Folksinging sisters Maggie Roche and her two-years-younger sister Terre were born in New York City and grew up mostly in New Jersey. For Christmas 1964, 13-year-old Maggie was given a guitar, and the family (also including a third sister, Suzzy, and a brother, David) learned to play folk songs by watching Laura Weber on public television. As teenagers in the late '60s, Maggie & Terre formed a duo and got their first break when they were signed to Marilyn Lipsius' Coffee House Circuit, an agency that booked acts at colleges. In 1971, Maggie boldly introduced herself to her songwriting idol, Paul Simon, which led to the duo becoming his protégés and singing backup vocals on "Was a Sunny Day" on his second solo album, There Goes Rhymin' Simon (1973). They spent two years performing on the college circuit, ending up in San Francisco and falling in with the remnants of the hippie movement, people whose interests would later be dubbed new age. They eventually hitchhiked to Louisiana with a friend involved with the martial arts, staying at what they have described as a "Kung Fu temple" in Hammond. Returning to the East Coast, they were signed to a production company by Simon, which in turn led to a contract with Simon's label, Columbia Records. Their debut album, Seductive Reasoning (1975), contained one track produced by Simon, "If You Empty Out All Your Pockets You Could Not Make the Change," and the rest produced by either David Hood and Jimmy Johnson of the Muscle Shoals Sound Rhythm Section (which played on the album) or by Paul Samwell-Smith, a former member of the Yardbirds. The album's songs, written by Maggie, chronicled the sisters' recent cross-country adventures.