They say when you know, you know. At least that was the case for Sugar & The Hi-Lows.
Both solo artists in their own right, Trent Dabbs and Amy Stroup had done hundreds of co-writes together through the years. Maybe on this particular co-writing session it was the vintage Gretsch amp that Trent had recently purchased or the conversation around classic, iconic music. Whatever it was, that day the two effortlessly penned their song, “This Can’t Be the Last Time,” and from there, Sugar & The Hi-Lows was born.
One song led to another and soon enough, Sugar & The Hi-Lows was releasing their self-titled debut album. The embrace of their rootsy, vintage collaboration was insatiable as the pair quickly gained national attention on the radio charts, hundred of TV placements between the two and a long list of applause from media like USA Today, Billboard Magazine, Paste Magazine, Marie Claire, American Songwriter, Buzzbands LA, Glide Magazine, and the list goes on.
Now two years in, the effervescent duo is continuing the magic on their sophomore release, High Roller. The lead single is an undeniable beacon track for the album, pulling in both Amy’s sassy style and Trent’s contagious shimmy and sway. It’s natural to draw the obvious imageries with a bold title like “High Roller,” but the underlining message of the song is muchmore than just a throwback dance track.
“The song is about owning all that you are, that you belong,” explains Amy. “It’s why we all find ourselves drawn to Trent’s dance moves on stage because it reminds us to go ahead and dance, be confident and strut our original self. And for us as Sugar & The Hi-Lows, that’s what it means to be a true high roller.”
While their sound obviously plays ode to music from different eras, Sugar & The Hi-Lows also fought to keep the rawness in the production as well. When it came to recording the album, the duo opted to go “old school,” bringing in their band to play the instruments live in the studio.
Sugar & The Hi-Lows is no stranger to drawing from their roots over the current trends and High Roller perfectly mixes a little bit of Amy’s Texas with a little bit of Trent’s Mississippi.
From the playful nod in “Bees Left The Trees” and “Can We Just Be Adults” to the longing ballad of “Right Time To Tell You,” each song is just as irresistible as its predecessor. The familiar nostalgia and charm found in their debut is featured prominently in this follow-up project, and their dynamic chemistry is undeniable more than ever.
“I think about that first writing session we had, right before we decided to do Sugar & The Hi-Lows,” Trent recalls. “It was one of the easiest, most comfortable co-writes you could ask for. As we continued to develop this project, the songs felt like they were writing themselves. It was natural and we knew we were on to something.”
The two’s inclination on their chemistry was correct. Since their inception, Sugar & The Hi-Lows has played sold-out shows around the world, co-headlined a national tour with Andrew Belle and was personally invited to join artists Ingrid Michaelson and Kacey Musgraves on tour. What may have begun simply as a routine co-write has become the sweetest gift of music. After all, when you know you’re on to something magical, you just know.
Amy adds, “Sugar & The Hi-Lows works because it’s Trent and I, especially live because we both play off each other’s performances. This collaboration brings a different aspect of our personalities to life that you don’t normally see in our solo stuff. It gives us permission to wear a different hat, to have fun and dance a little more and to be, well, high rollers.”
The result is their 11-track project which follows through with both the flitty, fun highs and equally poetic lows as only Sugar & The Hi-Lows does best.