music, Kelly Willis from Washington, D.C., in 1987 and Bruce Robison from Bandera a couple years later. The “rockabilly filly” and the Hill Country songsmith started dating in 1991, married in 1996 and had four kids in a span of five years. With Willis signed to MCA in the ’90s and Robison having his songs taken to the top of the country charts by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill (“Angry All the Time”), George Strait (“Wrapped,” “Desperately”) and the Dixie Chicks (“Travelin’ Soldier”), Nashville paid the bills. But Austin has been home, without any thought of relocation all these years.
The musical culmination of all that history is “Cheater’s Game,” the first album credited to the duo of Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison, which comes … Read More »
“Cheater’s Game” is the couple Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis’s first full-length album together.
By ANDY LANGER
Published: February 9, 2013
Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis have been married for 16 years, but they will tie the knot professionally on Tuesday with the release of “Cheater’s Game,” their first full-length album together.
Both Mr. Robison and Ms. Willis have developed successful solo careers. He is a sought-after songwriter who has written three No. 1 Billboard Country hits, and Ms. Willis has recorded a half-dozen albums, establishing herself as a key player in the Americana music movement.
Over the years, the two have occasionally collaborated — Ms. Willis has covered Mr. Robison’s songs on her albums, and they play a popular annual holiday concert together — but they have avoided entangling careers, in part, Mr. Robison said, because it is hard for a couple with four … Read More »
The Bandera Way
Kelly Willis, Bruce Robison, and the Hill Country courting method
BY MARGARET MOSER, FRI., FEB. 8, 2013
The Bandera Way
Scenes from a marriage in four acts.
BY MARGARET MOSER
Feels like April on this warm and sunny day, but it’s late January. At a comfortable Hyde Park address, bright natural light pours in through the large windows of a house owned by the reigning couple of Austin country music, Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison.
After years of appearing on each other’s albums and performing together, the pair finally releases its collaborative bow, Cheater’s Game. With a nearly equal mix of covers and original compositions, the LP spotlights the two at their absolute best: Kelly with her raw silk vocals and Bruce wielding his mercury pen. When their voices join in harmony, as they will on tour, it’s heaven sent.
Kelly and Bruce’s lives entwine … Read More »
Kelly and Bruce did an On The Streets Segment with Suzanne Alexander while in Nashville. The segment will air on Valentines Day.
Bruce and Kelly with Country Music Disc Jockey Hall of Famer Bill Cody. This was a great interview.
In three short weeks Cheaters Game has shot to the top spot on the Americana Charts.
Kelly and Bruce joined Kris Kristofferson and friends in Nashville at Sirius radio taping.
A whopping 46 Americana radio stations added Cheaters Game to their playlist this week. In addition Cheaters Game was tied for most added at AAA radio with Richard Thompson. Bruce and Kelly are off and running.
By Jim Caliguiri
Earlier this year, Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis took over the Continental Club Gallery on Thursdays. Along with a crack band, the husband and wife team put on what I thought was the best local act I’ve seen so far this year. Great songs from both their catalogs, some new tunes, and a couple of wisely chosen covers combined for a knock-out set.
For summer, they’ve moved to Antone’s on Tuesday nights and, with the July 4 holiday tomorrow, tonight’s gig should be a star-spangled event. I asked Robison what’s different about the new residency besides the bigger room, and he replied that they’re trying to make it just as intimate as the tiny Gallery gigs.
“We came up with the idea of a theme that’s become a big part of the show,” he says. “The reason that the shows … Read More »
Due to illness, we are rescheduling Bruce & Kellys’ performance for Friday, September 7th, 2012, in Daniels Hall. Tickets for the August 3rd show will be honored at the September show.
If you have already purchased tickets, and are unable to attend the September 7th performance, please contact Matt Soyka, Box Office Manager, at [email protected] for a refund.
Thanks for your understanding and patience. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused.
Bruce, Kelly and Swallow Hill Music
She was the queen of post-modern cred-country. He was the aw-shucks singer/songwriter with the #1 records on George Strait, the Dixie Chicks, and Tim McGraw with Faith Hill. They were the first couple from Texas’ alt-country scene, and separate but equal propositions with their own careers to tend to.
Last South By Southwest, Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis did the unthinkable: they teamed up for the Americana Music Association’s show at Antone’s. More a merging of solo acts than a genuine duo, they were endearing in their awkwardness and engaging in their off-the-cuff camaraderie.
Ahhh, what a difference a year makes!
In the Continental Gallery’s intimate upstairs space, feeling nearly like someone’s living room, the pair were joined by an upright bass player, a drummer with a cocktail kit, and a utility player who can make a steel sob, snarl, bleed, and leave … Read More »
Bruce and Kelly sing Border Radio at the kicked off of KGSR’s Shady Grove music series on Thursday 4/12.
New song from upcoming album, Cheaters Game. Look for a release in early 2013.
If country and western is your thing, you really won’t be disappointed by the Country Rendez-vous Festival in Craponne-sur-Arzon. The organisers have been very successful in recent years at attracting top talents from Nashville and Austin, as well as from all over the US and Europe.
The festival has grown in size and now attracts 35,000 people, big enough, but not too big – the event still has a wonderful family atmosphere.
But what really makes the rendez-vous special is the setting – a natural amphitheatre at 1000m (nights are cool) surrounded by pine forests with incredible views of the mountains of the Velay and Ardèche. So if it is country, bluegrass or zydeco you’re into, or just the great outdoors, come on down to one of the most scenic hoe-downs this side of the Atlantic. Yeehaa
Event details can change
Please check with … Read More »