Joey And Rory Biography
Before the duo's foundation, Rory Lee Feek worked as a songwriter in Nashville, Tennessee, and he has continued to work as a songwriter even as a member of Joey + Rory. Songs that he wrote for other artists include Clay Walker's Top Five hit "The Chain of Love", Blake Shelton's Number One hit "Some Beach", and Jimmy Wayne's 2008 single "I Will". Rory also founded the independent label Giantslayer Records in 2004, on which Joey had recorded a solo album entitled Strong Enough to Cry in 2005. This album was released in CD format in 2008, as well as a digital download. Rory also recorded a solo album on Giantslayer Records, titled My Ol' Man, which he also made available only as a download.
Joey + Rory performed on the CMT competition Can You Duet in 2008, in which they were the third-place finalists. Shortly after the competition, they were signed to the independent label Sugar Hill Records. They returned to the Can You Duet stage to perform "Cheater, Cheater" on "Original Song Night" for the series' second season, which aired on July 25, 2009.
The duo's debut album, The Life of a Song, was released on October 28, 2008 on Sugar Hill Records. The album debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, and No. 61 on the all-genre Billboard 200. Its lead-off single, "Cheater, Cheater", was originally recorded by the duo Bomshel. Kristy Osmonson, one-half of that duo, co-wrote the song with the Feeks and Wynn Varble. Bomshel's version was released as a single in early 2008, although it did not chart. Joey + Rory's version was released in September 2008, featuring a music video that has a cameo from Naomi Judd, who had been a judge on Can You Duet. Joey + Rory's version peaked at No. 30 on the country music charts in early 2009. The duo has also appeared in television commercials for the online retailer Overstock.com. In February 2009, the duo were nominated for the Academy of Country Music Awards Top Vocal Duo. Although a cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Free Bird" was originally to have been released as the second single, it was withdrawn after two weeks, and replaced in March 2009 with "Play the Song", which failed to chart. The album's third single, "To Say Goodbye", was released to radio on July 27, 2009, and also failed to chart.
Joey + Rory released their first holiday single, the Carl Jackson produced "It's Christmas Time," on November 16, 2009 to country radio and November 24, 2009 to digital retailers. It was done in partnership with CMT One Country, who will donate a portion of proceeds from the single to various charities (including The Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee). Additionally, Rory Feek along with Tim Johnson, created the Song Trust; under this an album of holiday songs performed by children, titled Merry Kidsmas, was released.
Joey + Rory announced on October 15, 2009, that they were in the studio working on the follow-up album to The Life of a Song. The album, titled Album Number Two, was announced in January 2010 and released on September 14, 2010. The lead-off single, "This Song's for You", was released to radio in July 2010; originally "That's Important to Me" had been chosen, but the single choice was changed. The music video for "This Song's for You" was directed by Darren Doane and was released in August 2010. "That's Important to Me" was released as the album's second single in October 2010. It debuted at number 58 on the Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending February 12, 2011.
On March 16, 2010, it was announced that the duo were the winners of the 2010 Academy of Country Music Award for Top New Vocal Duo, and would compete alongside Luke Bryan and Gloriana for the Top New Artist award. Joey + Rory performed new songs from their upcoming album, were interviewed, and received their award on the GAC special "ACM Top New Artists" on April 1, 2010.
On August 29, 2011, Joey + Rory released a new single, titled "Headache," to country radio, though it failed to chart and was not included on an album. Joey + Rory released their first Christmas album, A Farmhouse Christmas, on October 11, 2011.
Joey + Rory's third studio album, His and Hers, was released on July 31, 2012. "When I'm Gone" and "Josephine" served as the album's first two singles and were simultaneously released to radio before the album,though neither charted.
Joey + Rory announced on the red carpet of the ACM Awards that the duo had recorded their first album of gospel music. Joey Martin told Billboard that "It's kind of an inspirational album, of old gospel songs that I grew up singing and listening to my mum sing. It’s an album I’ve wanted to do for a long time." The album, Inspired: Songs of Faith & Family, was released on July 16, 2013 via Gaither Music Group. It debuted at number 166 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 3,000, while also peaking at number 31 on the Top Country Albums chart and at number 6 on the Top Christian Albums chart.
After the release of their Gospel album, Joey + Rory announced that they would be releasing their fifth studio album, Made to Last, in late 2013 via their own Farmhouse Recordings record label (their first self-released project). Made to Last was released on October 8, 2013 and debuted at No. 44 on the Top Country Albums chart. Their sixth studio album, Country Classics: A Tapestry of Our Musical Heritage, was released exclusively to Cracker Barrel in May 2014, with a wide release following on October 14, 2014. Their second project on Gaither Music Group, the record consists of cover versions of classic country songs. In October 2015, after Joey's terminal cancer diagnosis, the duo cancelled all future concert appearances.