5 Questions With ... The Civil Wars

Indie duo visits The Recording Academy
  • Photo: The Recording Academy
    The Civil Wars' Joy Williams and John Paul White
June 24, 2011 -- 11:15 am PDT
GRAMMY.com

Indie folk duo the Civil Wars were the recent guests for an installment of The Recording Academy's 5 Questions With … series. Held at The Academy's headquarters in Santa Monica, Calif., the duo discussed music education, their songwriting process, the influence of social media, advice for young musicians, and recording their debut full-length album, Barton Hollow, among other topics.

"I always say that if you can do anything else, then do it," said vocalist/guitarist John Paul White when asked about his advice for aspiring artists. "But if you can't, then [playing music] is the life for you." Vocalist/pianist Joy Williams added, "Just do what you love and be as excellent as you can, and I believe that your music will find a home."


After meeting at a songwriting workshop in Nashville in 2008, Alabama native White and California native Williams formed the Civil Wars. They played their first live performance as a duo at the French Quarter Cafe in Nashville, and their second at Eddie's Attic in Decatur, Ga., subsequently releasing a digital album, Live At Eddie's Attic, in 2009. In 2010 the duo was featured as one of Paste magazine's Best of What's Next. In February the duo released Barton Hollow, including the single "Poison & Wine," which was featured on an episode of "Grey's Anatomy." Barton Hollow peaked at No. 12 on the Billboard 200. On May 10 the Civil Wars performed at The Recording Academy Nashville Chapter's 13th Annual GRAMMY Block Party And Membership Celebration. The duo is currently on tour throughout the United States.

Come back to GRAMMY.com soon to view the Civil Wars' exclusive performance at The Recording Academy. For updates and breaking news, please visit The Academy's social networks on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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