NASHVILLE (Billboard) - What do you get when you combine one of rock's most distinctive voices with one of acoustic music's most celebrated talents? The answer is Fiction Family, a collaboration forged by Switchfoot lead vocalist Jon Foreman and Nickel Creek guitarist Sean Watkins.
ATO/Credential Recordings will release their self-titled debut disc January 20.
"We're a bit of an odd couple, and that's what makes it work," Foreman says. "Even though we have different backgrounds, the music we grew up listening to and still admire today is very similar."
The unlikely musical pairing began when Nickel Creek and Switchfoot were playing a festival in San Diego. "Jon and I met backstage," Watkins says. "We talked about writing a song together and traded numbers, but we didn't do it until we saw each other in a coffee shop much later." Plans to make a demo were quickly expanded into an EP, and eventually a full album.
Foreman describes the sound as having "a lot of Jayhawks mixed into it. There's definitely a little Beatles influence. Both Sean and I are a sucker for a good melody, and Sean's an amazing guitar man, so I think that really factored in heavily."
The duo, who begin a North American tour January 13 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, hope fans of Nickel Creek and Switchfoot will find reason to embrace Fiction Family.
"Hopefully it's not predictable," Watkins says, "but I think it will make sense when people hear it. I also think that there is stuff that both of us haven't done before on record, which I think will excite fans of either of our groups."