Rascal Flatts Initially Passed on One of Their Biggest Hits
In late 2004, Rascal Flatts released a single that would become one of their signature songs: "Bless the Broken Road." The song won the country trio a Grammy, spent five weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard country singles chart and went Multi-Platinum — but only after the group initially passed on recording it.
Flatts member Gary LeVox shares that he and bandmates Jay DeMarcus and Joe Don Rooney were originally pitched "Bless the Broken Road" — written by Jeff Hanna, Marcus Hummon and Bobby Boyd and first recorded by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in 1994 — for their 2002 album Melt.
"We were just like, 'Well, we we've got enough ballads,' and all that," LeVox shares during a recent media event. "I mean, who would've known that it [would be] that big?"
Rascal Flatts were impressed with the song, LeVox continues, but they never thought it would turn into the No. 3 country song of the year on the Billboard singles chart in 2005. They also didn't know its history: that Hummon also cut the song solo in 1995, and Melodie Crittenden charted with it in 1998.
It was DeMarcus who thought they should reconsider recording "Bless the Broken Road" when it came time to make their next album, 2004's Feels Like Today. As he remembers it, while they were working on that record, he found the demo for the song while cleaning out his car — and, well, you know the rest.
"Bless the Broken Road" was a crossover hit for Rascal Flatts as well, hitting the Top 40 on the pop charts and Top 30 on the all-genre Billboard Hot 100. It's become a wedding staple among country fans, but DeMarcus says he views it a bit differently.
"'Bless the Broken Road' always, always hits me right in the heart every time I hear it ... I feel like in a lot of ways, Gary, Joe Don and myself, all of our broken roads led us to each other," he shares. "I feel like every time we sing that song, I reflect on what it took to bring the three of us together ... Everybody thinks about it being a romance ... but it means something else to me, personally."
On Friday (Oct. 2), Rascal Flatts will release a greatest hits album as part of their farewell celebration. The record features 13 of their No. 1 songs and seven other fan favorites.