The Civil Wars Break Up: Hear Farewell Song & Read Their Goodbye Messages

Gary Miller/FilmMagic

Joy Williams and John Paul White pose on the Gibson Guitars bus at the Gibson Showroom on October 14, 2012 in Austin, Texas.

Although they had been on hiatus since 2012, the inevitable is now confirmed: the Civil Wars are no more.

The folk duo broke the news Tuesday via press release, along with quotes from band members Joy Williams and John Paul White. Additionally, the duo shared one final song, a cover of “You Are My Sunshine,” which had been a b-side to the band’s Barton Hollow limited edition vinyl. It's available for download on their site.  

Says band member Joy Williams:

I am saddened and disappointed by the ending of this duo, to say the very least. JP is a tremendous musician, and I will always be grateful for the music we were able to create together. I sincerely hope that ‘You Are My Sunshine’ will be accepted as a token of my gratitude for every single person that has supported our duo throughout the years. I’m so thankful and my heart is full. Looking ahead, I’m excited to share the music that I am writing and recording in the midst of this difficult transition. I’ve loved being back in the studio, and have missed performing live. I look forward to seeing you soon.

And band member John Paul White adds:

I would like to express sincere thanks to all who were a part of the arc of The Civil Wars—from the beginning, to the end, and all points in between. My deep appreciation goes out to all who supported, disseminated, and enjoyed the music. Whatever shape or form the next chapter takes, thanks for being a large part of this one.

Despite not touring behind it, the Civil Wars’ self-titled 2013 album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with 116,000 copies moved in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The band had been on hiatus since Nov. 2012 over "internal discord and irreconcilable differences of ambition." Williams conducted press for the self-titled release while White remained silent.

In their brief history (their debut LP Barton Hollow dropped in 2011), the Civil Wars won an impressive four Grammys. They received a good deal of crossover notoriety for their Taylor Swift collaboration “Safe and Sound,” which appeared on 2011’s The Hunger Games: Songs from District 12 and Beyond.

Judging from their statements, it seems at least Williams will continue to record, release, and perform music.