Shovels & Rope: Tiny Desk Concert The husband-and-wife duo mixes rowdy folk-rock and rootsy ballads, with the help of a canine friend. Watch Shovels & Rope perform a pair of songs from 2012's O' Be Joyful, as well as the older "Bad Luck," live in the NPR Music offices.

Tiny Desk

Shovels & Rope

Shovels & Rope: Tiny Desk Concert

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Shovels & Rope's presence in the NPR Music offices attracted plenty of interest; many in attendance had long since fallen in love with the husband-and-wife duo's mix of rowdy folk-rock and rootsy balladeering. But once Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent showed up, the office quickly lost sight of the approaching performance, as the murmurs began: "There's a dog in the office there's a dog in the office there's a dog in the office!" You could practically see our coworkers' brains short out from a combination of cognitive dissonance and canine adoration.

But, as endearing as our new friend was, Shovels & Rope soon won back the crowd's attention. After opening with the plaintive ballad "Carnival," the South Carolina duo ripped through one of its signature rockers — "Birmingham," during which the pair held eye contact sweetly while singing in unison — before closing with "Bad Luck," a clattering gem for which the two swap instruments (he on guitar, she on drums). The song, originally from a Michael Trent solo album, most recently appeared on a deluxe version of Shovels & Rope's 2012 debut, the winning and appropriately titled O' Be Joyful.

Set List

  • "Carnival"
  • "Birmingham"
  • "Bad Luck"

Credits

Producers: Bob Boilen, Denise DeBelius; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Parker Miles Blohm, Chloe Coleman, Denise DeBelius; photo by Chloe Coleman/NPR

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