April 17, 2009 — Sugarland is the reigning Vocal Duo of the Year for the both the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music, though it's a lineup that has people scratching their heads on occasion.
Jennifer Nettles is the lead singer and generally the spokesperson for the two, and Kristian Bush takes a bit of a backseat in terms of public profile. Why, she's been asked, does she need him?
"We've heard that question before, and it's obviously hurtful to Kristian," she told The Minneapolis Star Tribune. "From a musical perspective and from an emotional perspective, it's a wonderful partnership for me. It's kind of like the Eurythmics."
Annie Lennox was the lead vocalist for that duo during the 1980s, though Dave Stewart had a huge hand in the songwriting and in the production. That's certainly the case for Kristian, who's been a20co-writer on all but two of their hits thus far and is a co-producer on the current album, Love On The Inside. Plus, Kristian adds an extra enthusiasm on stage, much as Kix Brooks does for Brooks & Dunn.
"He is my favorite person to write with," Jennifer said of Kristian. "We never know what the future will hold. ... If there's something that he itches to do or I itch to do, we'll be supportive of each other."
And while the Eurythmics provided a stepping stone for Annie Lennox' solo career, Jennifer has "no plans for that as of right now."
The more immediate plans for the Atlanta-based act are to be out of town: Sugarland is booked heavily on the road this summer, with a series of headlining gigs plus opening slots for Keith Urban and for Kenny Chesney's stadium dates on the Sun City Carnival Tour.