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Peasall Sisters bring it on home

By John Lupton, December 2005

Page 2...

"Most of the time, it just comes naturally," says Leah. "I usually jump to tenor, but sometimes I'm singing bass. We all have really wide ranges, so it always just kind of works out, and I don't think we've ever had to really set a harmony part. Sometimes we'll have to go back and do a couple of changes, but other than that, it usually just comes natural."

The Peasalls first performed about seven years ago at a church service while visiting their grandparents in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. That led to more performances in churches and nursing homes under the name Precious.

In 1999, they auditioned for "O Brother" and were turned down for an on-screen role, but made the soundtrack.

They released their debut, "First Offering" in 2002 on Varese Sarabande with mainly Christian songs. They also sang "On the Sea of Galilee" on last year's "The Unbroken Circle" tribute disc to the Carter Family.

The Peasalls maintain an active touring schedule, and Sarah says it's making that bridge between live performance and recording that she finds especially worthwhile.

"I really enjoy being in the studio and recording because it's kind of a challenge to get the energy that would be there in a live performance, you know. You've got to try to get that to come through the recording. So, I absolutely love to be in the studio. But, also, I love performing for people. That's such a great feeling when you're on stage in front of a bunch of people."

Hannah quickly agrees, adding that - at least, at her age - life on the road is a big part of the adventure as well.

"Of course, the whole being on stage, performing part of it, that's really a lot of fun, especially when you have a fun crowd. It just makes the whole event fun. Then, the traveling, of course. We travel with the family, the whole family comes, and we have six kids altogether, and that's a lot of fun."

Being on stage, she notes, gives each of them a chance to develop their own individual ways of relating to and entertaining a crowd. She knows, for example, what Harpo Marx knew - that you don't have to say anything to get the biggest laugh.

"I'm the only one that doesn't really talk, I'm just kind of the 'quiet one' of the group, so I use facial expressions a lot. Like when Leah and Sarah will get in a spot, or something else, I'll kind of give a (knowing) glance out to the audience."

And, Leah makes it unanimous.

"Being on the road. It's really cool, and you get so many different experiences, so that's probably my favorite part."

The music biz, she understands though, not all fun and games.

"It's really slow. Nobody likes to, like, get things done. That's kind of a bummer. They're all Type B. That's just my feeling. A lot of the people are really down to earth, and you wouldn't really suspect that they would be. But we've met so many people, and all of them have been just incredibly nice and just amazing."

"I love every part of it, really," Sarah chimes in, "but the waiting, I don't love the waiting. There's a lot of waiting in the music business, unfortunately."

"I think," she continues, "as I'm getting older, more in depth with record deals and things like that, it almost seems like...there are times when it's a little more political than all about good music. I hate that it's that way. Like, how you get your songs on the radio, 9 times out of 10, it's how much money your record label has, I think that's a shame. When you have a good song, it should be on the radio, no matter what."

As a recent high school graduate, of course, Sarah is the one with The Future staring her most immediately in the face, but she seems to have made the transition from young girl to young woman with the grounding in faith and common sense that parents Michael and Sally have instilled still intact.

"I'm trying to take it a year at a time. Most likely, I will go to college eventually. I'm not going this year. I'm taking a year off just to focus on my music, just really get my focus on that, really work on writing. I really would love to produce, I absolutely love to produce, and I'm kind of trying to head in that direction. So, I'm just praying about it and taking it a year at a time, see what God wants me to do and what my next step should be...I've thought about studying music, but then at the same time, I really enjoy counseling. I would like to be a Christian counselor or something like that."

Although the youngest of the performing sisters, Leah my have the clearest view of the road ahead.

"I really hope that we can keep on doing this, and we are taking this year by year and day by day. But I love the entertainment industry. I would love to become a film editor and producer, and I write stories and plots and stuff like that, so I'm always working on that. I would love to be in film, but I also love the music industry, and if this is what the Lord wants us to do, so be it."

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