Jessica Fox, Mariah Hargrove, and Joseph Clarke are no strangers to singing. The long-time friends have spent time in recording booths providing backing vocals to other artists until they were called to take center stage, so to speak. The local gospel trio, known as Resound, released their first single, “Black History,” in February and they already have plans for an upcoming album.
“We wanted a name that was spiritual as well as musical,” Fox said of the band. “‘Resound’ means to echo; fill a space with sound. It also means to shout or proclaim. I felt it was perfect.”
For a few years, Resound offered their talents as backing vocals on numerous productions at Spacebomb Records until the RVA record label decided to pull them forward.
“They represent what we do at Spacebomb so well in terms of spirit, improvisation and craft,” said Matthew E. White, local musician and founder of Spacebomb Records in a statement. “The only logical step was to move Resound from being background singers to being up front and the main artist.
After the label signed them, they went into the studio right away to record “Black History” as their first track, which was released Feb. 28.
“Black History” tells a story of struggle and hope, from slavery through the civil rights movement, to the present day. It also features a harmonized cover of the chorus from John Legend and Common’s “Glory”, which was originally featured in the film, Selma.
“When we were arranging “Black History”, we purposely went from despair to hope,” Hargrove said. “We wanted the world to know that we were aware of the state of our country, but that we believe in hope and the giver of that hope, Jesus!”
Fox and Clarke have known each other since childhood, and they met Hargrove about eight years ago.
“They met me while we were doing background vocals for a play,” Hargrove said. “As time went on, we began singing in a lot of community groups, where we were the common denominator.”
The musical journey began when the friends casually recorded themselves singing while setting a table for dinner one night.
Once it was posted online and had gone viral, the singers began to post more videos of themselves. After catching attention of other gospel singers, such as Fred Hammond and Donnie McClurkin, as well as pop stars like Ariana Grande and India.Arie, they’ve since performed on Good Morning America and The Potter House, a benchmark location for their genre.
“We have tours and more music that will be dropping soon,” Clarke said. “We are finally working on an album as well. Great things in store.”