Broken Letters was formed in 1989 at a rural Southern Baptist church just outside of Birmingham. Its founders David Hickox and Brad Davis were heavily influenced by Southern Gospel music, Full-Gospel sermons about the fire below, and by the Center Point Parkway. They framed their musical direction and honed their musical skills in stints playing with the church choir, playing in a Carpenters tribute band with the Minister of Music, singing hymns in the woods about various burning fires, and being occasionally accompanied by such fires.
After many tours and celebrations with the Church, they played with underground bands like Plate Six, Lugsole, Accelera Deck,and Dan Sartain. Their chemistry became so profound that they even gave fully-improvised performances with regularity.