Monday Morning Tunes: The Civil Wars

The Civil Wars
thequeenshall / Flickr

It shouldn’t have taken me until now to write about The Civil Wars, or at least mention them. Since it has taken me until now to dedicate a Monday Morning Tunes post to them, I have to tell you that this incredible, four-time Grammy Award-winning duo has officially parted ways.

Having been on an “indefinite hiatus” since late 2012, Joy Williams and John Paul White released a statement in early August announcing that their musical partnership had come to an end. The only work the Civil Wars have put out during the time of their hiatus has been the “Bare Bones EP” that featured alternate versions of the songs “Oh Henry” and “Eavesdrop” and acoustic versions of four other, previously-released songs.

As a thank you and farewell to their fans, the Civil Wars offered up their rendition of the song “You Are My Sunshine,” recorded in 2010 and only previously available as a B-side to the band’s limited edition 2011 “Barton Hollow” 7″ vinyl. This is the first time the song has been available digitally in the US.

So why was I compelled to write about the Civil Wars now? Well, it seems as if their song “Poison & Wine” has suddenly appeared everywhere, regardless of the fact that it was released three years ago on the “Barton Hollow” album.

I have a few go-to music resources I utilize throughout a typical workweek and no matter which I put on, this song always eventually shows up. I’ve loved it from the first time I heard it and I know you will too.

“Poison & Wine” was also used in its 3-minute and 39-second entirety during a montage at the end of a season 6 episode of “Grey’s Anatomy.” Fun fact.

It’s difficult to pinpoint what is truly the best of the Civil Wars. They have received critical acclaim for nearly everything they have released.

In 2012, the Civil Wars won their first and second Grammy Awards, for their album “Barton Hollow” and for Best Country Duo/Group Performance, respectively. The next year they took home their third Grammy in the category of Best Song Written For Visual Media for their collaboration with Taylor Swift on the song “Safe & Sound” for “The Hunger Games: Songs From District 12 And Beyond” soundtrack.

Their 2013 self-titled album helped them scoop up their fourth Grammy in 2014, again for Best Country Duo/Group Performance.

It’s unfortunate that the Civil Wars have decided to part ways, especially considering their repeated, widespread success. Then again, that much success has been known to poison relationships. We’ll probably never know why the Civil Wars decided to call it quits, but we do know that Joy Williams will not be leaving the music industry behind.

In their final farewell statement, she said:

Looking ahead, I’m excited to share the music that I am writing and recording in the midst of this difficult transition. I’ve loved being back in the studio, and have missed performing live. I look forward to seeing you soon.”

At least we have that to look forward to.

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Monday Morning Tunes: Sia

laubarnes / Flickr

I have been on a total Sia kick lately. Cannot get enough of her.

This is actually the second time I have written about Sia here on Woman Tribune. The first time was back in 2010, when she spoke out about developing a panic disorder after being outed as bisexual by celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton. Losing her privacy at the height of her fame and suddenly inundated by the peering eyes of the public, she suffered panic attacks and ultimately decided to step out of the limelight.

After the 2010 release of her fourth album, “We Are Born,” Sia stopped putting out music under her own name. On top of living with a panic disorder, she became addicted to drugs and alcohol and had survived a suicide attempt before entering rehab.

When Sia returned to the music industry, she returned as merely a songwriter. Her writing chops are responsible for chart-topping hits like Rihanna’s “Diamonds,” “Perfume” by Britney Spears, “Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself)” performed by Ne-Yo, Beyonce’s “Pretty Hurts,” she wrote “Cannonball” for Lea Michele after the untimely death of Cory Monteith, and she even co-wrote the World Cup anthem “We Are One.”

Of course you may have heard Sia before. Her song “Breathe Me” is what propelled her popularity with American audiences after it was featured during the monumental closing sequence of HBO’s award-winning show “Six Feet Under,” only one of the most incredible shows to have ever aired on television.

Last month, Sia released her first album in four years, “1000 Forms Of Fear.” It is spectacular. Sia’s personal music comeback has been amazing, and if you’ve turned on the radio at all recently, it’s likely you’ve been hearing a lot of “Chandelier.”

When I looked up the song “Chandelier” on YouTube, I saw that Sara Bareilles covered it during a live show in Charlottesville, Virginia. It’s pretty great, as Sara Bareilles usually is. It also made an appearance on “The Voice,” performed by kick ass rocker Kat Perkins.

But while it may be the song getting the most attention right now, “Chandelier” is only the tip of the greatness on “1000 Forms Of Fear.” I recently went an entire day listening to nothing but “Elastic Heart” on repeat. I’m not even kidding. Then the next day I woke up and put it on again. I think I’m doing that thing where you listen to a song obsessively until you get so sick of it you never want to hear it again, except I’m not getting sick of hearing it.

An alternate version of “Elastic Heart” was recorded with The Weeknd and Diplo for “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” soundtrack.

I’m ecstatic that Sia has decided to release a new album. It’s obvious that she has heaps of talent, but even more important than that, it seems that she has found her footing in the public world once again. This time I hope she fits more comfortably in the nook she has successfully carved out for herself.

6 Spotify Playlists to Wake Up To

Spotify headphones

The best thing about Spotify, besides being able to listen to virtually any music that has ever been released to the public and for free no less, is the ability to create and follow playlists. This feature has opened Spotify up to become the newest version of the mix tape, and there isn’t a person out there who doesn’t love a good mix tape.

Here are 6 playlists currently on Spotify perfectly tailored to start your day (and especially your Monday) off right.

Songs to Sing in the Shower

Amp up your morning by singing along to these classic hit tracks while you shower.


The alarm clock has never sounded so good. Enjoy your morning with these uplifting, cheery indie rock songs.

Rock & Roll Wake Up

Get up and get moving with these energizing rock tracks.

Caffeine Rush

A dose of coffee with the mash-up of perfect tracks that will get you buzzin’ faster than ever before.

Mood Booster

Get happy with this pick-me-up playlist full of feel good songs!

Get Happy

Songs for cheering up!

Honorable Mentions

Want to listen to every song featured in our Monday Morning Tunes series? You can now subscribe to the Woman Tribune Monday Morning Tunes Spotify playlist!

If you’re looking for some of the best classic and current love songs out there, check out the Love Me Then Love Me More playlist.

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