Red Roots made their Michigan debut in Dowagiac Wednesday evening.
The 20-year-old triplets from Hurley, Miss., packed Michiana Church of Christ, whose pastor, Justin Shepard, commended “these gals and their parents,” Mark and Sherry Taylor.
“They weren’t here 30 seconds and they said ’y’awl,’ ” said the balding Shepard, joking about the transition from “Red Roots” to “no roots. They do more than sing, they minister. Today, they came from Louisville, Ky.,” and were too busy trying to learn to say Cheboygan to attempt Doe-Wah-Jack.
“The name Red Roots does come from our red hair,” said Natalie, who played violin, mandolin and keyboard.
She began taking piano lessons at 9.
“More importantly, it comes from the fact that we’re rooted in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Just to let y’awl know you aren’t crazy, we are triplets. I’m the middle child of us three girls (they have a 4-year-older brother, Mark Jr.). My way, way, older sister, Nicole, by one whole minute, she plays bass, banjo and guitar. Then our little baby sister, Nika, is our lead singer. She also plays guitar.”
The Christian country trio’s video, also called “Red Roots,” about a father and daughter hunting sassafras roots to make red tea, can be viewed on YouTube or on their Web site, www.theredroots.com, where a photo of the women with fans who came to the concert wearing the group’s T-shirts will be posted.
Nicole stays in the background the most, but delivers the most powerful testimonial introducing “Red Roots”:
“I didn’t get my true red roots until I was 15 years old,” she said. “I was supposedly doing everything — going to church, playing in a Christian band, reading my Bible, praying — but I never came to a point in my life where I really realized how wicked and evil my heart was and what a sinner I was. Nothing really clicked with me. One night at church the Holy Spirit just began to use the scripture to pierce my heart. God began to reveal to me how wicked and evil my heart was. When the invitation came, I felt so much guilt. I’m so thankful God broke down my barrier of pride that day. Pride blinded me all those years. Once I repented my sins, God took all that away.”
Shepard’s favorite tune, “God Says No,” was introduced with, “When we first started out, our band was taken advantage of. We wondered why God would let that happen to us. We wondered if it was a sign we should just quit, but we kept praying and time passed by” and eventually, “God opened some doors for us.”
“This is a God thing because they haven’t been in our church, unless they were mice in the last three weeks or a month,” Shepard said. “I love guitar picking and fiddle, violin and banjo, but when they sang ‘God Says No’ and they haven’t been here, God knew what we needed. That’s my favorite tonight because it ministered to me.”
Shepard related that a few weeks ago while he was home and his wife was at work, an elderly woman and a 13-year-old girl knocked on the door.
“They invited me to church,” he said. “I don’t know if it was the devil or what got into me, but when they said, ‘Do you go to church?’ I said, ‘Yes, I do.’ They said, ‘Do you go to church a lot?’ I still played my dumb game with them. Then I couldn’t take the dishonesty anymore” and confessed he was the Michiana Church of Christ minister.
“The 13-year-old said, ‘That doesn’t matter. Do you know Jesus?’ She’s to be commended. The last two sermons here have been about don’t ever quit. Don’t ever give up your faith. You’re 20. I see God doing great things with you and through you. Don’t ever give that up.
“I see you on the rise. Stay humble. God gives grace to the humble. And it’s never to be assumed that because someone goes to church they know Jesus. Never assume that.”
The Red Roots closed with a reprise of the “hillbilly guitar song” they performed earlier.
SGNScoops would like to thank Red Roots for a great concert and John Eby for the great concert review and picture.