Our family has always been musical. The kids started singing before they could talk. It seemed there was always music around our house. Dad and Mom sang on the worship team and the kids sang in Sunday School programs. It was just a way of life for us.
We learned about bluegrass music at a local jam held by some friends. They included us the first time we went, asking the kids if they wanted to sing. Everyone sang harmony for them, and when they forgot the words, the group filled in for them. They got to see that there was nothing intimidating about playing these instruments.
So it was no surprise that soon the kids started asking for their own instruments. James started on harmonica, and later shifted to guitar. Pearl picked up the harmonicas when James put them down. Ruth wanted to play fiddle (a.k.a. violin) since she was 6, so it was a natural fit for her. Grace loved to sing and soon learned to yodel. Dad got tired of sitting and listening as his children learned all this great music without him, so he got a mandolin so he could play and sing with them. Mom loved the autoharp and was hooked when a long-time player at the jam let her borrow his one afternoon.
At first, we just sang whatever we could learn - Gene Autry and Roy Rogers were our favorites. Later we learned some other familiar songs and then added a few hymns. Each was a little different. We met other families that sang bluegrass gospel music, and learned songs from them.
We started adding our own touch to our songs, each one somewhat different. Some had more of a folk-song feel, others had more a hard-driving bluegrass touch. We tried a few southern gospel songs and quartet numbers, both with and without instruments, depending on how the song felt to us.
Eventually, we realized that no one musical genre fit us, so we did the only "normal" thing we could do: we created our own genre! Thus was born "Front-Porch Family-Style Music"!
We have enjoyed bringing our music to many different venues, from festivals and fairs, to nursing homes and senior centers, to church concerts. Our music is Christ-centered and family-building. We strive to make our music entertaining, but want it to be more than just entertainment. We want people to remember the blessings of God and to turn to Him for direction in their daily lives.