Love and Theft Band
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Love and Theft Band
Love and Theft
Love and Theft.jpg
Love and Theft performing in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. Stephen Barker Liles (left) and Eric Gunderson
Background information
Origin Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
Genres Country
Martina McBride
Robert Ellis Orrall
Website Official website
  • Eric Gunderson
  • Stephen Barker Liles
Brian Bandas

Love and Theft is an American country music group founded by Stephen Barker Liles, Eric Gunderson, and Brian Bandas, all three of whom alternated as lead singers and acoustic guiarists. Signed to Lyric Street Records subsidiary Carolwood Records in 2009, Love and Theft made their chart debut in early 2009 with the single "Runaway," which reached the Top 10 on Billboard Hot Country Songs. The band's debut album, World Wide Open, was released on August 25, 2009.

In 2011, following the departure of Bandas, Love and Theft continued as a duo consisting of Gunderson and Liles. The duo moved to RCA Records Nashville that year and released the single "Angel Eyes", which became their first number 1 single. It and the Top 40 singles "Runnin' Out of Air" and "If You Ever Get Lonely" all appear on their second, self-titled album.

Musical career

Love and Theft was formed in 2006 by Brian Bandas, Stephen Barker Liles, and Eric Gunderson, all three of whom alternated on lead vocals. After performing before ASCAP executives, they were recommended to an A&R executive for Lyric Street Records, who signed them to Lyric Street's sister label Carolwood Records in 2009.[1] Just prior, they were also signed as an opening act for Taylor Swift's 2008 tour. Liles is the subject of "Hey Stephen" which appears on Swift's 2008 album Fearless.[2] He also co-wrote the track "Wrong Baby Wrong Baby Wrong" on Martina McBride's 2009 album Shine. "Kissin' in Cars," which was featured on the soundtrack for the film Country Strong, was also co-written by Liles.

Love and Theft made their first Grand Ole Opry performance on March 28, 2009,[3] shortly before the release of the debut single "Runaway." This song was written by Stephen Barker Liles, Canaan Smith, and Rob Blackledge of Blackjack Billy, and is included on the band's debut album, World Wide Open. The album entered at No. 10 on the Country chart, selling 12,500 copies in its first week.[4] In addition, Love and Theft recorded a video for "Don't Wake Me," another cut from the album.[5] "Runaway" peaked at number 10 on the country chart in November 2009, shortly before Carolwood was consolidated with Lyric Street.[6] "Dancing in Circles" was released as the album's second single in December 2009, and reached a peak of number 25 in March 2010. On April 14, Disney Music Group announced the closure of Lyric Street Records, leaving Love and Theft without a record deal.[7]

Love and Theft became a duo in 2011 when founding member Brian Bandas left the band.[8] The remaining two members then signed with RCA Nashville in 2011.[9] "Angel Eyes" was digitally released on November 8, 2011 and released to radio six days later. In August 2012, "Angel Eyes" became Love and Theft's first Number One single on the Hot Country Songs chart. It was the lead single from their self-titled album, which was released via RCA on July 24, 2012.[10] The album's second and third singles, "Runnin' Out of Air and "If You Ever Get Lonely," were both minor Top 40 hits on the Billboard Country Airplay charts.

The duo released "Night That You'll Never Forget" in early 2014 as the lead single to an upcoming third album. It reached a peak of number 34 on the Billboard Country Airplay charts and in October 2014, it was announced that Love and Theft had parted ways with Sony Music Nashville. Almost an entire second album was lost (including "Going Out Like That," which Reba cut in 2015), the songs untouchable for five years, unless Stephen and Eric paid the hefty price of $13,000 for each song.[11] They self-released "Whiskey on My Breath" via Hate & Purchase Music later in the year,[12] and their third studio album, also titled Whiskey on My Breath, was released on February 10, 2015. Their Can't Wait For the Weekend tour took place 2015-2016, taking place throughout the United States.

In March 2016, Love and Theft signed a new record deal with Curb Records, which immediately re-issued their previous single, "Whiskey on My Breath," to country radio.[13] "Candyland" was released to country radio on October 10, 2016, and will serve as the first single from their forthcoming fourth studio album.

Personal lives

Gunderson married Emily Hagar in 2010.[14] The couple had their first baby on March 10, 2013,[15] a boy named Camden William. Stephen Barker Liles got engaged to Jenna Michelle Kennedy on May 28, 2013. On Dec 2, 2013 they welcomed son Jett Barker Liles. On December 26, 2016 Stephen announced they were having a second child (girl). Liles and Kennedy married Aug 24, 2014.[16][17][18][19]


Studio albums

Title Album details Peak chart positions Sales
US Country
US Indie
World Wide Open 10 36 --
Love and Theft
  • Release date: July 24, 2012
  • Label: RCA Nashville
  • Formats: CD, music download
4 21 --
Whiskey on My Breath[24]
  • Release date: February 10, 2015
  • Label: Hate & Purchase Music
  • Formats: CD, music download
26 -- 16
"--" denotes releases that did not chart

Extended plays

Title Album details
Live in Savannah
  • Release date: September 30, 2008
  • Label: Lyric Street Records
  • Formats: CD, music download


Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications
US Country
US Country Airplay
2009 "Runaway" 10 -- 65 -- World Wide Open
"Dancing in Circles" 25 -- -- --
2011 "Angel Eyes" 1 -- 32 68 Love and Theft
2012 "Runnin' Out of Air" 38 35 -- --
2013 "If You Ever Get Lonely" 43 34 -- --
2014 "Night That You'll Never Forget" 38 34 -- -- N/A
"Whiskey on My Breath" 31 42 -- -- Whiskey on My Breath
2016 "Candyland" -- 55 -- -- TBD
"--" denotes releases that did not chart

Music videos

Year Video Director
2009 "Don't Wake Me"[32] Devin Pense
"Runaway"[33] Kristin Barlowe
"Dancing in Circles"[34]
2012 "Angel Eyes"[35] Chris Hicky
"Runnin' Out of Air" Mason Dixon
2013 "If You Ever Get Lonely"[36]
2014 "Night That You'll Never Forget"[37]
2015 "Whiskey on My Breath"[38]

Awards and Nominations

Year Association Category Nominated Work Result
2012 Country Music Association Awards New Artist of the Year N/A Nominated
Vocal Duo of the Year N/A Nominated
2013 Academy of Country Music Awards Top New Vocal Duo/Group N/A Nominated
Top Vocal Duo N/A Nominated
CMT Music Awards Duo Video of the Year "Runnin' Out of Air" Nominated


  1. ^ "Artists A to Z: Love and Theft". Great American Country. Retrieved . 
  2. ^ Eileen Finan (2008-12-02). "Guy Behind Taylor Swift Love Song Revealed". Retrieved . 
  3. ^ "Love And Theft sets Opry debut". Country Standard Time. 2008-03-23. Retrieved . 
  4. ^ "Love And Theft Steal the Top Spot as the Biggest Selling Newly Released Artist Album This Week". Business Wire. September 2, 2009. 
  5. ^ Paxman, Bob (2009-06-15). "Wake-Up Call: New trio Love and Theft races out of the box with its fast-paced debut video, "Don't Wake Me"". Country Weekly. 16 (18): 49. 
  6. ^ David M. Ross (2009-11-03). "Lyric Street Shutters Carolwood Imprint". Music Row. Retrieved . 
  7. ^ "Covington, Fowler, Dickerson Follow Rascal Flatts to Disney Music Group". CMT. 15 April 2010. Retrieved 2010. 
  8. ^ Alanna Conaway (2010-12-01). "Love and Theft's Brian Bandas to Leave Group in New Year". AOL's The Boot. Retrieved . 
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-07. Retrieved . 
  10. ^ Erickson, Mark (26 March 2012). "Duo Love and Theft to Release "Love and Theft" on June 5, 2012". Roughstock. Retrieved 2012. 
  11. ^ Leight, Elias. "Country Duo Love And Theft Talk Being Dropped By Their Label: 'We're Still Hoping They Might Do the Right Thing'". Billboard. Retrieved 2018. 
  12. ^ Freeman, Jon (29 December 2014). "Reviews". Country Weekly. 21 (52): 69. ISSN 1074-3235. 
  13. ^ *Please enter your name. "Love and Theft Sign With Curb Records". Retrieved . 
  14. ^ Allison Takeda (2012-12-05). "Love and Theft's Eric Gunderson, Wife Emily Expecting a Son! - Us Weekly". Retrieved . 
  15. ^ "Country Music News | Nash Country Daily". Retrieved . 
  16. ^ Kay West (2014-08-24). "Stephen Barker Liles Marries Jenna Michelle Kennedy". Retrieved . 
  17. ^ "Baby on the Way for Stephen Barker Liles - Moms & Babies - Celebrity Babies and Kids - Moms & Babies -". Retrieved . 
  18. ^ Melody Chiu (2013-05-29). "Stephen Barker Liles Engaged to Jenna Michelle Kennedy". Retrieved . 
  19. ^ "Love and Theft's Eric Gunderson Welcomes Baby Boy". Retrieved . 
  20. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Country Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011. 
  21. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011. 
  22. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2015. 
  23. ^ "Upcoming Releases". Hits Daily Double. HITS Digital Ventures. Archived from the original on February 11, 2015. 
  24. ^ Finan, Eileen (November 21, 2014). "Hear Love and Theft's New Single 'Whiskey on My Breath'". People. Retrieved 2014. 
  25. ^ Matt Bjorke (March 18, 2015). "Country Album Chart Report For March 18, 2015". Roughstock. 
  26. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011. 
  27. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Country Airplay". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2012. 
  28. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Hot 100". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011. 
  29. ^ "Love and Theft Album & Song Chart History - Billboard Canadian Hot 100". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2012. 
  30. ^ "American single certifications - Love and Theft - Angel Eyes". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  31. ^ Bjorke, Matt (February 23, 2016). "The Top 30 Digital Singles: February 22, 2016". Roughstock. 
  32. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Don't Wake Me". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2011. 
  33. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Runaway". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2011. 
  34. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Dancing in Circles". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2011. 
  35. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Angel Eyes". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2012. 
  36. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : If You Ever Get Lonely". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2013. 
  37. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Night That You'll Never Forget". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2014. 
  38. ^ "CMT : Videos : Love and Theft : Whiskey on My Breath". Country Music Television. Retrieved 2015. 

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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