The separation is now a permanent parting of ways for The Civil Wars. Santa Cruz native Joy Williams and John Paul White announced on the band's website that they are officially breaking up almost two years after going on hiatus.

In late 2012, the duo pulled out of a world tour, citing irreconcilable differences. Their first album went gold and they won four Grammy Awards, but they chose not to tour after the release of their second album.

Sounds as if Civil Wars really did apply to these two.

As a parting gift, the duo are providing on their site a free download of "You Are My Sunshine," released in 2011 as a b-side to their limited edition "Barton Hollow 7" vinyl.

The musicians also released a combined statement. In it Williams offered an olive branch of sorts to her former music partner: "JP is a tremendous musician, and I will always be grateful for the music we were able to create together."

White stuck to a more standard thank-you farewell statement: "Whatever shape or form the next chapter takes, thanks for being a large part of this one."

Ann Tatko-Peterson provides celebrity commentary for the Bay Area News Group. Follow her at twitter.com/atatkopeterson.



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