In a world where conformity is king and following the crowd is practically a surivial instinct, the women of HighroadIII, an award-winning Appalachian Gospel group from Nashville who just happen to be the best of friends, have always preferred the road less traveled. And so it's fitting that the trio's new album, which also features the girls' inventive "grassy" instrumentation, would bear the same name.
Singing and playing beautiful, haunting melodies and vocals that have been the group's hallmark, Sarah Davison, Anna Grace Kimbrough, and Kiley Phillips (all graduates of Belmont University's prestigious School of Music) feel that the music of The Road Less Traveled reflects their personal journey and expresses the heart of their choice to be set apart.
And so it's fitting that the trio's new album, which also features the girls' inventive instrumentation, would bear the same name. Filled with the beautiful, haunting melodies and vocals that have been the group's hallmark, Sarah Davison, Anna Grace Kimbrough and Kiley Phillips, all graduates of Belmont University's prestigious School of Music, feel the songs from The Road Less Traveled reflect their personal journey of being set apart.
"Ever since I was little, I knew my life was going to look a little different," Anna Grace shares. "I felt like God had placed a calling that required a response of separation from the average and the expected. He had called me to ministry, and it wasn't until many years later that I actually accepted the calling, but the preparation for that began from an early age."
Hoping to encourage their listeners to join them on the narrow path, the music of HighroadIII highlights how we are all designed to serve Him and that our lives are actually maximized when we're following the unique plan He has in mind.
"We strive to be real in our music and in our daily walk with Christ," Sarah says. "We play real instruments and the stories we tell at our concerts are close to our hearts. That's why we've always wanted to approach our entire music outreach that way; by doing things a little differently and staying confident in the specific message God has given us."
In addition to featuring a slew of new songs that underscore this message, the follow-up to their popular independent album, Turn Your Radio On, also includes a stunning original a cappella arrangement of "How Deep the Father's Love for Us."
"The a cappella standard is a great representation of our love for hymns and keeping them alive in today's worship," Kiley shares. "We love doing versions of some of our favorite old hymns because they are so rich with truth and with beautiful melodies."
Another special moment for HighroadIII was how the album's first single "There is a Man" came about. Written in a living room with Sarah on piano, the lyrics are an encouraging reminder that whatever is happening in your life, no matter how scary or challenging, that God is in control of it all.
"One day, the Holy Spirit reminded me of why we are playing music-- to reach others for Christ and to show them light in the midest of their darkness," Anna Grace recalls. "God comes to a broken sinner in a quiet and still voice that offers peace, grace, and love. He offers redemption and victory over sin and even death. It was from these thoughts that I penned the chorus" 'There is a Man who breaks the chains that bind our hearts in sin/There is a man who gave His life on Calvary/Swung wide the door to victory and blew the gates of Hell into the fire.'
Holding fast to the message that guides them each and every day, HighroadIII isn't just another group of talented musicians who play songs that are close to their hearts. Instead, they feel incredibly blessed to provide longtime fans and new listeners alike with the message of hope found in the Gospel and pledge never to forget their down-home country roots in the process.