Even though they separated more than a year ago, Joy Williams and John Paul White officially announced The Civil Wars’ divorce today. And they gave us all a little parting gift to remember them by to blunt the pain of realizing they are never, ever getting back together.
By the time the duo released its more recent album, “The Civil Wars,” in June 2013, they were already on “hiatus,” so this news comes as a surprise to no one. The Nashville-based duo burned brightly in its short time in the spotlight, winning Grammys for best country duo/group performance and best folk album in 2012 for 2011’s “Barton Hollow.” They also performed with Taylor Swift on "Safe & Sound," a T Bone Burnett-produced track on "The Hunger Games" soundtrack.
In a statement posted on their website, Williams commented, “I am saddened and disappointed by the ending of this duo, to say the very least. JP is a tremendous musician, and I will always be grateful for the music we were able to create together….Looking ahead, I’m excited to share the music that I am writing and recording in the midst of this difficult transition. I’ve loved being back in the studio, and have missed performing live. I look forward to seeing you soon.”
White added, “I would like to express sincere thanks to all who were a part of the arc of The Civil Wars—from the beginning, to the end, and all points in between. My deep appreciation goes out to all who supported, disseminated, and enjoyed the music. Whatever shape or form the next chapter takes, thanks for being a large part of this one.”
Interesting that Williams threw White a bone there and he felt no need to do the same.
They leave us with their cover of the 1930s classic ditty, “You Are My Sunshine,” which the pair recorded in 2010. It was previously only available as the B-side to the limited edition “Barton Hollow” 7” vinyl release.