The Shires formed after Ben (from Hertfordshire) appealed on Facebook for a female country singer to work with him. Crissie (from Bedfordshire), a friend of a friend, replied, came round the very next day and they discovered an instant chemistry. “We can build our own Nashville underneath these grey skies,” they sing on ‘Nashville Grey Skies’, the infectious radio hit that introduced them last summer and hoisted a flag for home-grown country music.
Both are inspired by the old-school workmanship of country music’s professional songwriters – people they would later work with on their first trip to Nashville last summer. Learning at first hand the storytelling style of classic country songs, and how to craft a catchy chorus, the duo then injected elements that could only have come from our side of the pond.
Powered by Crissie’s powerful but subtle and supple vocals and Ben’s perfectly complementary tones and acoustic guitar, The Shires have literally found a piece of country to call their own. They love American music, but they’re proudly British and intensely keen to add some real indigenous flavour to the pot with their debut album ‘Brave’.