Joey, of Joey + Rory, recovering from cancer
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
– Joey of the duo Joey + Rory has cervical cancer, but is cancer-free, Rory Feek, her husband, wrote in a blog posted today.
The couple had a baby, Indiana, earlier this year and have been off the road for about six months.
Feek wrote, "In May, at a routine appointment with her gynecologist, Joey's doctor discovered something that concerned her. She said there was a mass on Joey's cervix and that she wanted do a biopsy, and would let us know the results when she got them back. A few days later, Joey woke up from a nap with a message from the doctor, asking that we come in and talk with her that afternoon. When we walked into the her office, the doctor was clearly upset. Before she could even say the word "cancer", her eyes welled up with tears and sobbing she said, "I'm so sorry Joey...". My wife bravely smiled and said, " it's gonna be okay, just tell us". And so she did.
Joey has cervical cancer."
"It's a strange thing when your doctor starts crying before you do. Especially when it's a doctor you don't really even know. This was only the second time we had ever seen her. Strangely, the first time was when we were at the hospital after the birth of Indiana, and she is the one who took me out into the hall and told me that she believed that our baby had Down Syndrome. I was completely caught off guard. In the excitement and joy of Indy's birth, none of us had even given her little almond eyes a thought. But from that moment on, I knew our lives and our story would forever be different. And once again, as we heard this sweet doctor say "it's just not fair" through her tears... we knew that our lives and our story was taking another unexpected turn.
When we got home and the news finally sank in, Joey only worried about one thing. It wasn't "why did this happen to me" or "am I going to be okay", or a hundred other questions that I would've had. Joey only thought of our baby. She cried and cried worrying about Indiana, and what this might mean to her... what if she couldn't continue breastfeeding her, or will Indy's sleep schedule be interrupted, or worse yet...what if she won't get to watch this precious gift grow up?"
"I can honestly say that in the six months that we've been off the road and taking a break from the music business, I haven't picked up a guitar once and Joey and I haven't sang a single song together. But when I came in the house that day and saw Joey holding Indiana in her arms, singing "I Need Thee Every Hour"... I went into the closet, pulled out a guitar and came and sat beside her. For a half-hour straight, we held our little one and we cried and we sang these words over and over.
I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain
Come quickly and abide, or life is in vain
I need Thee, O I need Thee
Every hour I need Thee
O bless me now, my Savior
I come to Thee
"And then, like turning off a faucet,... we said a prayer, dried our tears and decided to put our trust in Him."
"A few days later we were in another office seeing a gynecology/oncology specialist in Nashville and he told us that though the mass was already 4 cm and growing aggressively, we had caught it early. He recommended that Joey have a radical hysterectomy right away to remove the cancer and surrounding areas."
"And so, this past Friday, we loaded up our four-month-old baby, and along with our older girls and Joey's mama... drove to Centennial hospital in Nashville. And soon after, my brave little wife, kissed us all goodbye and smiled as they wheeled her away to surgery."
"About 6 hours later, they wheeled her out of the recovery room and though she was still groggy and in some pain, she waved to us and smiled again and we walked with her as they wheeled her to her room."
"The next morning about 11 am, she got to come home to our farmhouse.
It's been five days now, and Joey's getting stronger every day. Her swelling is going down and spirits continue to go up. We had a follow-up appointment with the oncologist yesterday and he said that the margins and the lymph nodes he removed came back clean, so there's no more cancer in her body and she won't need chemo or radiation. There in the waiting room after the appointment, we held each other and our baby, and we cried once more."
"I heard a preacher tell a short story one time about God and a tandem bicycle. I'm reminded of that story today. It's only 3 minutes long, but the lesson has stayed with me for years."
"Yes, it has been quite a year for us so far. In the past six months, God has taken us places we never dreamed we would go. It's been terrifying and thrilling all at the same time. We never know what tomorrow will bring...none of us do. But what an incredible journey life is. We are just going to continue to trust Him and hold to each other and... pedal, pedal!"
The duo placed third on CMT's competition Can You Duet in 2008. They signed with Sugar Hill and had a hit single with "Cheater, Cheater."
They have released seven albums, including several religious discs.
More news for Joey + Rory
CD reviews for Joey + Rory
Hymns That Are Important To Us
There have been many artists throughout the year who've tried their hand at offering up songs for the faithful, mining their past for the hymns of old. Yet. it's the rare few who've delivered the emotional punch that Joey + Rory manage. With Joey Feek battling the final stages of cancer and choosing to forego treatment, the couple took advantage of Joey's good days to head into the studio to craft this collection of time-honored hymns that resonates with deep emotion. »»»
Country Classics: A Tapestry Of Our Musical Heritage
With their dedication to traditional country sounds, you may be a little surprised by Joey + Rory's song choices on the covers album, "Country Classics: A Tapestry Of Our Musical Heritage." There isn't a George Jones or Merle Haggard tune in the bunch! Although all these songs are fine ones, many of them were also big hits. For instance, the pair sing Crystal Gayle's big hit, "Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue," as well as John Denver's "Back Home Again. »»»
Joey+Rory - His & Hers
On their third release, "His and Hers," husband and wife duo Joey and Rory practice their marital vows quite literally. The couple split the vocal duties right down the middle, alternating lead on each of the 12 tracks. It was a conscious decision to give listeners a feel for each of their voices. The duo is best known for finishing third on CMT's 2008 show Can You Duet and for their single, Cheater Cheater.
The opener Josephine is an emotional letter from a Civil War soldier »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk
When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Carlile warms hearts with empathetic thoughts
Brandi Carlile, dressed festively with a Santa hat, began her mid-week concert set with Joni Mitchell's "River" and closed with the carol "O Holy Night." In between, she sang about an equal measure of old and new songs. And on this first night of a short acoustic tour, Carlile was both in fine spirits and voice.... »»»
Concert Review: Daniels wears out bows, but music endures
After each of the first few songs Charlie Daniels played, his 'fiddle tech (?)' exchanged his bow. Is this because he was playing particularly hard? Perhaps. Whatever the case, Daniels and his five-piece band clearly appeared to be giving it their all during the act's hour-and-a-half set.
As it is the Christmas month, Daniels sang a... »»»
Country News Digest
Elsewhere in the news
Currently at the CST blogs
Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn have powerhouse individual talents; each has followed an estimable career path to where they find themselves today: making complex, but spare, records, writing music together and touring with their son Juno. Their new release, "Echoes In The Valley" features mostly songs written by Fleck and Washburn, banjos, Washburn's strong vocals and very little else.... »»»
Legends don't come any more legendary than Chris Hillman. The roll call of bands that comprises Hillman's half century in music reads like a wing exhibit at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame; Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Manassas, the Souther Hillman Furay Band, the Desert Rose Band,... »»»
William Shakespeare noted a few centuries back that a rose by any other
name would be equally aromatic, and that general idea has musical
implications as well. The Cadillac Three knows a thing or two about maintaining
a sonic identity after a name change;... »»»
Those aware of the late Owsley "Bear" Stanley likely know him for one of two reasons - his pioneering work manufacturing lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in San Francisco during the mid-to-late 1960s and his role as an innovative sound engineer. Most notably, Bear worked...... »»»
Headed into 2015, Imelda May was on a hit streak. Her rockabilly career was in full swing, nurtured by the likes of former Squeeze keyboardist Jools Holland and guitar icon Jeff Beck. Her albums routinely topped the charts in her native Ireland.... »»»
For most artists, eight years is a fair amount of time in their careers. For Nikki Lane, eight years represents the entirety of her recorded history, and she's filled that relatively short time span with a highlight reel of impressive accomplishments, not the least of which would be actually... »»»
For The Avett Brothers, MerleFest is a coming home of sorts. This year's edition of the MerleFest "traditional-plus" music festival in Wilkesboro, N.C., the event's 30th anniversary, a milestone...... »»»
Walker Hayes has a lot of Sam Hunt in his music, in that he mixes a lot of hip-hop in with his country. Traditionalists will have trouble with his unorthodox approach. Kids, though, raised on just as much Drake as Paisley, will likely eat it up. »»»
From A Room: Volume 2
There is no bigger artist in country music today, perhaps even in American music, than Chris Stapleton. His appeal reaches beyond just the commercial country fans for his gritty bluesy approach. 2015's "Traveller" set a high bar, which was met by this year's release of "From A Room: Volume 1," which won Album of the Year in the 51st CMA Awards. »»»
Down Home Sessions EP
Upon first glance at the track list of Cole Swindell's fourth installment of the "Down Home Sessions" series, one may get the impression that it is a covers EP. It features several chart toppers from other artists, including Luke Bryan's "Roller Coaster" and Thomas Rhett's "Get Me Some Of That." »»»
The Rest of Our Lives
The first full album from Tim McGraw and Faith Hill is an inspired effort, even though some of its songwriters may surprise you. The title cut, for instance, features pop ginger Ed Sheeran on its credits, while Meghan Trainor contributed to "Roll the Dice." »»»
Bloodshot Records' 13 Days of Xmas
Label holiday albums can sometimes be like office white elephant gift exchanges because there's a little bit of everything on the table. Some stuff you like, while other things may have been better left unwrapped. »»»
Blake Shelton's 11th studio album finds The Voice advisor in a contented, one might even say homey, frame of mind. The opening track and first single "I'll Name the Dogs" sets the tone. It's a rollicking ode to domesticity that manages to make household chore distribution ("You find the spot and I'll find the money / You be the pretty and I'll be the funny") both romantic and amusing. »»»