Ever since the release of her self-titled 2005 debut album, Brandi Carlile has been releasing incredible country and Americana music. We're particularly partial to her supergroup The Highwomen. But outside of music, she's always been an activist who is heavily involved with charity work, which is exactly how she met her wife Catherine Shepherd.
Sheperd was based on the U.K. at the time where she had been managing Paul McCartney's charity for over a decade. Her initial relationship with the singer-songwriter was all remote.
"We met through our activism and interest in charity," Carlile told Rolling Stone. "We communicated for about a year, and the entire time I thought I was talking to somebody who was 65. It was an interesting way to fall in love."
Shepherd came to New York City to work on a project for McCartney. It was there that she met Carlile backstage at one of her shows. It was immediate sparks between the two. As the story goes, it was clear they had found something special. They tied the knot in 2012.
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Catherine Carlile is 40 today!! I’m convinced that she actually created this whole virus thing so that I wouldn’t be able to throw her a party. I spent the day alone with this mad English woman cooking and eating chocolate. I could listen to her talk forever. There’s no one in the world I’d rather spend my life with. She’s insightful and firey and she sees every persons inner 8 year old. Every year is a gift. Happy 40th birthday Cath! I love you ❤️
Since then, they have welcomed two children together, daughters Evangeline and Elijah. By the way, their children are seriously adorable if you needed yet another reason to follow Carlile on Instagram.
Read More: The 10 Best Brandi Carlile Songs, Ranked
Even while expanding their family, the couple never lost their dedication to charity work. In 2017, Carlile released the charity album, Cover Stories, which brought huge names in music like Adele, Dolly Parton, The Avett Brothers, Old Crow Medicine Show and Kris Kristofferson together to cover her songs from her 2007 album The Story. All proceeds were donated to the nonprofit War Child UK to benefit children affected by war. Her Looking Out Foundation continues to raise funds for those in need.
"I would be lying if I said that I could focus on one cause for the rest of my life," she told Rolling Stone. "An artist does their best work in big bursts of light: We make a record, we tour, and then we try to make another record. When I'm most honest with myself, activism is the same way."
Though Shepherd prefers to remain behind the scenes, we were able to see her wow on the red carpet with her wife at the 2019 Grammy Awards where Carlisle brought home three wins. Is it just me or are they regularly two of the best dressed regardless of what red carpet they are walking? The sweet family prefers to live away from the big city and has settled in Maple Valley in Washington State.