The Secret Sisters: Old Time Soul
The Secret Sisters bring a throwback sound and sensibility to Nashville
Listen to "Tennessee Me"
At the urging of a friend, Laura Rogers went to an open-call audition for singers in Nashville late last year. The fresh-faced, then-twenty-three-year-old had just graduated from Middle Tennessee State University and was working as a nanny. She sang a few bars for the panel, then left, thinking it just a mediocre effort. But when she got back to her apartment, she received a call asking her to come back.
She did, sang some more, and, sensing an opportunity, told the panel about her sister, Lydia—two years her junior and also a singer—who was studying to be a graphic designer in their hometown of Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Lydia left in the middle of class, arrived at the audition, and the pair sang two songs: “Tonight You Belong to Me,” a 1920s song popularized in the Steve Martin movie The Jerk, and a Rufus Wainwright track, “Do You Love an Apple?” Before they were finished, jaws were on the floor, and by January, the Secret Sisters, as they’re now known, had a record deal.
It’s a story that dreams are made of, and proof that for every slick pop-country star like Taylor Swift, Nashville can still make room for authentic old-school performers. With their Bettie Page hair and lipstick and vintage dresses, the Sisters look—and sing—as if they’re straight out of the 1940s. Their glorious harmonies fill the duo’s self-titled debut, executive-produced by multiple Grammy winner T Bone Burnett.