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Top 50 Groups/Duos: #48 – Joey + Rory

March 21, 2009

Members: Rory Lee Feek and Joey Martin Feek

There’s nothing like love to make a good combinations. Joey + Rory made their big break after success on CMT’s talent show Can You Duet?.However, the two love birds are not strangers to the genre, having dabbled in both songwriting and singing as individuals before making the shift to a duo. Although their career as a team in music is young, they have managed to impress both critics and fans alike with a miraculous mix of traditional and contemporary country sounds that, mixed with some excellent songwriting and powerful vocal interpretations, have made them a standout act.

Before deciding to tackle the music industry as a duo, Joey and Rory made names in the business as significant figures behind the scenes. Before forming the duo Rory worked as a songwriter penning many hits for big artists such as Blake Shelton’s “Some Beach”, “The Chain Of Love” by Clay Walker, and, most recently, “I Will” by Jimmy Wayne. With his songwriting success in place Rory began work on his own recording studio which he named Giantslayer Records and has since become a partner label with BNA.

Joey’s music career took off as one of Rory’s first recording artists, although by then their relationship was well under way. Joey recorded her debut solo project on Rory’s label in 2005 which was not a major success, but introduced the couple to the eyes of the country public. However a big star did form from Rory’s label in Blaine Larson, who became a surprise success with two top 20 albums and several top 40 hits. Blaine’s debut album Off To Join The World was Rory’s introductory foray into producing.

Despite these individual accomplishments, the married couple knew there was more that they had to offer. So in 2008 they joined the cast of CMT’s Can You Duet?and became an instant favorite. The powerful duo took a third place finish and was almost immediately signed to critically acclaimed Vanguard/Sugar Hill Records and released their debut top 40 hit “Cheater, Cheater” that same year. Their debut album The Life Of A Songdebuted in the top ten and became an instant hit. The duo’s biggest accomplishment so far however has been their nomination for best new group/duo in the 2009 ACM Awards. The duo lost to the Zac Brown Band in the fan voted award. Despite their loss, this duo has certainly earned a place as one of the best duos to hit the circuit in years.

Not only has this married couple managed to rekindle a new respect for traditional sound, but they have also brought back the feel good connection between each other that has made so many great duos in the past stand out. Coming from a second rate talent show, it’s amazing that Joey + Rory have managing to rack up sales and chart performances that even have the capability to compete with the big guns. There is something to be said about a duo with such a strong bond and a love for music that success is not the glory in the end, it’s the ability and the opportunity to do what they love together and to know that what they have to say is being heard. With this duo it’s never been about success, but about the love of the art and that makes them worthy or recognition.

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