Summer’s Rising Stars of Country

By Piper Whelan

Alberta’s Brad and Curtis Rempel are on the road to stardom as the up-and-coming country duo High Valley. After the release of their major label debut album and a whirl-wind rise in popularity, the Rempel brothers are appearing at two major country music festivals in Canada this summer. High Valley performed this past weekend at Country Thunder Saskatchewan in Craven, Saskatchewan. Later this summer, they’ll be in Calgary for Country Thunder Alberta (August 18-20).

Originally from La Crete, Alberta, the Rempels grew up listening to Ricky Skaggs albums on repeat, and dreamed of a career in country music from an early age. Now based in Nashville, the brothers are set to make those dreams come true, particularly if the upward chart movement of their recent singles is any indication. Being at the centre of the country music industry allowed the Rempel brothers to be exposed to a vast array of musical styles.

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“We’ve been coming to Nashville since 2001 now, but Brad moved here about seven years ago. I moved to Nashville four years ago,” says Curtis Rempel. “Being down here has definitely broadened our horizons.” These horizons go beyond the country genre, and he cites bands like The Chainsmokers and Imagine Dragons as a few of the artists that have inspired them recently. “The music that we’ve been able to get to know in the last 10 years has definitely affected the way that our music sounds.”

The particular style of country they first fell in love with, though, is never far away. “Our sound is a combination of the bluegrass that we grew up listening to … and the cool hit music that we’re hearing on the radio today, so we kind of combine those two worlds,” Rempel explains. “It’s kind of like we’re trying to bring an old-fashioned barn dance into 2017.”

For more information about the upcoming Country Thunder festivals, check out: www.countrythunder.com

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