Any large family will tell you that personal space can come at a premium, but can you imagine traveling the highways as a nine piece band, 2 parents and 7 kids? You know it gets tight some of the time.
But that’s been no obstacle for The Balos Family, a bluegrass Gospel group from Buchanan, MI. They’ve been picking, singing and touring since 2002, after Mike and Ramona Balos discovered that their children had an interest and a talent for music. Additional children have been added to the show as they were added to the family, with the younger ones knowing nothing but the family band scene.
Let’s see if we can get them all in…
Mike is on guitar and Ramona on bass, with Kenny on lead guitar, Ben on mandolin, Bonnie on banjo, Jimmy on fiddle, Jenna on dobro, Nate also on guitar or mandolin, and little Joel on ukulele. Most of the older kids, several of whom are now adults, help mom and dad with the singing.
They have five CDs and a concert DVD to their credit, with a new one, Built Upon The Rock, set for an April 7 release. Like their previous efforts, the bulk of the songs were written by the family, with Jimmy, Ben and Bonnie contributing new ones to the album.
There are no samples available yet for the new record, but here’s a video they created for their Forever Settled DVD project, with a brief snippet from each song.
Be on the lookout for Built Upon The Rock next month.