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Artist Vitals
Total Clips32
Active Streams29
Missing Streams3
Commercially Available0
Artist RP Ranking42%
38 Concert Matches Worldwide
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Shovels & Rope on Wikipedia
Shovels & Rope
Shovels and Rope at Red Rocks Amphitheater July 13 2014.JPGShovels & Rope playing Red Rocks Amphitheater on July 13, 2014
Background information
OriginCharleston, South Carolina United States
GenresAmericana, folk, alternative country
Years active2008–present
LabelsDualtone Records, Dine Alone Records (Canada)
Associated actsThe Films
  • Michael Trent
  • Cary Ann Hearst

Shovels & Rope are an American folk duo from Charleston, South Carolina composed of husband and wife Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst. Combining threads from their individual solo careers, Shovels & Rope blends traditional folk, rock and roll and country rock.


  • 1 History
  • 2 Members
  • 3 Discography
    • 3.1 Albums
    • 3.2 Singles
    • 3.3 Music videos
  • 4 Awards and Nominations
  • 5 References
  • 6 External links


Cary Ann Hearst was born in Mississippi in 1979 and raised in Nashville from 1987 until she attended the College of Charleston in 1997. During school she began performing music as a solo artist in local bars and venues.[1] After graduating she toured, recorded and performed with various groups including Caravan and Borrowed Angels.[2] Hearst saw Michael Trent, born in Denver but relocated to Charleston, performing with his band The Films in 2002 and they began touring with various artists including Jump, Little Children.[3] Hearst released her first solo album Dust and Bones in 2006 and Trent released his self-titled solo album, also his first, in 2007.

In 2008 Hearst and Trent recorded and released the album Shovels & Rope as a co-bill under their individual names, not intended to ever create a permanent act.[4] Hearst and Trent married in March 2009 and continued to perform and record their music for their individual solo careers.[3] Hearst released the EP Are You Ready to Die in 2010 and the LP Lions and Lambs in 2011. Trent released The Winner in 2010.[5]

At the end of 2010 filming began on a documentary titled The Ballad of Shovels and Rope about their life as a band. Originally slated for only 3 months of filming, it didn't end until September 2013. After filming finished a Kickstarter campaign was launched to help get the film finished and released.[6]

In 2012, the pair committed to their joint venture and released an album together under the Shovels & Rope moniker entitled O' Be Joyful, which reached #123 on the Billboard 200.[7][8]

The band made their network television debut playing "Birmingham" on Late Show with David Letterman, January 30, 2013.[9] On September 18, 2013 at the Americana Music Honors & Awards Shovels & Rope received the honors of emerging artist of the year, as well as song of the year for their song "Birmingham".[10] They also appear in and end scene, and provide the episode background music, for the Charleston episode of CNN's Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain.[11]

The Ballad of Shovels and Rope premiered at the 2014 Cleveland International Film Festival.[12] The documentary went on to win Ground Zero Tennessee Spirit Award for best feature at the Nashville Film Festival[13] and Best Feature Documentary at the Port Townsend Film Festival[14]

As Shovels & Rope tour they typically perform a mix of songs from their solo careers and the combined ventures. Their third album, titled Swimmin' Time, was released on August 26, 2014 on Dualtone Records and debuted at #20 on the Billboard 200.[15][16] On November 20, 2015, Shovels & Rope released a cover album titled Busted Jukebox Vol. 1, featuring 10 cover songs with help from 9 other bands including The Milk Carton Kids, Shakey Graves, and Lucius.[17]

Shovels & Rope were featured on the song Great Night on the album H A R D L O V E with their fellow South Carolinan folk and rock band NEEDTOBREATHE in 2016.[18]

Some of the songs authored by Shovels & Rope chronicle historical events. "Thresher" from their 2014 album "Swimmin' Time" references the April 10, 1963 sinking of the USS Thresher (SSN-593). "Missionary Ridge" from their 2016 album "Little Seeds" references the November 25, 1863 Battle of Missionary Ridge in Chattanooga, Tennessee.


  • Cary Ann Hearst - lead and backing vocals, guitar, drums, keyboard, percussion
  • Michael Trent - lead and backing vocals, harmonica, guitar, drums, keyboard, percussion


  • "The Devil is All Around" (2014)[20]


  1. ^ 6/19/12 — Delta Mama and a Nickajack Man… the short version of a long story —
  2. ^ Retrieved 4/27/14 — Cary Ann Hearst credits —
  3. ^ a b 7/24/12 — Shovels & Rope's Michael Trent & Cary Ann Hearst Make Joyful Noise —
  4. ^ 12/6/12 — Interview with Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst of Shovels & Rope on "O' Be Joyful" —
  5. ^ Retrieved 4/27/14 — Shovels & Rope biography —
  6. ^ The Ballad of Shovels and Rope - Music Documentary Kickstarter. Retrieved on 2015-09-16.
  7. ^ 11/14/12 — Catching Up With Shovels & Rope —
  8. ^ a b Retrieved 4/27/14 — Shovels & Rope charts —
  9. ^ 1/31/13 — Shovels & Rope appear on Letterman Show —
  10. ^ 9/19/13 — Emmylou Harris, Shovels & Rope Win Big at Americana Awards —
  11. ^ 6/25/16 - Parts Unknown Episode 8, Season 6 -
  12. ^ The Ballad of Shovels and Rope Press The Ballad of Shovels and Rope. Retrieved on 2015-09-16.
  13. ^ 2014 GROUND ZERO TENNESSEE SPIRIT AWARDS & TENNESSEE HORIZON AWARDS Nashville Film Festival. Retrieved on 2015-09-16.
  14. ^ Port Townsend Film Festival: Day Three closes with awards IMDB. Retrieved on 2015-09-16.
  15. ^ 4/17/14 — Video Premiere: Shovels & Rope - Album Teaser —
  16. ^ a b "Shovels & Rope's "Devil Is All Around" Goes Top 20". 9/4/14.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  17. ^ "Shovels & Rope Explains Its New Covers Album, Track By Track". Retrieved 2016-01-09. 
  18. ^ 6/25/2016 - NEEDTOBREATHE release new song ‘GREAT NIGHT’ feat. Shovels & Rope - Vents Magazine
  19. ^ 5/5/14 — Acclaimed Duo Shovels & Rope To Release Highly Anticipated Sophomore Album "Swimmin' Time" August 26 via Dualtone Music —
  20. ^ "Future Releases on Triple A (AAA) Radio Stations". All Access Music Group. Archived from the original on 2014-06-27. 

External links

  • Official website
  • The Ballad of Shovels and Rope

Upcoming Live Shows

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Shovels & Rope has 38 upcoming shows:

Bijou Theatre (Knoxville, TN)Buy Tickets
The Vogue (Indianapolis, IN)Buy Tickets
First Avenue (Minneapolis, MN)Buy Tickets
Higher Ground (South Burlington, VT)Buy Tickets
Union Transfer (Philadelphia, PA)Buy Tickets
9:30 Club (Washington, DC)Buy Tickets
Jefferson Theater (Charlottesville, VA)Buy Tickets
Mountain Stage (Charleston, WV)Buy Tickets
The Fillmore (San Francisco, CA)Buy Tickets
The Fillmore (San Francisco, CA)Buy Tickets
Commodore Ballroom (Vancouver, Canada)Buy Tickets
The Depot (Salt Lake City, UT)Buy Tickets

Further Reading

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