Members: Sadler Vaden, Jason Fox, Jonathan Carman
"When my darkest days are here, you make my shadows disappear, when I'm too blind to see, you shine the light for me."
After nearly 2 years in the studio and battles with numerous personal struggles, Charleston, SC, rock trio Leslie returns with the release of their debut album Lord, Have Mercy.
Leslie, a regional touring machine, has shared the stage with The Whigs, American Bang, Johnny Winter and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Along with collaborations with writers Emerson Swinford (Rod Stewart) and Josh Jenkins (Green River Ordinance), Leslie took an entire year hiatus to write the album together in various places including a solar powered swamp house in Echaw, SC.
"It was very important for us to spend that creative time together. There was no TV, no cell service, you had to drive six miles just so someone could hear you scream. Being out in the middle of nowhere really helped us concentrate and focus on crafting the songs," said lead singer Sadler Vaden.
The album was recorded by Grammy award winning producer Paul Ebersold at legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN - the home of songs by everyone from Led Zeppelin and Leon Russell to Isaac Hayes.
"Ardent was a really great experience. Memphis definitely puts you in the state of mind where you just wake up everyday and you know that so much great music was recorded there," said Vaden. "The halls and the rooms of Ardent just smell like rock and roll."
With Ebersold at the helm, Lord, Have Mercy tells the story of overcoming life's obstacles and becoming stronger through those challenges. Songs such as "End of The Road" and "Scarlet Rose" explore Vaden's struggle with losing both of his parents before his 21st birthday. While "Shine A Light" and "No More Tears" discuss the inner strength it takes to pick yourself up and move forward when things feel helpless, and "Mercy" explains that love is the answer that allows us to find peace.
"It makes a statement that after all the stuff we've been through, there's something more important on the other side," said Vaden. "You just have to carry on and move forward to be able to see it. We needed to make a positive rock record for ourselves, and the only way to do that was to write songs we could sing our hearts out to every night."