June 10, 2012 at 9:23 am , by Ladies' Lounge
My band, Sugarland, is named after . . .
A town in Texas. My bandmate Kristian Bush and I were looking for a name: This one sounded so upbeat. We’ve actually been to the town a couple of times now—we met the mayor and played City Hall.
When we’re on tour we always bring . . .
A yoga teacher and a chef. Not only is it good for morale, it’s good for our health. In the past we used to eat at whatever venue we were playing. We’d consume a lot of meat on a stick.
My new ABC reality show Duets . . .
I’m on it with Kelly Clarkson, John Legend and Robin Thicke. We each pick two contestants to sing duets with, then compete against one another. I like that I perform with the contestants—it’s not just about sitting back and judging someone.
Earliest performance memory . . .
Singing with the church choir in my hometown of Douglas, Georgia. Seeing people perform something with all their heart taught me authenticity. When you don’t believe in what you’re singing, people know it.
Guilty pleasure . . .
Piggy Popcorn and Piggy Pecans from the Loveless Cafe in Nashville. Basically it’s popcorn and pecans cooked in bacon renderings so they have this sweet-salty-smoky thing going on … Honey, if you ever want something that’s Southern, that’s Southern.
Philosophy I live by . . .
Be grateful—and be your best self.
Nettles calls or emails her mom nearly every day. “She’s my sounding board and my biggest adviser.”
Sugarland donates $1 of every concert ticket they sell to the Shalom Foundation, which helps the poor in Guatemala. “I did humanitarian work there during and after college, so it has a special meaning to me.”
She’s a coffee junkie. “I have a French press, a grinder and a milk frother. I love the smell of coffee, the warmth of it, the whole ritual.”
May 31, 2012 at 8:00 am , by Ladies' Lounge
Here at the LHJ offices, we love to listen to good country music and Sugarland—which consists of bandmates Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush—is one of our favorites. And even though the Grammy-winning duo hasn’t released a new album since 2010, they’re satiating fans this summer with an interactive “in the hands of the fans” tour where fans can make song requests for each show, so every night is a brand new set. Jennifer Nettles took some time out of her busy schedule (she also stars on ABC’s new show, Duets) to speak with us for July’s In My Words interview, and she was nice enough to sign copies of their most recent album, The Incredible Machine, for three lucky fans to win! So if you’re a big Sugarland fan, here’s your chance to get an autographed copy! And if you’re new to their music, this is the perfect opportunity to get acquainted. Enter to win by leaving a comment on this blog post. Only one entry per person, per email address. Good luck!
February 13, 2012 at 11:06 am , by Lauren Piro
On his new duet album, Tuskegee, Richie reinvents some of his greatest hits with the help of Nashville’s megastars. We asked him what it was like to collaborate with these A-list country crooners.
He’s a gentle giant, but when he opens his mouth, he sings like he’s trying to reach the back of the barn. His vocals on “You Are” were great except for one thing: When was I supposed to come in? He just owned the song.
Before Tuskegee, Shania hadn’t recorded or performed live in seven years. She was in paralysis—she was sure she’d never sing again. But she sang “Endless Love” with me and blew it away. I was so happy for her.
She can hold a note for about six and a half weeks, so I really had to rise to the occasion for our “Hello” duet. Literally, Lionel Richie had to put on his helmet and go into combat on that vocal.
I couldn’t get him to sing any other song but “My Love,” and he knew it better than I did! That was the big compliment to me while recording this album. I’d give each one of the singers lyrics, and they’d ask “Why are you giving me these? I know the song by heart.”