What happens when two accomplished solo artists and song writers meet, write, tour together, get married, and? The music world exhales with a sovereign, “yes.”
The Royal Oui consists of singer/songwriters Ari Shine, and . Shine is originally from , where he happened to meet the native, Pierce, while she was in town recording for her 2007 album Faultline. “A friend of mine was playing drums on the record and we just stayed in touch. It was interesting because she was from Vancouver, and I was on a Vancouver label at the time. Two years later we started writing songs, went on a short tour together,” details Shine.
“And then we got married,” interrupts Pierce.
“Once it started rolling it was like became a whole new life together,” adds Shine.
During five years of married life and countless collaboration efforts in each of their solo careers, Shine and Pierce shaped what would eventually become The Royal Oui. Pierce starts, “we started writing more and started realizing that certain songs weren’t for Ari or for me and they were this ‘thing’. I would say this started about…”
“…August of last year. We collaborated extensively on Adrienne’s last two records and even on my last record. These new ideas started to germinate and they were clearly a separate project than either of our own,” finishes Shine. The song writing experience took a shape of its own and the monster grew until the only option was to not only accept the inevitable, but begin to hone in on a new style entirely.
“We went on a joint north American tour and somehow when that tour ended, we just found that we were writing more and more of these ‘Royal Oui’ songs and it was clear to us that that was the next thing we were going to do,” notes Pierce. Shine explains that there was a strong reaction from their fans when the two would play together. As the tour progressed, the two began playing their full set lists together. That’s when the duo realized they were onto something and began a more focused approach to their song writing, and sonic fidelity.
“For me, I was in a new band and it didn’t matter that it was the same players that were in our last project. The players stayed the same but the whole mood changed,” iterates Shine.
Since coming “out in the open” about this new project The Royal Oui has released an EP entitled Forecast. A two song snapshot of what the award-winning songwriting duo has been up to. Forecast features the songs: When You Lose Your Mind and Actual Size. Evidently, circumstance was the selection method for the band’s first movement. “The cool ladies at [their label] File Under: Music kind of lost their minds over When You Loose Your Mind. They really love that song and they wanted it to be the single,” explains Pierce.
“[Actual Size] was one that, during the recording process, became an obsession. We kept going back to it, doing little things and it has all these different layers and stuff. For a moment we weren’t certain it was even going to make it on the record because all these new songs kept coming,” says Shine. He adds, “we had a meeting with the label at one point and it just was decided that Actual Size was going to be on the EP and I got so excited.”
The début EP was recorded at Shine and Pierce’s home studio in Vancouver, BC. Recorded, produced, mixed, and performed by the dynamic duo. The final mixes were then sent to Grammy and Latin Grammy award-winning mastering engineer Marco Ramirez. A prominent last step for both artists in their solo careers.
Released as a 7″ vinyl EP, also available for stream on SoundCloud, the Royal Oui’s first effort is a mystical, harmonizing, driving force of ear candy. It’s sweetness resonates with the fact that these two are an actual married couple. It’s this feeling of comfort-ability and communion that offers a charming truth to the sound they’ve managed to create.
The full length, which is completely finished by the way, is set for release February 11. 2014 should prove to be the big year for The Royal Oui, as they plan on hitting some festivals and a slew of tour dates. Just recently passing through Ontario, they’re currently touring through Western Canada before making their way south of the border.
“This is one of those full sensory full immersion live shows,” notes Shine. “We’ve got a set of projections. The songs are really kind of woven into the film stuff.”
Be sure to catch them on tour wherever you call home. “It’s the two of us on tour as a duo but we’ve really been working to fill up the sound with some magic,” says Pierce.