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On January 14, Jennifer Nettles will release her first solo effort, That Girl, produced by the legendary Rick Rubin and recorded in Malibu, California at the famous Shangri-La Studios. If that sounds far from Nashville and Sugarland, it’s because it most certainly is. On That Girl, Nettles flexes the vocal muscles that she honed with Sugarland, but also stretches past the limits of country music’s imagination.
While country purists and Sugarland diehards may question whether this album has something for them, the answer is absolutely yes. Look no further than the torchy ballad and album opener, “Falling.” The track’s skillful lyrics and huge building bridge would not have felt remotely out of place on any previous Sugarland release.
Following it in a one-two torchy ballad punch is “Me Without You,” an ode to empowerment and a seemingly impossible life after leaving someone. The track paints her as a “caged bird” spreading her wings, but also touches on uncertainty and an unexpected new life. It’s hard not to wonder if the track pays homage to Nettles branching out on her own, singing “I don’t know this road I’m on or where it’s leading to, but I know I’m gonna be alright.”
Although the two opening tracks seem to feel oddly familiar, the rest of the album veers into somewhat unfamiliar territory for Nettles. Although her voice is one of the most distinct of our generation, her rangy twang and intonation unmistakable, some of the tracks are quite the departure for this country girl. There’s the bluesy “Moneyball,” with a throwback vibe and jazzy timbre and the mid-tempo “Jealousy,” a tongue-in-cheek look at a perfect girl one can’t help but envy. There’s the piano ballad “This One’s For You,” which breathes of co-writer Sara Bareilles’ influence. There’s also a rather impressive cover of Bob Seger’s “Like A Rock.”
Listeners of any type will be delighted by “Know You Wanna Know,” an up-tempo satirical ode to a culture obsessed with celebrity. “It’s on every dot com, so it must be true, the internet wouldn’t lie to you,” Nettles laments amusingly in this ear-wormy track that immediately begs for audience participation. In contrast to that raucous track, there’s also the stunningly beautiful “This Angel,” which reads as a love letter to Nettles’ son, Magnus. This is the “Stay” moment of the album where Nettles’ heart is on full display, except it’s no longer breaking with pain, but bursting with unspeakable love.
While That Girl may perplex some country purists, Nettles’ distinct twang and powerful voice is at its finest on this album and she’s never sounded better. With her uncanny ability to curve and bend a word for every drop of emotion, That Girl proves Nettles to be a phenomenal vocalist, true artist and incomparable storyteller.
Jennifer Nettles has been hard at work on her much-anticipated solo debut album, That Girl, which will be released on January 14, 2014. The album was produced by Rick Rubin and recorded at the famous Shangri-La Studios in Malibu, California.
“I started writing this album three years ago,” shares Nettles. “I put no conscious guides or governors on the creation of this album other than to write songs that I want to sing. Working with Rick Rubin was a dream come true and the result is an album that plays to my roots – country, 70’s radio, gospel and singer songwriter.”
Nettles penned the majority of the album, with 10 of the 11 tracks being written or co-written by the Sugarland superstar. Collaborators include Butch Walker, Phillip Sweet of Little Big Town, Rich Marx and Sara Bareilles. The album also features a cover of Bob Seger’s “Like A Rock.”
That Girl Track Listing:
Once again, some of country music’s biggest names are teaming up to bring us CMA Country Christmas, which tapes in front of a live audience Friday, November 8th, at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Jennifer Nettles will host this special, which airs this holiday season on ABC, for the fourth year.
“It’s really a joy for me to get to host CMA Country Christmas,” Nettles said. “I have so much fun doing it! I love the holiday season, and for me to get to be a part of this show for the fourth year in a row is a really big honor. What I love about doing this gig is that it’s the closest I’ve gotten to the old classic television variety shows. It is entertainment that everybody in the family can find fun, and I hope it’s something that keeps happening for years and years and years.”
Scheduled to join Jennifer and celebrate the season with songs and stories are: Trace Adkins, Luke Bryan, Sheryl Crow, Lucy Hale, Jake Owen, Kellie Pickler, Rascal Flatts, Darius Rucker, and Michael W. Smith.
“The taping for CMA Country Christmas is a jump-start for the holiday season and has become a family tradition for many Nashville residents,” said CMA Board President, Ed Hardy. “Adding to the celebration is our A Gift for All toy drive, which provides new toys for homeless children, shining a spotlight on a worthy endeavor in a way that reflects the values and heart of our artists, the industry, and this city.”
Audience members are being encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy to the taping to help underprivileged Nashville area children enjoy their holiday season. Generosity, a Nashville-based, non-profit group, will have volunteers at Bridgestone Arena to collect the toys for distribution to homeless families. Volunteers from Generosity will start accepting toys on November 8th at 1:00 PM at the Bridgestone Arena Plaza. ***A ticket for the show is not necessary to donate a toy to the cause.***
Tickets for CMA Country Christmas are on sale now and can be purchased at ticketmaster.com, by calling (800) 745-3000, or by visiting the Bridgestone Arena Box Office.
For updates and further information, visit CMAchristmas.com.
With her first solo single, “That Girl,” hitting iTunes today, Jennifer Nettles paid a visit to ABC’s Good Morning America to perform the track. The song tells the story of Dolly Parton’s famous character, Jolene, from Jolene’s perspective. It’s the first single off her forthcoming solo album, to be released later this year.
Watch her performance here:
Congratulations to Sugarland‘s lead singer Jennifer Nettles! She announced the arrival of her son Magnus Hamilton on her official website this morning. She made the announcement on her personal blog for her fans, and even sharing the first picture of her first baby for everyone to see (which you can check out below!).
She celebrated her first Mother’s Day yesterday with her 5-month old son and her husband, Justin Miller. Magnus Hamilton Miller was born back on December 6th, 2012, and the couple did not release the news or a picture until today.
In her blog, she wrote:
“On December 6, 2012 my life was forever changed. I had a baby! Magnus Hamilton Miller was born healthy, hungry and with way more hair than I was expecting after seeing baby pictures of both me and my husband. Needless to say, especially to those of you who have children, the rhythm of my life is way different than the movement and pace before baby. In short, this baby is the boss of me.”
Read the rest of her blog post HERE on her official site.
Congratulations Jennifer and Justin! We wish you all the best with your new family.
A Sugarland baby is on the way! According to People Magazine, Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles is pregnant! Gail Gellman, Sugarland’s Manager, told People Magazine that Jennifer and her husband, Justin Miller, “are thrilled beyond belief.” The Grammy award winning songstress is due in November. Congrats to Jennifer and Justin!
The first ladies of ABC’s upcoming singing show “Duets,” Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles and country music’s favorite adopted daughter, Kelly Clarkson, sat down with “Access Hollywood” to discuss their new reality TV endeavor and what will make them each a great judge. While Kelly feels that her own reality past prepared her for his mentorship role because she was once in the contestant’s shoes, Jennifer’s strength as a judge lies in her honest opinions and genuine excitement for the performances each week. She admits that she loves that she can “get in the trenches” and perform with the contestants, while Kelly loves the unexpected collaborations and themes that she describes like an awards show.
Well, we don’t know about you, but we’re sold and will be tuning in! Will you?
Looks like Blake Shelton is rubbing off on Kelly Clarkson. The same week that she made her adviser debut on NBC’s The Voice, ABC announced that Kelly Clarkson and Jennifer Nettles will be part of the cast for a brand new singing competition coming to ABC this Summer. “Duets” will star Kelly, Jennifer, Lionel Richie and Robin Thicke look for the newest talent in America to sing with them on the show. ABC is planning on taking the judges out of the chairs and on to the stage to do what they do best – sing and perform – with their two new proteges. It should be interesting to see how Kelly and Jennifer do.
Check out the first preview video sent to us from ABC and let us know what you think about the original American Idol and Sugarland‘s lead singer on this new competition. Will you tune in? Or are you still partial to The Voice, American Idol, or X-Factor? Let us know!
We love when celebrities help out good causes! Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles recently walked the red carpet and catwalk for the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show hosted by The Heart Truth, an organization created to help raise awareness for women’s heart disease.
In her stunning red dress, Jennifer and others strutted their stuff for NY Fashion Week raising both money and awareness for this worthy cause. Nettles posted a recap of the event on their blog to share with fans, which we have also posted below:
“Hello My Sweets,
We have been enjoying a small break from the road. We’ve been writing and enjoying our families, and now we’re starting to gear back up for our new tour that kicks off in April. As we’re beginning to poke our heads through the ice of our winter hibernation, I made a fun outing at New York’s Fashion Week. I was invited to walk the catwalk for the Heart Truth charity.
Heart Truth hopes to raise awareness for women’s heart disease. (Incidentally, heart disease is the leading cause of death among women in the US.) So, in honor of this very worthy cause, I decided step outside my usual comfort zone on the stage and walk the catwalk for New York’s Fashion Week. (I mean hey, if you’ve never walked a catwalk before, why not start in NY for Fashion week right?!). I’ve included some highlights so you can see some of the photos from this fun and worthy event.