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Two Of Us

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On the road again

After several years pausing, Marylou et William Russeil are back on the road ...

Created in the early 90's, the duet which was first a trio (with Colin on drums) then a quartet (with Noé on washtub bass), played in every bar, on every beach and any place you can play music around here.

Then crisis came ...

Then Colin took off :

Radio Elvis, Gaëtan Roussel, Infos Music, Facebook

Then Noé did the same :

Colours in the street, Ricard Live music, Oniz

Then crisis came ... (again I know)

And winds turned.

So we're back with a lot of songs from the end of the 20th century going from folk to country and even rock'n roll : 2 voices, 1 guitar, a few percussions.

Although we do not write our songs, we really work on the choices we make. We generally avoid very famous songs and try to remain faithfull to what we like most and what we can do best. So you are not really going to listen to covers, but to something more personal, reflecting our personalities and style. All the songs are re-arranged by Two Of Us.

Specific to our style, all the songs are sung by the two of us, mostly in harmony. This is not usual in France.

The way to vocal harmonies

Photo de Two Of Us à Verruyes

TWO OF US, on the road again

Following in Gram Parsons, Emmylou Harris, Townes Van Zandt, Steve Young, Johnny Cash, Rodney Crowell, Neil Young ...

Did you say "Vocal harmony" ?

French popular music is mainly based on a single vocalist. You can seldom hear true harmony singing. But it seems that the young generation is using it more and more (listen to "Revolver" or "June et Lula").

At the time I was listening to Georges Brassens and other poet singers (or protest singers), american students introduced the songs of Simon & Garfunkel to my ears and I was instantly charmed. So they brought back to France many of their own record in which I could hear that sound that would change my life. That's how I decided to learn how to play the guitar.

Among those records, I discovered the songs of Crosby Stills & Nash, Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young, Poco or the Everly Brothers who are a major reference for many American and English bands of the 60s/70s (including the Beatles).

In the early 80s, I discovered country-rock music thanks to Emmylou Harris and Commander Cody (and his lost planet airmen ...).

In those years, I'm a radio program presenter and along with Jacques Mathé, we tried to introduce our audience to unknown (or little known) american artists.

In all my life, I've been listening to a lot of different styles, going from a rock era to a jazz-rock era to a gipsy-jazz era etc. but the songs of Emmylou Harris and others have never been far from me.

Photo de Two Of Us à Bordeaux

Vocal music in history ...

American music was born from several european musics, mainly irish and german, mixed with african influences. Harmony vocals have been a major feature in the american tradition from the XIXth century to the early recordings to the Andrew Sisters, the Everly Brothers, Simon and Garfunkel, Crosby, Stills and Nash, the Byrds, just to name the most famous.

Country and folk music, Gram Parsons, Emmylou Harris ...

Photo de Marylou

What do you know about it ?

Don't know why it is so hard to play country music in France. In fact, few people know anything else than dance floor country music.

Recently (2013), an english town set up a "journée française" (french day), recommending participants to wear a beret, bring a baguette (bread) and have a moustache (authentic). Country music in France is just the same : mainly caricatures et stereotypes.

A l'origine, la musique country est la musique des gardiens de bétail qui chantaient pour tromper leur solitude, le manque de femmes etc.

Mais cette musique a évolué, parallèlement au blues auquel elle a emprunté certains éléments et réciproquement.

Les vieux enregistrement (après la première guerre mondiale) nous montrent que

les deux courants sont très proches. Pour ceux qui veulent en savoir plus, consultez cette page.

Après une période d'immobilisme (années 50/début des années 60) la musique country va connaître un renouveau vers la fin des années 60 en ré-intégrant le rock (lui-même issu du blues et de la country) grâce à des artistes comme Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Ray Charles et de nombreux autres.

To me, the father of modern country music is Gram Parsons.

Although he passed very young (27 years old), Gram Parsons is quoted as a major influence by many well known artists among whom Keith Richards, Crosby Stills and Nash, The Eagles etc.

Gram Parsons joined the Byrds for their marster piece album "Sweetheart on the Rodeo" (that we may consider as a foundation for modern country music). He also played with "The Flying Burrito Brothers", influenced several songs of the Rolling Stones and originated the career of Emmylou Harris.

Photo de William

To get over with prejudices ...

In 1970, the Byrds were touring England and prepared to move to South Africa. Gram Parsons, meeting Keith Richards, asked him why people here seemed so strange when he said they were going there.

Keith told him about the apartheid regime, of which he had never heard before. Then Gram Parsons decided to quit as he did not want to play in such a place.

Two Of Us ... let's sing now !

We borrowed our repertoire from country/folk/rock american singers from the end on the 20th century :
Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons, Johnny Cash, Townes Van Zandt, Rodney Crowell, Steve Young

A few songs to listen to :

  • Wake Up Little Suzie
  • If I Were A Carpenter
  • Even Cowgirls Get The Blues
  • Four Strong Winds

As we've been singing and living together for several years now, our goal was to sing harmony vocals. So most of the songs (almost all) are sung by both singer, Marylou and William.

Wake Up Little Suzie et If I were A Carpenter were recorded live.

Instruments played in this recording :

  • Gibson J200
  • Martin HD-28
  • Martin 00 (Thanks to Philippe)
  • Fender Telecaster
  • Matchless Chieftain amp
  • Tambourine, Pandero, Woodblock, Shaker
  • Computers : Imac, Macbook Air
  • Software : Digital Performer
  • Audio unit : Motu 828
  • Preamps : Focusrite
  • Microphones : Shure SM81 (guitars), SE Electronics Z5600 (voices), Oktava MK012 (various)
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us au festival Ah!
Two Of Us au festival Ah!
Two Of Us à Diff'Art avec Radio Elvis et Colours In The Street
Two Of Us à Aiffres
Two Of Us à Diff'Art avec Radio Elvis et Colours In The Street
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us à Verrines
Two Of Us au Palais de la Biere à Poitiers

Contact Two Of Us

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Pros place

en tête Two Of Us

Pros only

Style : american folk / country music.

Repertoire : mostly american authors. Maybe some of our own songs.

Type : concert (not dancing).

Duration : concert about 90 mn, bars up to 2h00 split into 3 parts.

Instruments :

  • William : vocals, guitar, big drum, harmonica
  • Marylou : vocals, tambourines, woodblock, shacker

Technique : for small venues only (bars, concerts up to 150/200 people inside), we can bring our own sound system

Communication : small posters (A4), Facebook, newsletter, web site



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Informations given in this page are given "as is" and are subject to change without notice.