Carney asks Grollmus for a divorce while she is in Poland for a book research trip. Carney tells Grollmus to take anything they received as a wedding present. The pair also divides up their record collection.
In the end, when it came to dividing our 500 records, we didn’t really fight. He told me to take what I wanted and leave the rest. I tried to be fair and remember exactly what I had brought into the relationship and what I had acquired, personally, during it. Bikini Kill’s Pussy Whipped and Nico’s Chelsea Girl were no-brainers, as were almost all of the bebop records that I had purchased during a “jazz” phase. He could keep the John Cale. And though I wanted to take Nick Drake’s Bryter Layter, it had belonged to his father originally.
Carney and Grollmus marry after Carney proposes in Chicago during a The Black Keys tour:
He opened a bottle of champagne, while I lit a cigarette. He tried to get into a kneeling position, but, at 6-foot-4 inches, he was too tall to do it gracefully. Finally, he gave up, pulled a vintage diamond ring in a simple platinum setting from the chest pocket of his plaid thrift store shirt and asked me to marry him.
Carney and Grollmus begin dating. The pair start a short-lived band, Churchbuilder, which opens for Mary Timony at a campus show. Grollmus says:
…we soon realized the limitations of my musical skills. For me, singing and playing keyboards proved as challenging as discrete math. Our little duo wouldn’t be able to pull it off without help. We quickly recruited a couple of friends to perform with us. We taught them the very simple structures of our four modest songs and then, together, learned how to play “Tugboat” by Galaxie 500 as the final number. Five songs, 20 or so minutes. That would have to do.