"With this group, we want to bring to light the culture and lifestyle of the Appalachian music we grew up in,” says Abernathy.
"We immersed ourselves in our native culture by way of sound and further educated ourselves to our own roots, those which are found all throughout the Appalachian music we grew up with,” says VanCleve. Ready to share its authentic and fresh approach with the public, the band went into the studio in the summer of 2018 and recorded its debut album, Appalachian Road Show. The project landed three multi-week number one songs on Bluegrass Today Weekly Airplay charts and garnered the band a New Artist of the Year nomination and Song of the Year nomination ("Dance Dance Dance”) at the 2019 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Awards.
Appalachian Road Show invites us to come and sit a spell on its porch as the band shares its dynamic musicianship through songs and stories emanating from the mountains and hollers of North Carolina and Virginia, to the coal mines of West Virginia and Kentucky. On its eponymous debut album, the band delivers powerful songs that range from the gospel-esque "I Am Just a Pilgrim” and "Little Black Train,” to the reeling, kick-up-your-heels "Dance, Dance, Dance,” to the ballad of love and loss "Anna Lee.” "All of these songs came from the Appalachian mountains and from the coal mining regions of Appalachia,” says Abernathy. "They confront topics such as logging, coal mining, trains, a sweetheart that took off, and so on. There’s something universal in the music and its expressed themes. There’s something for everyone.”