In 2002, Sugarland raided radio waves and the world of country music after they first emerged in the music scene. First formed by Kristen Hall and Kristian Bush, the group soon became a trio after fellow singer-songwriter Jennifer Nettles was added as their lead vocalist. From there, they released countless successful singles and albums, such as Baby Girl, Enjoy the Ride, Want To, All I want to Do, Settlin’, Twice the Speed of Life, Stay, and Love on the Inside.
They also won awards like Top New Duo or Vocal Group (2006), Song of the Year and Single of the Year (2008), Top Vocal Duo (2009 and 2010), Favorite Breakthrough Artist (2005), Vocal Duo of the Year (2007-2011) and Duo Video of the Year (2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011).
Sadly, like some beautiful country music journeys have gone, Sugarland’s long streak of victorious music-making had to come to a sudden, unexpected halt. First, the group’s founder, Kristen Hall, suddenly left in December 2005. Although the remaining members of the group, Bush and Nettles cited that Hall’s reason for leaving was due to her desire to “stay at home and write songs”, there had been speculations that the latter was pressured into her departure. In July 2008, Hall filed a lawsuit against her former co-artists for having been deprived of equal shares and profits despite allowing Bush and Nettles to obtain equal co-ownership of the group’s service mark and trademark. In November 2010, the lawsuit was finally settled outside the court.
Then, after Jennifer Nettles gave birth to her first child, Magnus, she understandably took a break from her career. Strangely enough, however, she and her partner Kristian Bush began releasing solo albums of their own. This made fans and critics raise eyebrows, especially after Nettles almost made it seem like she had grown tired of the duo’s usual, signature sound. “I didn’t want to stagnate and turn into a caricature of an artist. I wanted to put something out that was fresh, and to me, exciting.”, shared Nettles.
But now, fast-forward to 2017, Sugarland officially announced their reunion into the music scene. The duo first made a re-appearance together during the CMA Awards After Party. They were also tasked to present the Vocal Duo of the Year award to Brothers Osborne during the recent CMA Awards. It seemed like such an awkward moment for the two—sharing the stage after over 5 years of not recording any sort of music together. Nettles broke the silence by casually and jokingly greeting Bush, “Well funny seeing you here.” In response, Bush said, “It feels like we’ve been here before, right?”
Then, in a Facebook Live video shared on November 17 on their Official Facebook page, Nettles and Bush finally revealed that they had been working together for the past days writing new songs and recording.
For now, Sugarland has kept mum about any further information detailing their upcoming collection of new songs. But their recent announcement is more than enough to keep fans at the edges of their seats and anticipate what’s to come for the duo in the years to come.
Jennifer Nettles, Kristen Hall, Kristian Bush, Sugarland
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