Yes, fans can expect to hear hits such as “All I Want to Do” when the duo appears with Keith Urban Aug. 21 at Quicken Loans Arena. But Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush have covered everything from Beyonce’s “Irreplaceable” to the B-52s’ “Love Shack.”
“A lot of times, they’re just songs we like,” the 39-year-old Bush explains. “Other times, there are songs that we think will sound appropriate translated through a country or a roots filter.”
The genre-bending covers are a surprise for many concertgoers, perhaps because Nettles and Bush write so much of their own material — they penned 15 of the 17 songs on the deluxe fan edition of their latest release, Love on the Inside.
“It’s so much fun to watch people’s faces,” Bush says. He gives a recent rendition of the Kings of Leon’s “Sex On Fire” as an example. “Any female in that audience inside of 22 years old was looking at me like I was some sort of rock god. All [the live performance consists of] is me on a guitar and Jennifer on a piano, so we were both leaning into it emotionally.”
The married father of two is quick to point out that he and Nettles are not romantically involved. But they certainly have a connection.
“Jennifer and I just share a whole lot of common ground, whether it be morally or spiritually or creatively,” Bush says. “That’s satisfying.”