The Higgins

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The Higgins
John, Eileen, and Kathleen Higgins, June 14, 2008, Vancouver, Canada
John, Eileen, and Kathleen Higgins, June 14, 2008, Vancouver, Canada
Background information
OriginDelta, British Columbia, Canada
Years active1998–present
LabelsOpen Road
MembersJohn Higgins
Eileen Higgins
Kathleen Higgins
Past membersMary Higgins
James Higgins

The Higgins are a multi-award-winning Canadian country music group from Delta, British Columbia. The Higgins comprise three siblings: John (born June 4, 1982), Eileen (born July 17, 1986), and Kathleen Higgins (born November 11, 1988). They have charted a total of three singles on the Canadian Country Music charts, two of which were Top 15. Videos for "Flower Child", "Real Thing", and "Second Hand Car" all went to No. 3 on CMT's Chevy Cross Canada Countdown. The Higgins are songwriters as well as musicians, having written or co-written nine tracks on their national debut album Real Thing. The Higgins were nominated for CCMA Group of the Year in 2008 and 2009, and have won six BCCMA awards including Album of the Year and Group of the Year (2008).[1][2]

The group is best known for its vocal harmonies, and character onstage. The Higgins combine their country roots, pop influences and a Celtic family background into "their unique musical sound", and have been featured on TV shows and radio across Canada.[3][4][5]




The Higgins grew up in Delta, British Columbia, as 3 of the 7 siblings in their Irish/Hungarian family. They began singing as young children, performing in local musicals and schools. They developed as musicians, matured as individuals, and committed their lives perfecting their music. The band's earliest incarnation included younger brother James, on drums, and their sister Mary on vocals. Mary left the group in 2005, in order to pursue other interests.

Musical influences[edit]

The Higgins musical influences come from Emmylou Harris, Fleetwood Mac, the Dixie Chicks, The Corrs, James Taylor, Celtic, deep South traditional forms of folk, blues and country. They write, arrange and accompany themselves on a variety of both modern and traditional songs.[6] [7] [8]

Overcoming adversity[edit]

In 1998, John broke his back in a workplace accident, when a forklift crushed him in a bottle-recycling plant. It made him a wheelchair user for almost a year. Formerly a basketball hopeful, the 16-year-old had to find something else to do. A friend lent him a battered, acoustic, steel-string guitar while he was in his wheelchair, and he and his sisters taught each other to play. After John's recovery, the group worked hard on developing their distinctive sound, and discovered they had a creative skill for songwriting.

John later became a spokesperson for WorkSafeBC, an organization dedicated to workplace safety. The Higgins performed at the WorkSafeBC 50th Anniversary, in June 2008.[2][9][10]

Personal life[edit]

Just before their Canadian debut album, Real Thing, was released in June 2008, two-thirds of The Higgins had weddings. John was married in April, his new wife travelling with the group, working behind the scenes. Eileen followed suit and married in May 2008, though her new husband generally stays home while The Higgins go on tour.[11]

In December 2008, Eileen announced on The Higgins' Myspace blog, that she and her husband Blake are expecting the birth of their first child in late February 2009. On March 1, 2009, Eileen gave birth to a girl, Lauren Marie (6 lbs 6oz).

Awards and honors[edit]


In September 2006, they were honored with their own star on the Merritt Mountain Music Festival's Walk of Stars, in Merritt, British Columbia, Canada. Each year the town features a giant festival of the country music industry's top performers. Past performers include Reba McEntire and Carrie Underwood.[12][13]

In November 2006, The Higgins were invited to represent Canada at the Guangdong International Tourism & Cultural Festival in China. For a week, they performed in places such as the 60,000 seat capacity Tian-He Stadium, and the Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall, in Guangzhou, China.[8][14]

They also performed at the British Columbia Country Music Association Awards, after they were nominated for Country Group/Duo of the Year 2006.


In 2007, The Higgins were nominated again with the BCCMA's, this time in 3 categories : Entertainer of The Year, Group/Duo of The Year, and the Gaylord Wood Memorial Award for traditional country performers.[15][16]


The Higgins "Flower Child" video was nominated in April 2008, for a LEO Award in the "Best Best Music Video" Category.[17][18]

In September 2008, The Higgins presented at the 2008 Canadian Country Music Association Awards Show. Eileen Higgins took home a CCMA All-Star Band Award (Special Instrument Category – Mandolin), from the event. The Higgins were also nominated as CCMA Band/Duo of The Year, which later went to the songwriters of their hit single "Real Thing" : Deric Ruttan, Chris Thorsteinson and Dave Wasyliw (both of Country Group Doc Walker).[19][20][21]

In October 2008, The Higgins won 6 BCCMA Awards : Album of the Year (Real Thing), Group of the Year, Single of the Year (Flower Child), SOCAN Song of the Year (Flower Child), Video of the Year (Stephano Barberis for Flower Child), and Roots/Canadiana Group of the Year.[1][22]

2008 also brought The Higgins as nominations for a CRMA, and an Indie Award.[23][24]


In July 2009, The Higgins were nominated for 3 Canadian Country Music Associations (CCMA) Awards: Group/Duo of the Year, Roots Artist of the Year, and Eileen, for Special Instrument (Mandolin).[25]

Their album "Real Thing" was also nominated for a 2009 Western Canadian Music Award, (Country Album of the Year).[26]


The Higgins performed at the 4th Annual Merritt Walk of Stars Gala, in June 2007, aired on CMT. This was their third year in a row they've performed at the ceremonies.[27][28]

In 2006, the group made a music video (of their song "Hey Jamie"), for the CBC Television show "Make Some Noise". Other media appearances for 2006 included, CBC, Global TV, CityTV, CMT, CFJC-TV7[5][29]

In February 2008, The Higgins released their first music video for "Flower Child", directed by award-winning director Stephano Barberis to CMT Canada. It peaked at No. 3 on the network's Chevy Cross Canada Countdown in June 2008. Their videos for "Real Thing" (in 2008), and "Second Hand Car"(in 2009) were also directed by Barberis, and both reached No. 3 on the countdown.[10] [30]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Details
Coming Home for Christmas
  • Release date: October 27, 2003
  • Label: self-released
Wild Minds
  • Release date: October 4, 2004
  • Label: self-released
The Higgins
  • Release date: April 13, 2007
  • Label: self-released
Real Thing
Dreamers Like Us
  • Release date: June 8, 2010
  • Label: Open Road Recordings


Year Single Peak positions Album
2008 "Flower Child" Real Thing
"Real Thing" 99
2009 "Second Hand Car"
2010 "Free Like Love" Dreamers Like Us
"Dreamers Like Us"
"Burn You Back"
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Music videos[edit]

Year Video Director
2008 "Flower Child" Stephano Barberis
"Real Thing"
2009 "Second Hand Car"
2010 "Free Like Love"

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Result
2008 Canadian Country Music Association Group or Duo of the Year Nominated
2009 Group or Duo of the Year Nominated
Roots Artist or Group of the Year Nominated
2010 Group or Duo of the Year Nominated
Roots Artist or Group of the Year Nominated


  1. ^ a b "Family country trio the real thing". Archived from the original on 5 November 2012. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  2. ^ a b "The Higgins hit Open Road with retooled Real Thing". Archived from the original on 5 November 2012. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  3. ^ CBC – Make Some Noise
  4. ^ CBC British Columbia – Features – Sounds Like Summer
  5. ^ a b CBC – Make Some Noise – Music
  6. ^ Turner Music & Events - Live music booking: The Higgins
  7. ^ Country Music News Canadian country Music Artists CD's CDs CD Nashville report
  8. ^ a b Family ties
  9. ^ The Higgins :: John, Eileen and Kathleen
  10. ^ a b South Delta Leader – Your Best source for Local Community News delivered in print or online
  11. ^ Family trio in harmony for this gem
  12. ^ :: George Canyon Official Website ::
  13. ^ ASPLogin
  14. ^ The Higgins :: News
  15. ^ Awards Show 2005
  16. ^ Home
  17. ^ LEO AWARDS Nominees 2008 Archived 2010-04-14 at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ LEO AWARDS 2008
  19. ^ "CCMA Industry Award winners". Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  20. ^ [1][dead link]
  21. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-26. Retrieved 2011-03-12.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  22. ^ "Home | Bethany Community Church | Mendon, MA". Retrieved 2020-03-09.
  23. ^ "Canadian Music Week 2009". Archived from the original on 2009-02-23. Retrieved 2010-01-12.
  24. ^ "Rogers Wireless CMW 2008". Archived from the original on 30 June 2007. Retrieved 13 January 2022.
  25. ^ "Home - Canadian Country Music Association". Retrieved 2020-03-09.
  26. ^ "Western Canadian Music Awards, Festival and Conference". Archived from the original on 2009-05-02. Retrieved 2010-01-24.
  27. ^ Merritt Tourism – THINGS TO DO
  28. ^ GetAwayBC
  29. ^ The Higgins :: Events
  30. ^ - Chevy Cross Canada Countdown

External links[edit]

Official websites[edit]

Interviews and other articles[edit]