Just as one might imagine a circus to be—upbeat, unexpected, accomplished, and exciting—the Martin Family Circus aims to bring that same joy and a room full of fun with their heartwarming and lively “music that makes you smile!” This self-contained vocal-driven melodic band of 2 parents and 4 kids ranging in age from 8-17 packs a punch with their rich stack of family harmonies in a soaring blend, which Rolling Stone magazine dubs “exuberant.” Representing four generations of musical heritage, Martin Family Circus delivers soulful family harmony with a pop/r&b musical snap, steeped in traditional roots.
“Our house has always been like a live jukebox, with an all-you-can-play buffet of musical instruments,” says Jamie. “Music completely pervades our lives, so our kids have never known a day without it.”
Fueled by a mutual burning passion for a multitude of genres and a longing for fun musical experiences for their kids that were clean and family-friendly, Paul and Jamie began singing together with their four children, March (17), Kell (14), Texas (10), and Tallant (8), in 2010. Quickly realizing that the kids all showed an uncanny knack for hearing harmonies and pitch, as well as for playing instruments, they began performing shows together. They were soon dubbed the Martin Family Circus by Country Music Hall of Fame member Vince Gill, playfully teasing with them about their growing number of kids and the craziness that goes hand-in-hand with a large family.
“Ours is a real family, and we knew there was an unpredictable nature to working with our kids. But they were just crazy with passion, truly breathing through the music we were creating,” says Paul. “There was no other answer than for us to do this with them.”
So where did it all begin? Grammy-winning artist Paul Martin, lead singer/guitarist of country-pop group Exile, met and married Jamie Allen, daughter of Duane Allen of Country Music Hall of Fame members The Oak Ridge Boys. They exposed their four children early to their 4-generations of rich musical heritage, and watched as each child showed God-given musical talents early on. Practice soon led to performances around the Nashville area, then appearances on national television shows like The Oak Ridge Boys’ American Legion Christmas special, “The Marty Stuart Show” and “Larry’s Country Diner.” After a rousing performance of “Elvira” to a packed house for the Oak Ridge Boys’ induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Billboard Magazine quoted them as “singing to the rafters,” getting a crowd of seasoned performers and music industry folks to their feet.
The Martin Family Circus is now finishing their second CD project, Past, Present, Future, which includes classic hits that inspired them to sing, current favorites that are inspiring now, and some brand-new self-penned material that they hope inspires a new generation. Their main focus is family, and sharing their joy through the soaring sounds of musical harmony.
Jamie: “We have always felt that music is food for the soul, and that love is the answer to just about every situation. So for us, it’s all about pouring out our family’s joy and filling people up with a little musical love!”