Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis

Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis
Photograph by Todd Wolfson

Austin’s favorite musical couple have separate careers: He’s just released The New World , and after recording Translated From Love , in 2007, she’s now taking a hiatus to focus on their four children. Yet they join forces every year to play a series of holiday shows in cities across the state. They kick off this year in Austin, on December 11.

Is it challenging for songwriters like yourselves to sink your teeth into such well-traveled material?

KW: It isn’t stuff that’s real fresh, that people haven’t heard a hundred times going to the grocery store, so it’s challenging to find interesting material. But I love singing in that style. We don’t really get to do that a whole lot.

BR: Especially not in country music. It’s a fine line, right? The songs are traditional, and it’s wonderful to hear them every year, but you can easily become sick of them.

Did you both grow up around a lot of holiday music?

BR: Yep, I heard all those songs on the radio.

KW: My mother would do a lot of singing in that style, so I have a fondness for that stuff. There’s such a nostalgic feeling to those songs. It just feels good to hear ’em and sing ’em. ( Read the full interview .)

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