Langley, BC country duo Robyn and Ryleigh aren't shy when it comes to talking about the music they play; “Country means wearing cowboy boots, listening to country music, having the attitude to do what we want, and don’t care what others think”. The 2012 BC Country Music Award nominated duo are set to release their first full music album “Robyn & Ryleigh” on July 17th on local music label Rain Coast Music led by industry veterans Paul Shatto and David Wills.
The release of their first full-length album, "Robyn and Ryleigh," marks an exciting step forward for the sisters. Writing many of their songs based on her own experiences of love and heart break, Robyn hopes that listeners can relate. The ten track album is mostly upbeat, with the sadness and melancholy of “Bad Boys” quickly forgotten in the punchy "Perfect Date", breezy "Summer Girl", and the heartfelt "Our Own Way of Loving." A polished display of their sibling harmonies and country flavour, the album also includes song writing contributions from Taylor Swift, Steven Lee Olsen, and Kathleen Higgins.
In 2010, Robyn & Ryleigh were discovered by veteran country music producers/managers David Wills and Paul Shatto, who were impressed by their blossoming stage presence and energy. Known for their success in launching the careers of acts like The Higgins, AJ Woodworth, and The Matinée, Wills and Shatto turned their attention to Robyn & Ryleigh and fine-tuned their sound in a studio setting. This collaboration led to Robyn & Ryleigh's debut EP, Love Always, and live showcases including the 2010 BC Summer Games, the 2011 BC Country Music Awards, the 2011 Merritt Mountain Music Fest, and the 2012 Canadian Country Music Awards.
Following the 2012 BC Country Music Award nominations for "The Horizon Award" and "Group/Duo of the Year", Robyn & Ryleigh became a centerpiece of Raincoast Music, the new Canadian artist management and music production label founded by Wills and Shatto. This affiliation led them to join the MDM Recordings family with artists like Chad Brownlee, Hayley, and Jess Moskaluke. Country through and through, the girls both still feel that the city is judgemental and are more at home in Langley, where the community has been very supportive of their music career.
The dedication to their craft that got them noticed is perhaps best told by Ryleigh. At a live performance at the Party in the Park in Chilliwack, it started to rain so hard that the microphone electrocuted her lips. They were forced to take a break. After the storm passed, they went back on. The audience didn't leave regardless of the rain, and so the duo sang even harder and put on a great show in spite of the rain and the electrocution.
Of the two, Robyn has a bit more raspy sound, whereas Ryleigh has a cleaner sound. Add to that their sisterly banter between sets and their dedication to giving it their all every night on stage, and its no wonder they're making waves. Check it out yourself with their first music video "Just Another Sundown".
With their album set to be released and recent high profile concerts, the girls are looking to the future. The duo hope to one day sing alongside their idol Taylor Swift, and play Rogers Arena. When asked which Nashville singer/songwriters would top their list for future collaborations, the girls named Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood. Ryleigh also named Keith Urban, not only for his talent as a vocalist, but because she likes to stare at him.
The girls welcome the fame, but want to be good role models and will be keeping it PG. When asked about their own image and the norm of female singers being promoted as “sexy," they praised all the success other female artists have garnered in their career but stated that they would do what was right for them.
In conjunction with the July 17th, 2013 album release, Robyn & Ryleigh will be playing at a variety of venues around the Pacific Northwest this summer. It will be followed by a fall trip to Nashville to write songs in the heart of Music City. "It will be our first trip to Nashville, but not our last," promises Robyn.
Robyn and Ryleigh Gillespe
Having listened to the album, we think it’s the perfect album for summer around the BBQ, having drinks with friends, or when you want to chill by yourself. It’s light and heart warming. We especially like “Just Another Sundown” and “Summer Girl” where their attitude really comes through. Robyn and Ryleigh are young and pretty, and are both grounded in the pursuit of delivering good music to inspire others with a positive message.
Part mud, makeup, glamour and fun, Robyn & Ryleigh are authentic Canadian country girls who immerse themselves into the country lifestyle in unique ways. Robyn can be found working on her own car, while Ryleigh enjoys quadding. As they sing about fast cars, boys, and hot summer nights, Robyn & Ryleigh are the perfect recipe for a couple of girls you’d like to get to know better.