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Autumn Hill at winter concert

She was working as a graphic designer for some of the world’s biggest stars when she realized she would rather be doing the work they were doing than the work she was doing for them. He was already a successful solo artist, but hadn’t quite nailed down that perfect song.

Their worlds couldn’t have been more different, but when the two came together to form country duo Autumn Hill, sparks flew – and Mike Robins knows why.

“We each bring a lifetime of experiences to the table. When we sit down and write . . . you always sort of get this duality to the songs. It’s this other dimension that breathes more life into [the music].”

Autumn Hill’s other half couldn’t agree more.

“I was living on the other side of the country, in Calgary, when I moved to Toronto to sign with the same label [Wax Records] that Mike was signed with independently. They put us together for a writing session and in that writing session we wrote ‘Favourite Mistakes,’ and that ended up being the title track of our debut album,” said Tareya Green.

“It was the first song we wrote together and it was just one of the best songs we’d written . . . so we decided to write more and before you knew it, we had written an entire album of duets.”

“When we [got together], it was just like ‘whoa.’ It was one of the best pieces of music either of us had ever written,” said Robins, adding with a laugh and a certain degree of cheese, “the rest is history.”

He’s right. One smash debut album later, the duo is busy sharing their talents with country music lovers from all over – including those in Fredericton.

Presented by the UNBSU, Autumn Hill will land at the Cellar Pub on Feb. 1, and both Robins and Green hope to see as many Frederictonians as possible share in the groove – and maybe even get a chance to participate in the duo’s new music video for the song “If She Wants This Town.”

“The idea is we’re having a ton of people submit videos of them holding signs with their favourite lyrics [from the song]. If people want to bring signs [to the show], we can get some good footage,” said Robins, adding that they have already received entries everywhere from Hawaii to Switzerland.

“The most rewarding thing is when you connect with people, so the idea for this is to bring the country community together.”

The sense of community is certainly Green’s favourite part of the whole experience.

“Just looking out and seeing people responding to your songs in such a personal way is one of the most rewarding parts of being an artist. It makes you feel connected, more human, like what you’re doing is a lot more important,” she said.

Robins hopes to see many local faces at Saturday’s show, which he predicts will be “an emotional roller-coaster disguised as one heck of a good party.”

Tickets can be purchased in advance at the UNBSU Welcome Center for $5, or at the door for $10.

“In addition to it being a party, there’s a lot of stuff people can connect with,” added Green.

“We hope they come out of the show feeling inspired or refreshed.”

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