Little Big Town has been one of the hottest names in country music for years now, but fans are still behind on the dynamics of its four group members. Some may not even be aware that two of them are married.
That’s right. Karen Fairchild, 48, and Jimi Westbrook, 46, have been happily married since 2006.
Here’s what you need to know about them:
1. Fairchild Divorced Her First Husband Shortly After the Release of Their Debut Album
Little Big Town formed in 2002.
Both Phillip Sweet and Karen Fairchild got divorced in the early years of the band’s career, not long after releasing their debut album. In 2005, Kimberly Schlapman’s husband, Steven Roads, passed away suddenly. Roads was also the group’s lawyer.
In an US Weekly interview, Karen was asked how she and Jimi got together after divorcing from her first husband. She responded, “I think Jimi and I had a special friendship and connection that blossomed when we were both single. Sometimes you just have to cross that line and take a chance and when we had that opportunity we did. Of course we didn’t want to mess up the band but we decided it was worth the risk.”
2. Karen & Jimi Married in 2006 in Nashville
Karen and Jimi married on May 31, 2006, in a small ceremony in Nashville. Their marriage was kept quiet for a number of months before it was revealed to the public.
In an interview with US Weekly in 2010, Karen was asked how being on the road as husband and wife is. She responded, “It’s challenging. We are together 24 hours a day, so that is a very good thing and a very bad thing. If you need a break, there is nowhere to go, but the great thing about it is we get to enjoy this
incredible journey with the band together.”
She continued, “The band is like one big marriage. You have to really be family and love each other to be in a band this long or you would have gone your separate ways. Kimberly and Philip both have their spouses out here with us a lot. They travel with us as much as they can. We keep the families on the road. Everyone has a child as well, so family is super important to the band.”
3. They Have One Son Together
Karen and Jimi welcomed their son, Elijah Dylan Westbrook, into the world on March 5, 2010.
Karen posts many pictures of her hubby and son on her Instagram page, which you can check out here.
In December 2016, they added another member to their family: a dog named Honey.
Asked what it’s like to have their kid on the road with them, Karen said, “It’s awesome. To keep the little ones occupied and not bored is the biggest challenge we’ll have all week. So many people who tour have to say goodbye to their families a couple weeks at a time. We don’t have to do that and we’re so grateful. It comes with it’s challenges, but when you look at those little ones in the face at then end of the day or in the morning there is just nothing better, no greater reward.
4. Fairchild Has Described Jimi as Her Soulmate
Speaking to US Magazine in 2010, Fairchild said of her marriage, “It is amazing. Jimi is my soulmate… I knew there was a deep connection there, but once you decide to be together, you find even more, and then to have a child together is a beautiful, beautiful thing for us to share and a dream come true.”
Jimi seconded those feelings in an interview with Great American Country, saying, “I think there was always something underlying there that we were trying to ignore… Then when the opportunity came, when all of us ended up single at the same time … those feelings, you were able to come out with them finally. It was like, ‘We’re single. Let’s get together.’”
5. They Tragically Lost Jimi’s Sister in 2015
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I want to tell you about my sister Joyce. One of the funniest people I've ever known. She was so full of life and light and if you were around her, chances are, you were laughing. She had one of the prettiest faces you'll ever lay eyes on. When she walked into a room you couldn't help but notice her. As pretty as that face and that smile was, she was even more beautiful on the inside. She loved with everything she had. She was a mom and a grandmother. It was everything to her. It's who she was. A nurturer and a protector. When I was a kid she taught me to hold my head up and be confident in who I was. That has always stuck with me. She always claimed that she wanted a little brother so bad that she prayed me into this world… and I always believed her. As hard as we knew how, we prayed to keep her in this world with us but somehow it wasn't meant to be. My heart is so broken today and it will forever have a hole in it. Joyce Marie, I love you so much and our lives will never be the same without you. I will always hold on to the memories and cherish the time that God blessed me & my family with being able to love you. You live forever in our hearts.
In 2015, Jimi and Karen lost Jimi’s sister, Joyce Marie Westbrook Morgan, to cancer.
Jimi took to social media with a post about her passing.
“I want to tell you about my sister Joyce. One of the funniest people I’ve ever known. She was so full of life and light and if you were around her, chances are, you were laughing. She had one of the prettiest faces you’ll ever lay eyes on. When she walked into a room you couldn’t help but notice her,” he wrote.
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