Buddy & Julie Miller | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Buddy & Julie Miller




Buddy and Julie Miller have made a total of five superb "solo" albums--three for him, two for her--but nearly all of their work has been collaborative. The husband and wife perform on each other's recordings, tour as a duo, and often write songs together. Now they've finally made a recording that's actually billed that way: Buddy & Julie Miller (Hightone), which arrives in stores on Tuesday, includes three covers of tunes by Richard Thompson, Utah Phillips, and Bob Dylan--all of whom, like the Millers, borrow liberally from country--but it's on the eight originals that Buddy's soulful, scrappy honky-tonk and Julie's ethereal folkiness dovetail the way they do in concert, pulled together by the sublime vocal harmonies. The album was recorded during breaks between various tours--Buddy is Emmylou Harris's longtime guitarist--with a bunch of fine support players, including Harris, Lucinda Williams's sometime drummer Donald Lindley (in some of his final recordings), and Dylan sideman Larry Campbell on fiddle, but it's marked by the same unflashy approach as all of the couple's solo recordings. It does rock harder than any of the solo albums, though, with Buddy's tough, plainspoken guitar solos delivering a second opinion on each narrative. Fellow Nashville songwriting ace Duane Jarvis opens; his new album, Certified Miracle (Slewfoot), includes his version of "Still I Long for Your Kiss," the tune he coauthored with Lucinda Williams. Thursday, September 20, 8:30 PM, FitzGerald's, 6615 Roosevelt, Berwyn; 708-788-2118.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Lawson Little.

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