A country duo mourns the loss of two family members in just over one week Facebook/The Secret Sisters
Facebook/The Secret Sisters

Our condolences go out to sibling duo The Secret Sisters, who have lost both of their grandmothers in the last two weeks. They each passed away after fighting a battle with cancer. The loss has been staggering for the duo’s Lydia and Laura Rogers.

In a post on their Facebook page, they write, “Bear with us. We are mourning.”

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The post goes on to detail the pivotal role their grandmothers played in their lives.

It reads, “Two women, born to large, poor families. Women who married young, and raised their children in a tiny town in rural Alabama. Women whose son and daughter would meet, marry and make us. Two women who played a monumental role in raising us while our parents worked … Indeed, we feel like we’ve lost two of our mother figures.”

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The tribute continues with an admission of how much these losses hurt for them.

They write, “Pain is usually a sign that something truly mattered. They instructed us in strength, wisdom, common sense, humility, contentment, determination, resilience, simplicity, faith, family, loyalty, beauty, confidence, humility … anything good or honest in our own character is because of their sway in our lives. We have worked to make sure that what we do in the world would first please them. We have lived to make them proud.”

The Secret Sisters’ latest album, “You Don’t Own Me Anymore,” actually features old photographs of their grandmothers as the artwork. The project was born out of a tough time for the duo. A falling out with a business associate left them in a tough spot financially, and they thought they might not ever make music again. They fought back to make the new album, and they took inspiration from their grandmothers’ fighting spirits while recording the music.

View this post on Instagram

Countless folks have asked about the photo on the cover of our new album. Second only to putting out a record of songs we are proud of, the biggest joy of this process has been to talk about the woman whose photo we used to make a big statement. The young girl is our paternal grandmother, Marcie, around 14 years old, and sporting her first perm. This video is of her now, at age 86. We've been so happy to tell folks across the country about her, and how her influence has helped mold us into the strong women we are. Tomorrow, she will go to an oncologist for the first time, to discuss treatments for a wicked tumor that was discovered just as she made her album cover debut. With her age, there are concerns about the best way to fight the cancer, but her spirit is the same strong one we've known and loved and found inspiration in for so long, and though we are unsure about the path ahead, we know she will face the future bravely, whatever it may hold. If we may, we'd like to request your prayers and positive thoughts on her behalf, that we, as her family, can all make the right decisions with her and for her, and that she won't suffer as bad as she does when she has to eat Aunt Jemima brand waffles. 😝

A post shared by The Secret Sisters (@thesecretsisters) on

They say, “What we see this morning—upon finding ourselves without our matriarchs—is that although we believed our third record to be about a hard situation that happened to us … it was so much more about us happening to a hard situation. More than any other thing, the lyrics were about us … two women who can confidently and kindly navigate the challenges that threatened to break us. And we can say for certain that we learned that skill from them.”

The Secret Sisters will carry their grandmothers’ memory with them as they head to New York City for the Grammy Awards later this month. The album they helped inspire, “You Don’t Own Me Anymore,” has been nominated for the Best Folk Album Grammy.

The Rogers sisters hope their fans will join them in paying tribute to their grandmothers as well.

“In their loving memory, we ask that if any part of our third album has touched you, take a moment today to think of them,” they write. “Utter a prayer, or smile to yourself, or call your own grandmother, or play our songs at a high volume and shout at the top of your lungs to whatever hard thing you’re afraid of … ‘You Don’t Own Me Anymore!'”

What a touching tribute to two amazing women!

Also, check out this video The Secret Sisters posted about a month ago. It shows you just how deep music runs in the Rogers family as the girls’ father and his bluegrass band sing to their now late grandmother, Marcie, on her 87th birthday just last month.

Hunter Kelly is a senior correspondent for Rare Country. Follow him on Twitter @Hunterkelly.
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