Before Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson raised a media sh-tstorm with his comments about homosexuality being a sin and African-Americans loving the pre-Civil Rights Era, the Robertson Family were mostly making headlines for starring in cable's highest-rated TV series and scoring a surprise hit album with their Christmas record, Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas.
It was during that pre-scandal time that Fuse spoke with 16-year-old Sadie Robertson and her 17-year-old brother John Luke. We learned about their Christmas traditions, what it was like singing with Luke Bryan and Alison Krauss and whether they'd consider touring. We also got their reaction to Duck the Halls consistently outselling Lady Gaga's ARTPOP nearly every week since it dropped. Here's what they had to say.
Your Christmas album came out one week before Lady Gaga's new album. Aside from ARTPOP's No. 1 debut week, your record has outsold hers every week. How does it feel to outsell Gaga?
Sadie: Whoa. That is crazy. [Laughs] That's so weird. I had no idea. I didn't even know we were that high up [on the charts].
So the public response is overwhelmingly positive. What about your friends, what do they think of you guys singing?
Sadie: The response so far has been very positive. They did think it's kinda weird at first, but I don’t think they even know how big [the album] is.
Whose idea was it to record a Christmas record?
Sadie: Missy [Robertson, wife of the second-born son Jase Robertson] has always been the singer of the family. And from what I understand, and I could be wrong on this, but she thought we had it in us [to make an album] and that it would be a fun idea to try singing. None of us really knew we could sing so it came as a surprise to everyone when we learned we had good voices and could sing as a family.
Were you more excited or nervous to sing on the album?
Sadie: I was so nervous. I don't usually sing for anybody except for my mom [Korie Robertson], so when they asked me to sing on it, I was freaking out. Gahhh. Buddy Cannon, he was like the producer of the thing, he had to help me to get my confidence up. But then it was a lot of fun.
Did you pick your own songs?
Sadie: Missy was in charge of a lot of it, but I did choose to sing "Away in a Manger." And I got to sing with Alison Krauss on that, so that was pretty awesome.
You guys also have country stars like Luke Bryan and George Strait on the album. Was it intimidating to sing with professionals?
Sadie: We all know Luke since he's been friends with my dad [Willie Robertson] for a long time, so that was just fun. But I haven't actually gotten to meet Alison because we recorded at different times. But I'm looking forward to meeting her and thanking her, because she did a really great job.
What singers do you two listen to for fun?
Sadie: Luke Bryan is our boy.
John Luke: George Strait is my favorite. Meeting him was like a dream.
Sadie: We wish! Our parents are way cooler than us.
What are your plans for Christmas?
Sadie: This year we'll be listening to our own album.
You actually sit down and listen to it?
Sadie: We really do! We have a lot of fun with it. We think it's funny.
What's your favorite song on the album?
Sadie: The "Ragin' Cajun Redneck Christmas" was my favorite.
John Luke: Yeah, that's pretty much the one.
What kind of Christmas traditions do you have?
Sadie: Every year we have a full Louisiana seafood meal and that's a lot of fun. I think the best Christmas memories are… well, every year my mom does a special gift, and it's always the most random gift you could possibly imagine. And she thinks it's hilarious. Every year she gets us all together and nobody else thinks it's that funny, but she thinks it's hilarious.
John Luke: She's the only one laughing the whole time, but then we start laughing because she's laughing so hard. She buys weird stuffed animals or random books. It's like inside jokes, but inside jokes she has with herself.
Do you think you'll ever do any other projects that involve singing?
Sadie: I don't know about that. We get different opportunities just about every day, so we're taking it easy and seeing what happens. We never did think we'd have a Christmas album, though, so you never know.
Would you ever consider touring?
Sadie: We've discussed it as a family, but life is just so crazy right now. But like I said, who knows in the future?