With an impressive 11 country hits, Little Big Town is enjoying success. Although it took the foursome over 10 years to get noticed, they scored two consecutive top 10 hits in the U.S. in 2008.
Little Big Town consists of Karen Fairchild, Kimberley Roads, Phillip Sweet and Jimi Westbrook. They have had success on the country charts with a sound that was once considered pop or rock. The group's four-voice harmonies and rotating lead vocals are part of their unique sound.
They acknowledge comparisons with some of their predecessors.
"Obviously we're influenced by all of those '70s harmony bands," Fairchild says, "and we had the chance to do a collaboration with Lindsey Buckingham (of Fleetwood Mac) on a show called Crossroads, so it can't help but just seep into your music, but I guess we would be the hillbilly version … "
"And with not as many marriages," Roads added.
Themes of family and community are common in the band's videos and music. All of the band members grew up in rural America. Phillip explains this common bond.
Sweet says, "We all have this heritage of southern roots and you know just..." "Small town," Fairchild chimes in. "...yeah," Sweet completes the thought, "and our belief in loving one another and loving our family."
Some question how the music industry will weather the current economic downturn. Karen is optimistic. "I think people want an escape, so music historically has always done well in depressed times and economies and recessions," she says, "so I think it's a way of therapy and healing for people."
The group has had their share of tough times. Kimberly's first husband died suddenly at a young age. Karen and Phillip both went through divorces.
When their first two record deals fell apart, the group was forced to take jobs outside of music for a while.
During the lean times, the band relied on each other for support. Karen and Jimi were married in 2006.
"They get along so much better now that they are married," Roads said.
Little Big Town is currently touring in support of their CD A Place To Land. Karen explains the CD title. "As a band we are very comfortable in our own skin (comfortable with who they are) now as writers and kind of found our place. That's just from an artistic side, but it was weird how in the midst of that time we named the record A Place to Land," she says, "and then had to shift the record from one label to the other and so..."
"... (we) found another place to land," Roads said.
In addition to the band's releases, Little Big Town recorded a song for the Disney film The Fox and the Hound 2. According to some fans it's their finest work.
"As far as our nieces and nephews are concerned," Roads says "It's the best thing we have ever done."
Westbrooke finshes her thought, "We're the greatest!"