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The Handsome Family

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Chicago, United States (1993 – present)

The Handsome Family is an alternative country and americana band, formed in Chicago, Illinois, and currently based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The band was formed in 1993 by husband-and-wife duo Brett Sparks (vocals, guitar, keyboards) and Rennie Sparks (bass, banjo, vocals), along with drummer Mike Werner. The band would later revolve around Rennie, who writes the lyrics, and Brett, who writes the music. Guest musicians complete the band line-up for recordings and live work.

Their seventh CD, Last Days Of Wonder (June. 2006) was one of Mojo’s top ten American Albums for 2006 and called “an unqualified triumph” by Uncut. Of their sixth CD, Singing Bones, The UK’s Independent wrote, “Rarely, even in the fatalistic world of country music, has the precarious mystery of mortality been captured with such poetic grace as on Singing Bones.”

They have appeared in the movie, I’m Your Man (2005), a tribute to Leonard Cohen as well as Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus (2004). In 2004, a reader’s poll in Mojo named The Handsome Family’s third CD, Through the Trees one of the ten essential Americana records.

Last Days of Wonder is a collection of love songs sung in airports, garbage dumps, drive-thru windows and shark-infested waters. The CD celebrates the little miraculous moments of beauty found in everyday life: a golf course shining in the rain, hanging lights bouncing in the breeze, pigeons singing from billboards, trees blooming in squares of dirt.

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