April 25, 2016

Martha’s Trouble to rehab historical Opelika, AL house into studio/creative space

Husband-and-wife folk/rock duo Martha’s Trouble (aka Rob and Jen Slocumb) have purchased a historical Victorian house, originally built in 1910, in downtown Opelika, AL, and have already begun work on rehabbing the abode into a creative studio space in their hometown. The renovation should take approximately five months.

“We’ve wanted to do this for about four years, and we looked at a number of potential locations including warehouses,” says Rob. “This particular house came available in February,” adds Jen, “and we liked the look of it and the vibe of the place. We wanted something that would be part of the town, to help support and grow the arts scene here, to support the community, and a space that would inspire artistic endeavors and creativity.”

The completed facility will be known as The Sound Wall. The Slocumbs are hoping to provide a small town recording experience in a premiere space. Two studio rooms are planned for the first floor; the rooms can be used for recording, rehearsals, writing sessions, post-editing video, photo shoots, video shoots, and will be available for special events.  A gourmet kitchen with a large family-style farm table will allow local chefs to prepare meals on-site for visiting artists and bands. A one-bedroom apartment will be housed upstairs, offering lodging to artists using the studios downstairs or to people who want an inspiring place to stay in town.

1910 Opelika house set to be transformed into The Sound Wall.

The Slocumbs moved to Opelika from Canada ten years ago.  “We are always asked, ‘Why did you move here?’” says Jen. “And really the short answer is we felt  - and still do - that there is something special about the Auburn/Opelika area. Now that we are touring less and spending more time at home raising a family, we are very passionate about contributing to our local community.”

“We hope The Sound Wall will become an extension to the already existing and expanding arts community,” adds Rob.

Martha’s Trouble, called “a hidden gem” by Billboard Magazine, is known for its signature sound of folk and country twang, which has been praised by some of the most influential and well-respected music critics of our time. Martha’s Trouble has been listed and featured in the aforementioned Billboard Magazine, as well as USA Today, AOL Music, Sirius XM Satellite Radio and Performing Songwriter. Their songs have received awards and have been featured in the show “Army Wives” and made-for-TV movies on Lifetime and CBS. The duo’s band name comes from a Bible story about Martha and Mary, one that they say is a reminder to stop and smell the roses and to keep an eye on the bigger picture and the important things in life. 

Opelika house interior

Late last year, Martha’s Trouble offered some new additions to their holiday repertoire with two digital singles, “River” and “White Christmas,” which followed on the success of two independent holiday albums, Christmas Lights (2002) and This Christmas (2008). Prior to that, they also released: Jen Coates’ Seed Sessions (2014), A Little Heart Like You (2012), Anchor Tattoo (2011), EP (2008), Forget October (2006), Still (2003), Sleeping Dogs (2002), and The Road Ahead (2000).

For more information, please contact:

Krista Mettler, Skye Media,