Personnel: Buddy Miller (guitar, bouzouki, harmonium, melodica, bass); Julie Miller, Emmylou Harris (vocals); Tammy Rogers (mandolin); Larry Campbell (fiddle); Phil Madeira (Hammond B-3 organ); Joey Spampinato, Byron House, Rick Plant, Garry Tallent (bass); Donald Lindley, Bryan Owings, Brady Blade (drums).
BUDDY & JULIE MILLER was nominated for the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album.
Personnel: Julie Miller (guitar); Emmylou Harris (vocals); Tammy Rogers (mandolin); Larry Campbell (fiddle); Rev. Brady Blade, Bryan Owings (drums).
Photographer: Jim Herrington.
Buddy Miller spent the '90s becoming an Americana icon; a true renaissance man, he's a skilled producer, engineer, songwriter, and guitar player, and his skills in all those areas have enhanced the careers of Emmylou Harris and many others. Often working with wife Julie, he's also turned out some minor gems of modern country. Buddy and Julie have both recorded separately and have helped out on each other's projects considerably, but this is the first time they've released an album jointly. Accordingly, BUDDY & JULIE MILLER is a winning mixture of Buddy's country roots and Julie's more adventurous pop-rock ambitions.
The album opens with Richard Thompson's "Keep Your Distance" as the couple does a fine job of filling the classic Richard and Linda roles (even though it's one of Thompson's post-Linda tunes). "You Make My Heart Beat Too Fast" is a pounding, lusty rocker that makes excellent use of Julie's quirky, Victoria Williams-like tone. Buddy's rootsier inclinations soon peek up again though, on the acoustic ballad "Forever Has Come to an End" and the back-porch honky-tonk of "Little Darlin'." The churning, atmospheric "Dirty Water" showcases some of the sonic tricks Buddy probably picked up in Emmylou's Spyboy band, but in short order things get down-home again with a gutsy take on Bob Dylan's courtly waltz "Wallflower." Throughout this disc, the Millers manage to build impressively on their roots without ever abandoning them.
Entertainment Weekly (9/21/01, p.85) - "...A portrait of marriage as a constant surprise and challenge..." - Rating: A-
Q (12/01, pp.140-1) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...The songs are strong, the production spotless and the performances winningly true..."
CMJ (10/1/01, p.30) - "...Buddy's raw, honky-rock guitar style...and Julie's wickedly willowly voice place the duo high on the list of contemporary roots rockers..."
No Depression (11-12/01, p.116) - "...It's the sort of tradition-based music that would jolt a traditional purist, yet might still sound old-timey to those who can;t hear past the reedy vical strains..."
Mojo (Publisher) (3/02, p.102) - "...They trade vocals and harmonies on horny hillbilly, spare folk-Americana, quasi ZZ Top rockers and weepy-steel country..."