Rockland Road is a street just outside Nashville. It’s a studio where countless hit records have been recorded. It’s a crossroads where country, gospel, pop, R&B and Americana music has coexisted and thrived for years. It is also a vocal-driven, melodic band with a signature sound as rich and authentic as its namesake.
Rockland Road is six musicians who share the last name Martin—representing four generations of musical heritage—all vocalists who among them play 23 different instruments. It is a powerhouse group featuring soulful vocals imbued with a pure, exuberant joy worthy of the talented blood that flows through this family’s veins.
As they prepared to enter the studio for their forthcoming project, Rockland Road was pitched songs from some of the top writers in Nashville. One song in particular came up repeatedly. Unbeknownst to one another, no fewer than three friends in the industry considered them the only act that could give this song the treatment it deserved.
Hearing something special in the lyrics, and sensing something almost prophetic in the way it came to them, Rockland Road infused the up-tempo and uplifting lost-love song with their soaring six-part harmonies, bringing a hand-clapping energy into the tune penned by award-winning songwriters Greg Barnhill, Reed Waddle and Stan Karcz. “Caroline” was released as Rockland Road’s debut single to serve as the centerpiece of their forthcoming, as-yet-untitled album.
Their latest single, the fun-loving “Feels Like This,” was written by band members Texas (lead vocal), and March (acoustic guitar, drums), along with award-winning songwriters Greg Barnhill and Greg Bieck (who also produced the single) to provide a little levity in what has been a heavy start to 2021. It’s a 3-minute joyride that practically begs you to roll down the windows and crank up the volume!
Fueled by a mutual passion for multiple genres and longing for a fun, family-friendly musical experience for their kids, Paul and Jamie Martin began singing together in 2010 with their four children: March, Kell, Texas and Tallant. Quickly realizing that the kids all showed an uncanny knack for hearing harmonies, as well as for playing instruments, they began performing shows together.
“Our house has always been like a live jukebox, with an all-you-can-play selection of musical instruments,” says Jamie. “Music completely engulfs our lives, so our kids have never known a day without it. And that’s just how they want it.”
“We are a real family, at home or on the road, and we knew there would be an unpredictable nature to working with our kids,” Paul explains. “But they are filled with such passion, essentially breathing through the music we are creating,” he says. “It’s a given that we’re proud of them as parents, but, very quickly, we found ourselves appreciating the musical talent and the vocal skills that they contribute as fellow performers, not just as our kids. There was no other choice; we knew we had to do this with them.”
So where did it all begin? Grammy-winning artist Paul Martin, lead singer/guitarist of country-pop supergroup Exile, met and married Jamie Allen, daughter of Duane Allen, a member of Country Music Hall of Fame gospel group The Oak Ridge Boys, and Grand Ole Opry background singer Norah Lee Allen. Individually and collectively, Paul and Jamie’s four children were exposed early to a rich musical existence, and they watched as each child demonstrated God-given musical talent early on.
Regional performances began to boom, leading to appearances on national television shows like Huckabee, The Oak Ridge Boys’ “American Legion Christmas Special,” The Marty Stuart Show, Country’s Family Reunion, Gaither Homecoming and Larry’s Country Diner, and Jimmy Bowen & Friends. They’ve taken their stage show to venues as varied as the U.S. Library of Congress, the White House, the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Music Cruise and countless fairs, festivals and performing arts centers across the country. Additionally, Rockland Road has performed the national anthem for many major NBA, MLB and NCAA sporting events, including the NBA’s Indiana Pacers, Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs and Cleveland Cavaliers.
After a rousing performance of “Elvira” to a packed house for The Oak Ridge Boys’ 2015 induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Billboard Magazine heralded them as “singing to the rafters,” bringing a crowd of seasoned performers and industry insiders to their feet.
Rockland Road sees every night spent onstage not just as a time to spread the joy they get from music or as a chance to share their story. Every night is an opportunity to take a new audience on a musical experience they won’t soon forget.