Family is a huge part of everyone’s lives. It keeps people motivated to keep going when the times get tough and it makes bands feel supported as they go across the country playing shows. For Texas rock band Flyleaf, the bond between the group and Carl Phelan, grandfather of guitarist Jared Hartmann, consisted of miles of memorabilia. Now these internal followings have found light in the book Flyleaf Spreads Their Wings. Phelan, known for devoting an entire room in his house to Flyleaf keepsakes (called the “Flyleaf Room”), shows that family has meant a lot to these rockers.
The book features a written history about the band and events surrounding their career, in addition to many outside reviews, features, and testimonies. The historical section is a straightforward biography and less of a textural and visual representation of the band. It’s a great reference when it comes to the band’s existence, sure to be worthwhile for anyone who has ever had a vested interest in the artist — from the times with Lacey Sturm singing to the new era with Kristen May. It’s an enjoyable keepsake, and that’s what makes it great. Featuring a list of every show Flyleaf has played since their beginnings as Passerby with a slew of photos, Flyleaf Spreads Their Wings is a nice grouping of mementos that gives a slice of Phelan’s memorabilia collection without actually stepping foot in the Flyleaf Room.
The outside articles make up a bigger portion of the book, and they’re what give the most perspective. It’s one thing to read about what the band has done in of themselves, but it’s another to hear from the lives that have been touched by their songs and live shows. One of the most beautiful things about Flyleaf is their supernatural vibe, whether it’s through their illustrious lyrics or soaring melodies, and these articles bring a spiritual moodiness just by reading them. You can feel what these people have felt, thanks to the band’s music. The effects have been life-changing, and it’s incredible to read about them in a collection such as this. You can even read a few that I’ve written about them, and I’m just scraping the surface of the plethora of stories in this book.
It’s not often that you hear about a grandfather’s connection with a band that plays as loud and intense as Flyleaf, but thanks to Carl Phelan, we can see how much family and outside support has meant to these folks over the years. For longtime fans, Flyleaf Spreads Their Wings is worth the investment as a great collection of everything the band has been throughout their career. For new fans as well, it’s a nice introduction and hopefully can lead these people to see just how a small spirit-filled rock band from Texas became the sensation it is today.
Flyleaf Spreads Their Wings is available for purchase here.