Music duo in perfect harmony

There are no boundaries when creating or performing - what you hear is an auditory representation of Rouchelle and Darren Peens’ (Digby and the Lullaby) thoughts, memories and emotions.
It is a snapshot of who they are, where they have been, and most important, their love for each other, writes Monique Basson.

ROUCHELLE Hübsch is tiny.

When she stands on a stage with her piano in front of her, she almost disappears. But the minute she starts to sing, it is easy to forget that she is only 28 years old. Her voice has raw honesty, depth and a wise and engaging maturity.

Accompanied by husband Darren Peens (45) on guitar and backing vocals, this singer-songwriter duo’s, indie-folk music is emotional, personal, gentle, careful and unstoppably honest. Just like their love for each other.

Living a true love story, the road towards chasing their dreams has been uneven and imperfect, but that is what makes Digby and the Lullaby so special - their best memories and inspirations come form the unpredictable aspects of pursuing their art and love.

The couple withdrew from the music scene with the birth of their son, but are back to cast their indie-folk spell on audiences.

It all started with a song ...

It all started with a song and it was love at first sight or rather at the first perfect note.

“In 2009 Darren’s recording studio joined forces with a radio station in Port Elizabeth to find local singer-songwriters in a competition called Do You Rock,” said Rouchelle.

“Armed with my song about finding a husband - I was very lonely at that time - I entered the competition and met Darren, who was part of the judging panel on the night of the finals.”

Not only did she win the competition and the chance to work with Darren in the studio, but also a husband.

From day one, their mutual fascination with music and adoration towards their favourite artists was the springboard from which they took off.

The couple moved to Cape Town where they pursued their music dreams - releasing their first album, The Somewhere Wind, four years later.

Recorded in New York City with producer Kieren Kelly, the album is a reflection of their life stories and memories - all infused with true love and adoration. It bears resemblance to the works of Angus and Julia Stone, the same folksy element captured alongside its distinctly South African influences.

The road to their first album was not easy.

“We had to sell everything we had to go to New York,” says Rouchelle. “With only our passion for music left, we had to sleep on the studio floor while working on our debut album. But we came home with an album that we are very proud of.”

After spending six years in Cape Town, they returned to Darren’s home town, Cape St Francis, two years ago. This move also brought Rouchelle closer to where she grew up in Uitenhage.

They thrive on intimate performances

“Creating, producing, and performing music give us all the thrills, happiness, and the ability to express ourselves we could ever ask for. It is just so natural, it is just a part of us.”

They thrive on intimate performances. From the first note their audience is drawn into a world of soulful and emotional music.

“We love to take people on a journey with music,” says Rouchelle. “And then there is the romance. It is inevitable.

“It is our biggest goal to inspire people to fall in love with themselves and one another, with a melody or something we say. But without making anyone feel they are being judged.

“We want to leave a lasting and positive impact on the lives of people listening to our music.”

National Tour - Uitenhage

Digby and the Lullaby is on a national tour from August to October to promote their single Rythm. The tour will see the inspirational duo visit among others Uitenhage, Jeffreys Bay, Durban, East London, Bloemfontein, George, Cape Town and Graaff Reinet.

  • They will perform at the Philadelphia Church in Uitenhage at 19:00 on August 14. Tickets are R120 per person and are available at www.webtickets.co.za.