Asheville, NC folk/soul/world group Rising Appalachia -- led by sisters Leah and Chloe Smith -- are gearing up to release their seventh album, Leylines, this Friday (5/3) (pre-order), and one of its songs, "Speak Out," features one of the sisters' heroes, Ani DiFranco, on guest vocals. "Born and raised as Southerners, there has been a surge within us to speak forth and name what we did not want to see our beautiful home region claim or host," the band says. "An urge to stand for an empowered and diverse South with an environmental wealth to protect instead of the grey cloud of consumption and capitalism, the distortion of privilege and pride. There is so much beauty to this homeland that we love, and we wanted to call out the toxicity and make space for us to each be protectors of this piece of the world. Our all-time favorite righteous musician/activist/hero/babe Ani DiFranco textured it perfectly with her anthemic and potent voice, and brought our full vision to life here."

The song premieres in this post, and it's an appealing dose of fiddle-fueled folk with close harmonies and some pitter patter percussion, and it doesn't take more than one listen to pick up on the song's powerful message. Listen below.

The album was produced by Joe Henry, and made with longtime band members David Brown (stand-up bass, baritone guitar) and Biko Casini (world percussion, n’goni), as well as West African musician Arouna Diarra (n’goni, talking drum) and Irish musician Duncan Wickel (fiddle, cello). Other guests include singer/songwriter Trevor Hall and jazz trumpeter Maurice Turner.

The band also have some upcoming tour dates, which are listed below...

I Believe In Being Ready
Speak Out (Featuring Ani DiFranco)
Love Her In The Mornin’
Shed Your Grace (Featuring Trevor Hall)
Make Magic
Sunny Days
Indigo Dance (Featuring Maurice Turner)

Rising Appalachia -- 2019 Tour Dates
May 5 - One Eyed Jacks - New Orleans, LA
May 8 - Music Box - San Diego, CA
May 10 - Lightning in a Bottle - Bakersfield, CA
May 24 - Kerrville Folk Festival - Kerrville, TX
June 6 - Pyro Arts and Music Festival - Garretsville, OH
June 15 - Palisade Bluegrass and Roots Music Festival - Palisade, CO
June 16 - The State Room - Salt Lake City, UT
June 19 - Rialto Bozeman - Bozeman, MT
June 20 - 4 Peaks Music Festival - Bend, OR
July 5 - Rio Theatre - Santa Cruz, CA
June 6 - Esalen Midsummer Festival - Big Sur, CA
Aug. 2 - ARISE Music Festival - Loveland, CO
Sept. 6 - Sisters Folk Festival - Sisters, OR

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