Despite being the middle daughter of superstars Bruce Willis and Demi Moore, Scout Willis is not used to being the centre of attention. Where some celebrity offspring court the spotlight and even star in their own reality shows, Scout shies away from it. So much so that it nearly prevented her from pursuing her passion: singing.
“I’ve always been a little bit shy and kind of embarrassed to do it,” she says. “I felt like I was like, showing off.” Perhaps having famous parents, and for a while, a famous step-dad in Ashton Kutcher provided more than enough attention for Scout, who inherited her mother’s trademark husky voice: “I’ve never liked putting myself in the middle of things… I guess that could be attributed to the way I grew up with my family.”
Scout’s discomfort with attention – despite having a some seriously impressive pipes! – makes more sense when you remember that, unlike most children of famous parents, she didn’t grow up in Hollywood. Instead, she was born and raised in the small town of Hailey, Idaho, which is how she met who would later become her musical partner, Gus Wenner. “We were neighbours in Idaho,” she explains. “Gus visited all the time with his family.” Her partner hails from his own famous family, his father Jann Wenner is the founder of Rolling Stone magazine.
The two were reunited years later as students of Brown University and their musical connection was instant. “It just felt very, very natural,” offers Gus. “And we took it from there.”
Where they’ve taken it, is here to Canada – the duo are performing several shows in Toronto as part of the North by North East Music festival and they’re hoping it’s just the beginning of their musical journey.
But before they can take over the world, Scout has something she needs to do – finish college. “I can’t start something and quit it,” she says. “Everyone in my family has dropped out of high school to model or act and that’s just never really interested me.” But, what might interest Scout instead is one day scoring the cover of the Rolling Stone – after all, her partner Gus has an in!