Hit HBO show theme song written by local group

Created: 03/06/2014 6:43 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

It’s a wildly popular song around the world right now – and it comes from right here in Albuquerque.

The song is “Far From Any Road”, the title tune of the HBO smash hit series “True Detective”. The musicians are Brett and Rennie Sparks – The Handsome Family. We caught up with them Thursday afternoon in their home recording studio.

“It was recorded in this room almost ten years ago to the day,” Brett said after the couple sang “Far From Any Road” for us. “I mean this is from the back catalog. It was recorded right after we moved back to New Mexico. I’m originally from Albuquerque.”

“ The song was inspired, I think, by being bitten by fire ants in the driveway,” Rennie said. “I had no idea ants could bite!”

Rennie, a New Yorker originally, is a poet and short story writer who turned to songwriting when her composer husband needed help with lyrics. The result – a dozen strangely beautiful albums in a 20 year career.

The music comes from the darkest inscrutable roots of the old American folk music tree – songs about daggers and orphan girls and bottomless holes and deserts where the poison creosote grows.

“Far From Any Road” is instantly recognizable from the first iconic strums of its A Minor chord – as unforgettable as “True Detective” itself. Right now the song is number one on “Spotify” in the United Kingdom – and especially popular in Ukraine! The success of “True Detective” is rapidly opening doors for the Handsome Family – so – have they gone Hollywood on us?

“I bought a really fancy new dish-rack,” Rennie said. “Our dishes are drying in a top of the line dish-rack right now – it’s all stainless steel.’

“Naw, nothing’s changed,” Brett laughed. “It’s still the same.”

“All we want to do is sit around writing songs,” Rennie said. “That’s what makes us happy, so this gives us the chance to do that more.”

The Handsome Family will be touring in Europe during April and May, with their hearts back here at home in New Mexico. Visit their website at

KOB welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the rules of conduct set forth in our Terms of Use. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Use.

Join Our Email List

Form not appearing? Click Here.