Three Sisters and the Truth: The Story of Barlow Girls

by

Charles White


Drum sticks crack together. An electric six-string comes to life. A bass guitar pulses with the heartbeat of Rock & Roll.  From there it is a sprint to the end of an emotional and spiritual rollercoaster ride filled with the ups of heavy hitting pop/rock songs and the downs of beautiful, haunting ballads. I’m not talking about Evanesence, Lillix or any other mainstream female rock group. Instead, I’m referring to a group of three sisters from Elgin, Illinois that have taken the world by storm. Their name: Barlow Girl.

 

Becca, Alyssa and Lauren Barlow are three sisters from a suburban town 45 minutes from Chicago, Illinois.  From a musical family, these three talented young ladies caught the music bug at a very early age. Becca, the oldest of the group, began playing piano at the age of 8 and eventually picked up the guitar and bass about seven years ago. Alyssa, the group’s bassist and middle child, began with the piano at an early age and became the group’s bassist thanks to many lessons from her big sister, Becca. Lauren, the youngest of the trio was also exposed to the piano at a very early age but gravitated towards the drums. She serves as the group’s percussionist.

 

Before branching out on their own, the Barlow sisters served as the back-up band for their father, himself an accomplished musician. However, they didn’t leave their family behind when they hit the road. Their parents have made the transition from musicians to managers for the girls.

 

The world first caught a glimpse of Barlow Girl through the music of another popular Christian crossover group: Superchic[k]. Incredibly impressed by their conviction and character, members of Superchic[k] penned a popular tune simply titled, Barlow Girls and included this song on their Dove Award nominated release, Karaoke Superstar.   In October 2003, the girls parleyed this notoriety into a record contract with Fervent Records and the rest is history.

 

One of the major appeals that Barlow Girl brings is their sense of honesty and conviction. Although their music is on par with any of the mainstream girl groups on the scene today, their lyrics contain much more than the usual fluff seen in most pop/rock music. “It’s not just about a band, it’s about a ministry,” Lauren relates. ”We really want people to walk away with a deeper sense of God, a deeper sense of who they are or going away questioning themselves: questioning the areas in their life that we talked about in our show.”

 

This is a ministry that these girls take very seriously. Faced with the pressures dumped on every teen, Barlow Girl has chosen to share their struggles with their peers and show them that there is a better way than simply conforming to the masses.

 

“Society is throwing so much at our generation,” states Alyssa. “The pressure is high to lower our moral standards. We spent too much of our lives trying to conform and trying so hard to fit in. It only leaves you emptier every time. There is a better way. The last few years of our lives have been based on Romans 12:2 ‘Do not conform to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind so that you may be able to test and prove what the perfect will of God is.’ We love being able to share that with people.”

 

Through songs like Clothes, Average Girl and Pedestal, these sisters communicate virtues that seem to run counter-culture such as chastity, purity and trust and this has paid off for Barlow Girl. Thousands of teens have scooped up a copy of their debut album while thousands more have caught them on tour with artists such as Todd Agnew, Building 429 and Silers Bald.

 

However, success for these talented ladies isn’t about award nominations or gold records. Instead, success is simply remaining on the path that God has placed in front of them. “Coming into this we always thought success was how many records you sold, but we realized that God kept telling us that the only thing that defines success is obedience,” Becca explains. “As long as we are obedient to God then we are considered successful. If only one person buys our record, we are still successful because we are being obedient.”

 

Obedience, purity and chastity: three of the many virtues that Barlow Girl communicates through their music and their lives. Through their witness, Barlow Girl affirms that there is more to life than chasing around after the smoke and mirrors of popularity. I think Becca sums it up best when she said, “There is so much more to live for than the day to day. God has an amazing plan for everyone. God wants everyone to be a history maker in the lives around them. Everyone is called to do great things and be great in their lives.”

 

In a world obsessed with bigger, better, faster and more, it is amazing to find a group of young women who are willing to stand on the highest mountain top and share with everyone they meet that this is NOT what life is all about. Life isn’t about a thing. It is about a person: Jesus Christ. Life isn’t about following our own path, but His path. Life isn’t about being lost and adrift. It is about being grounded in The Way, The Truth and The Life found only in Jesus Christ, not the materialism that runs rampant in this world.