The Judds – Country’s Hitmaking Duo

The Judds – The Statler Brothers 

I saw The Judds back in the 80s, and they are the opening act for the Statler Brothers. At the time, I’m working at a music store while yes, it has its perks, the pay is horrible! Lucky for me, the store I’m working at is also a ticket outlet. So, this is where the perks came into play. I had front row tickets and I have to say, The Judds and The Statler Brothers did not disappoint! Been a fan since of both.

They were promoting the first album titled “Why Not Me” along with the single “Mama He’s Crazy”. Both songs were burning up the country charts at the time. The thing that stands out the most about The judds is how beautiful their vocals and harmonies complemented each other. We can also say that they soon become one of the most successful acts in country music history.    

Finding The Tipping Point

While there are plenty of female country artists making music in the 80s, like Tammy, Tanya, Dolly, Reba, Faith, Crystal, Barbara, K.T. and many more. One thing that we see during this time with female country artists is that they are starting to take more control of their careers. They’re changing things up, taking more risks.

As performers, these woman start making bold moves on how they want to see country going forward. Same with The Judds. But, while most of these other artists were well-established in Country music scene in the 80s, Wynonna & Naomi’s “success” is just starting after several years of struggle and sacrifice.

Taking a Chance That Pays off!

After a failed marriage and having two kids to take care of, Naomi enrolls in nursing school in Kentucky and moves the family to a mountain town nearby. While trying to keep things afloat and their sanity intact, the family uses music to pass the time.  Wynonna learns to play guitar, and her mother begins to harmonize along with the music. While they have trouble talking to each other, they realize that they can bond together through music and singing together. So, they pack their bags and move to Nashville. With the help of a patient that Naomi is caring for, they get a chance to audition with the head of RCA records and a few others. Two hours later they have a contract.  

New beginnings & Endings

Their first album, Wynonna & Naomi (1984), tops the charts. Seven years, eight CMA awards, five Grammy’s, and 20 million+ record sales later, Naomi retires for health reasons and the duo splits, ending with a 1991 farewell tour. The last show is televised, drawing the largest Pay-per-View audience of all time. In 1992 Wynonna launches her solo career with her solo album “Wynonna”

During the ‘90s and 2000s, she scores nearly a dozen Top 10 hits, including six No.1s. “Wynonna & the Big Noise” releases and reaches No. 14 on the Billboard U.S. country charts. Since Naomi’s recovery the duo have reunited for various projects and they have their own reality series on Oprah’s network that covers a reunion tour they did. Which takes fans behind the scenes. 

Wynonna Judd – “Recollections EP” Release

Like the rest of us stuck in quarantine during this pandemic, we all are finding ways to keep ourselves busy. The same goes with Wynonna Judd except that she’s doing what she normally does music projects. On October 30, 2020, she’s releasing ‘Recollections’ EP which is five covers of some of her favorite songs. Including tracks by John Prine, Nina Simone, Naomi Judd, Fats Domino, Grateful Dead and Slim Harpo. It’s the singer’s first project since Wynonna & the Big Noise in 2016. In 2021, The Judds will  also receive star on Hollywood Walk of Fame as well as doing a tour.

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